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Edited by George Elliott Clarke
Porters Lake (N.S.), Pottersfield Press, 1991. 178pp, paper, $14.95
ISBN 091900147-X. CIP

Subject Headings:
Canadian Literature-Black Authors.
Canadian Literature-Nova Scotia-Collections.

Grades 12 and up / Ages 17 and up

Reviewed by Joan McGrath

Volume 20 Number 2
1992 March

Fire on the Water, the first volume of a projected pair, is an anthology of the works of some eighteen named and several anonymous black writers of Nova Scotia, covering the period from the eighteenth century to 1935. These writings are arranged in four parts: "Genesis: Early Africadian Literature, 1792-1904," "Psalms and Proverbs: Orature (Spirituals)," "Acts: Modern Africadian Writers, 1901-1935," and "Selah: Envoy."

The term "Africadian" (African and Acadian), although not in common usage, has apparently existed since the founding of the community, denoting the black populations of the Maritimes, Nova Scotia in particular. The present volume is a compendium of works and testaments of the Africadians over approximately 150 years. Couched in orotund, biblical phraseology, the collection is a tribute to the faith and endurance of a group of people whose lot in life was hard indeed, but bravely surmounted.

Of interest to senior students with a particular interest in the study of black history in Canada. Includes notes on the various writers and a list of selected works for further study.

Joan McGrath, Board of Education for the City of Toronto, Toronto, Ont.
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1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995


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