Wednesday 26 April 2006

Book ~ "Kindred" - Octavia E. Butler (2004)

From ~ Kindred utilizes the devices of science fiction in order to answer the question "how could anybody be a slave?" A woman from the twentieth century, Dana, is repeatedly brought back in time by her slave-owning ancestor, Rufus, when his life is endangered. She chooses to save him, knowing that because of her actions, a free-born black woman will eventually become his slave and her own grandmother. When forced to live the life of a slave, Dana realizes she is not as strong as her ancestors. As Dana is sent back and forth through time, she continues to save Rufus's life, attempting during each visit to care for Alice, even as she is encouraging Alice to allow Rufus to rape her and thus ensure Dana's own birth. As a twentieth-century African-American woman trying to endure the brutalities of nineteenth-century slavery, Dana answers the question, "See how easily slaves are made?" For Dana, to choose to preserve an institution, to save a life and nurture victimization, is to choose to survive.

I read this book for our street's book club. Finally a book club book I really enjoyed! Thanks for picking it, Mon!

Though I read this book in four days, the book club meeting isn't until next month. Should make for some interesting conversations.


Lisa said...

I think I found my next read! Thanks!

MonicaH said...

The interesting thing about this book, is that it was first published 25 yrs ago. I'd never heard of Octavia Butler until this book. You're right it should make a great discussion. I only hope everyone has a chance to read it. - Monica