Country 12 of 196
- U. S. A.
- The Republic of Korea
- Antigua and Barbuda
- Trinidad and Tobago
f you are an author and want to represent your country, please contact me. If you want to do a guest post on your favorite story for the feature please contact me also.
If you are a publisher that has an anthology that is done in the 196 spirit, please contact me as I will be spotlighting appropriate collections.
At first I thought I was setting myself an impossible task but a bit of research has made me optimistic that I can find a short story from all 196 countries in the world. I feel this part of the project will be completed. I also hope to publish a contemporary short story from an author from all 196 countries and I know this is a crazy idea.
My post on "Illusion"-this has a link to a podcast of the story
My post on After Leaving Mr. McKenzie (based on her relationship to Ford Madox Ford)
In my trip through the Caribbean, upon reaching the tiny country (275 square miles with under 100,000 people) Dominica I was very happy to find a short story by Rhys, "The Lotus" in one of the books on my Ipad. (As far as I know none of her work is online-it will be under copyright in the USA and Commonwealth until at least 2029 -the only place to experience her work on the net is in the podcast I reference.)
|Rhys at 25|
I found this story to have a very auto-biographical feel. The story opens with a Christine and Ronnie talking about Lotus: "A tart! My dear Christine, have you seen her? After all their are linits?...she writing a novel. Yes,dearie--he opened his eyes very wide and turned the corners of his mouth down-all about a girl who gets seduced on a haystack". I know I have said I don't like stories about drinkers but when Jean Rhys writes one I do! Jean Rhys was a very bad alcoholic and was very fond of herbal drugs. She was also a street walker for a while in the rougher parts Paris and London because she found office work boring and she did not want to be a rich man's mistress. She was strikingly beautiful. She went twenty years "missing" in London and was arrested several times for being drunk and disorderly in the streets. She was basically a crazy old woman of the streets getting into stupid fights with people around her. She was a mess!
|Rhys at 80|
This story is Jean letting the world knows she knows how "respectable people see her". She knows she is way smarter than the people who look down on her, way better read, an accomplished poet and writer and she knows they see only a frumpy middle aged drunk. During he visit Lotus scores as many free drinks as she can, that seems her main reason for the visit. OK she is obnoxious! Then as she leaves a big commotion is soon heard in the streets. Lotus in an advanced state of intoxication (and the police see drugs in her behavior also) has stripped off and been arrested in front of her friends house walking the streets nude. Ronnie and Christine are mortified when the police knock on her door as a presumed friend of hers.
This story is Rhys way of telling the world to "screw off"!
I read this story in The Penquin Book of Modern British Short Stories edited by Malcolm Bradbury, a very worth buying book.
Dominica obtained its indepence from England in 1978. Most of the residents are descended from slaves. Rhys ancestors would have been bound servants or also slaves.
|"Jean, I love you"-Carmilla|