French Caribbean Women and the Problem of Empowerment: A look at _Moi, Tituba sorciÃ¨re...Noire de Salem_ and _Pluie et vent sur TÃ©lumÃ©e Miracle_
This thesis explores the problem of self-empowerment for the French Caribbean Black woman as presented in the novels Moi, Tituba, sorciÃ¨re...Noire de Salem and Pluie et vent sur TÃ©lumÃ©e Miracle. The respective authors, Maryse CondÃ© and Simone Schwarz-Bart, use fiction to convey the plight of women in the French Caribbean. They successfully create characters who refuse marginalization imposed by their patriarchal and oppressive societies. CondÃ©'s novel, set in the 17th century first in Barbados, and then in Puritan New England depicts the challenges Tituba overcomes in reaching liberation. Schwarz-Bart presents the story of TÃ©lumÃ©e, set in Guadeloupe at the beginning of the 20th century. My study focuses specifically on the characters of Tituba and TÃ©lumÃ©e to show ways that they thwart the dominant social structures and norms that seek to disempower them. It reveals ways that CondÃ© and Schwarz-Bart make use of literature to reverse European perceptions of gender and race. Consequently, the literary fictions they create suggest possible ways of escaping marginalization and refusing racial and gendered subjugation.