Selvon, Samuel


Selvon, Samuel

▪ Caribbean author
in full  Samuel Dickson Selvon  
born May 20, 1923, Trinidad
died April 16, 1994, Port of Spain

      Caribbean novelist and short-story writer of East Indian descent, known for his vivid evocation of the life of East Indians living in the West Indies and elsewhere. He came to public attention during the 1950s with a number of other Caribbean writers, including V.S. Naipaul.

      Selvon worked as a wireless operator for a local branch of the Royal Navy during World War II on ships that patrolled the Caribbean; during a slack period he began to write poetry. In 1946 he went to work at the Trinidad Guardian. In 1950 he went to London, where he worked as a clerk for the Indian Embassy and wrote in his spare time.

      His first novel, A Brighter Sun (1952), describes East Indians and Creoles in Trinidad, their prejudices and mutual distrusts, and the effect of this animosity on a young man. It was the first time that an East Indian author had written with such quiet authority and simple charm about the life of these people. Its sequel, Turn Again Tiger (1958), follows the protagonist on a journey to his homeland. In this novel, which is perhaps his best, Selvon made extensive and striking use of dialect. The Lonely Londoners (1956) describes apparently naive immigrants living by their wits in a hostile city. His later works include a collection of short stories, Ways of Sunlight (1958), and the novels I Hear Thunder (1962), The Housing Lark (1965), Moses Ascending (1975), and Moses Migrating (1983), both sequels to The Lonely Londoners. Highway in the Sun (1991) is a collection of plays.

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • Selvon, Samuel Dickson — ▪ 1995       Trinidadian born Canadian author (b. May 20, 1923, Trinidad d. April 16, 1994, Trinidad), was an important West Indian writer who, with V.S. Naipaul, was in the vanguard of the Caribbean literary renaissance in London during the… …   Universalium

  • Samuel Selvon — (1923 ndash;1994) was a Trinidad born writer. Selvon was educated at Naparima College, San Fernando before moving to London, England in the 1950s, and later to Alberta, Canada. He is known for novels such as The Lonely Londoners (1956) and Moses… …   Wikipedia

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