In The book “Krik? Krak!” by Edwige Danticat, is a story that showed the dark & hidden
Situations that Haiti struggled with during the 1950’s. The Haitians of that time faced
many violent & gruesome deaths, visions of freedom, and rebel.
Edwige portrayed the deaths by describing the massacres that were being done near the
river that split the Dominican Republic & Haiti. Victims were killed & slaughtered there
because they believed that Haiti’s Government was taking advantage of all the citizens &
so they thought by leaving Haiti and going to the Dominican Republic was going to be a
better life for them. When they finally got to the Dominican Republic, they would get
killed right on the spot for trespassing and not being from the country. & that’s how the
massacre river got its name & purpose. Another death Edwige portrayed was Celianne &
her baby. In the story of Children of the Sea, Celianne was one of the Haitians that
wanted to leave Haiti for a better life & felt ashamed that she got raped by the Macouts.
When Celianne’s baby was born, it was born dead & she refused to believe it was. But
later on, she ends up getting her baby thrown into the ocean & to follow along with the
baby, she ends up throwing herself in as well. Edwige also portrayed death in “Wall of
Fire”, when Guy puts an end to his life when he jumps out of his hot air balloon after he
fulfills his dream of flying the air balloon he decides that either way his life is going to
end in death.
Edwige had portrayed visions of freedom in the stories “Nineteen Thirty Seven”,
“Children of the Sea” and “Wall of Fire Rising”. In Nineteen Thirty Seven, the Madonna
statuette was both a symbolic & vision of freedom for the women who were incarcerated
in Haiti. It was a symbol of the Virgin Mary that Josephine’s mother used to embrace her
fallen ancestors and she believed that with the Madonna she can get her wings to leave
with her soul. In “COTS”, when the man on the boat was writing letters to his girlfriend
back in Haiti, he dreamed about going back to Miami to keep studying in his college
where he left off & on his way back to freedom he didn’t make it because he died at sea
along with the other Haitians that wanted a better life for themselves. In The Wall of Fire
Rising, Guy saw his freedom in the hot air balloon & wanted to fly away from Haiti so he
wouldn’t have to deal with the struggles he had in Haiti. They all tied together in one
because of the simple fact that they all had the same idea and dream of being free without
the abuse of the Haitian Government.
Danticat had many ways of portraying deaths & views of freedom, but very few on the
way Haitians rebelled. In “COTS”, Radio Six was one of the main radio stations that
talked about political struggles in the country. It talked about how Haiti was corrupted by
the Government officials taking advantage of the citizens and wanted the people of the
country to follow along with what’s going on in Haiti that they didn’t know about. The
members who were involved in this group were killed for speaking against the
government & one of the members that was in Radio Six managed to escape from the
Macouts and onto a boat leaving Haiti. In “Wall of Fire Rising”, Guy rebels against
Lilli’s decision about Little Guy’s future and feels that he’s a failure to his family for
making them struggle. Then Guy decides by stealing the hot air balloon at his job, he’ll
achieve something he’s always wanted in his poor life and ends up jumping off the
balloon to end all his troubles.
This story made me feel the pain and agony that the Haitians had to go through with their
government and face all the cruel situations life has put them in. It wasn’t just deaths for
no reason, it wasn’t something they asked for, it was a holocaust that was going on in
Haiti and people were scared to express or even think about what they pleased. This is the
story of “Krik? Krak! “ by Edwige Danticat and how she portrayed violent deaths,
visions of freedom, and rebel .
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