A Far Cry from Africa Essay

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Jhan Hochman, who holds a Ph.D in English and an M.A. in cinema studies, is the author of Green Cultural Studies: Nature in Film, Novel, and Theory (1998). In the following essay Hochman examines the role of animality in "A Far Cry from Africa."

When most Westerners think of Africa, one of the first things that comes to mind are the animals— lions, elephants, zebras, giraffes, rhinos, hyenas. And although the issues of Walcott's "A Far Cry from Africa" are cultural—are concerned with people— animals materialize throughout the poem in generally two ways. As kinds, such as flies and ibises, animals are compared similarly to particular groups of people. But as a kingdom, as in "animal kingdom," animals are largely contrasted to humankind, even though Walcott does acknowledge a shared animality.

The opening image of "A Far Cry from Africa" is "A wind . . . ruffling the tawny...

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This section contains 1,350 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the A Far Cry from Africa Study Guide
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Literature of Developing Nations for Students
A Far Cry from Africa from Literature of Developing Nations for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.