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Jamaica Kincaid Biography

(1949– ), New Yorker, At the Bottom of the River, Annie John, Lucy, au pair

antigua antiguan john york

Antiguan novelist and short-story writer, originally named Elaine Potter Richardson, born in St John's, Antigua, and educated at Antigua Girls' School. In 1966 she emigrated to New York and joined the staff of the New Yorker in 1976. At the Bottom of the River (1983), her first collection of stories, was acclaimed for the lyrical originality of its treatments of everyday events in a Caribbean setting. More factual in manner, her novel Annie John (1985) dealt with the tensions between a mother and daughter as the latter moves away from the traditional Antiguan culture in pursuit of professional opportunity. Lucy (1990) displays her increasing deftness of characterization and narrative in its account of a young Antiguan woman coming to New York as an au pair. Kincaid's other works include A Small Place (1988), which investigates the social and economic results of Antigua's emergence from its colonial past, and Autobiography of My Mother (1994).

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