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Dead Woman Pickney

A Memoir of Childhood in Jamaica

By Yvonne Shorter Brown
Foreword by Sonja Boon
Subjects Family & Relationships, Life Writing, Biography & Autobiography, Social Science, Women’s Studies
Series Life Writing Hide Details
Paperback : 9781771125475, 340 pages, April 2022
Paperback : 9781554581894, 210 pages, July 2010
Ebook (EPUB) : 9781771125482, 348 pages, April 2022
Ebook (PDF) : 9781771125499, 348 pages, April 2022
Ebook (PDF) : 9781554581979, 210 pages, July 2010
Paperback - Unavailable

Table of contents

Foreword by Sonja Boon
Preface to the updated edition
Chapter 1 Early childhood memories
Chapter 2 Louisiana Blues, circa 1950-54
Chapter 3 Life and schooling in May Pen, circa 1955-62
Chapter 4 Clarendon College, Chapelton, January 1960-July 1961
Chapter 5 Becoming a Teacher, Mico College, 1962-65
Coda Finding Mother 1990-2020
Archival References

10th anniversary edition of this popular book about a Jamaica childhood.


Dead Woman Pickney chronicles Yvonne Shorter Brown’s life growing up in Jamaica between 1943 and 1965 and teaching in Canada from 1969. Told with stridency and humour, the stories include both personal experience and history.
Taking up the haunting memories of childhood, along with persistent racial marginalization of Black people, both globally and in Canada, the author sets out to construct a narrative that at once explains her own origins in the former slave society of Jamaica and traces the outsider status of Africa and its peoples. The author’s quest to understand the absence of her mother and her mother’s people from her life is at the heart of the narrative. The author struggles through life to discover the identity of her mother in the face of silence from her father’s brutal family. In this updated edition she adds a coda, “finding mother”, constructed from archives, genealogy, letters, and journals.
Initially published in 2010, this second edition includes expanded text and a foreword by Sonja Boon, author of What the Oceans Remember.