Narrated in the first person by an unnamed female narrator the story is a memory piece and after reading the story the reader realises that Marshall may be exploring the theme of conflict.
Though living in the US, the Caribbean influence was very strong in her life.
They lived in a locality with a concentration of immigrants from the Caribbean. This way, Marshall picked up the accent and idioms of the language of the islanders. In this story we see the liberal use of their language and references to their culture.
This story is about the first visit the author paid to her ancestral place to meet her grandmother who is simply called, Da-duh. Relevance of the Title This story is about a visit the author made to Barbados when she was nine years old and met her grandmother for the first time.
The story ends with the death of the Grandmother who was called Da-duh by everyone. The story is a kind of tribute to the spirit of the grandmother which enabled her to live happily in her country, following age old customs.
Main themes There are several themes woven together in this story. The dominant theme is the inevitable comparison between rural areas of the Caribbean and urban sprawls of the US.
There is also the division between extreme youth and old age Da-duh is eighty. The way the elderly woman viewed the whites she cannot believe that her granddaughter had the temerity to beat up a white girl in her class and the way the child who lived in US did, is another theme.
Characters The narrator The author is the nine year old child who goes to Barbados for the first time to visit her grandmother, Da-duh.
Though they have not seen each other ever before, there is a bond between them. The grandmother is sharp and probing but the narrator is able to hold her own easily. The grandmother has some pre-conceived notions about US; she is not ready to change it.
Hence she asks the same questions again. The child answers her truthfully though she knows that her answers will disappoint Da-duh who is proud of her land.
Da-duh The grandmother took immense pride in her land. Though she does not say anything complimentary about her granddaughter, she seeks out her company recognizing the bond that exists between them.
Da-duh had several notions about how things were in the US. She thought that there were no trees in the US and nothing ever bore fruit.
Initially she has the better of her granddaughter but when she hears the description of snow, her confidence takes a beating. She also has no answer to the towering skyscrapers of US. Somehow she takes it personally and seems to lose her confidence.
She loves her house and land so much that she refuses to move out when the planes from UK come.
They flew very low and perhaps the fear that they would crash into her house killed her. The grandmother is most comfortable in the countryside where she lives. She has some fixed notions about US from where the granddaughter has come.
She thinks that there are no trees in the US as nothing grows there. She asks the child for confirmation of her notions.
But sometimes she has to admit that there is more to the US than she knows. The child tells her about the largeness of the Empire State Building and she promises to send her a picture postcard of it.
Summary The author, as a nine year old girl, goes to Barbados along with her sister and mother, to visit her eighty year old grandmother whom all call Da-duh. The old lady is an indomitable character who takes fierce pride in her land and her way of life.The setting of Paule Marshall's "To Da-Duh, In Memoriam" is the island of Barbados in , when it was still under British control.
Marshall wrote the story as a memoir of her late grandmother. In her short story “To Da-Duh, in Memoriam,” Paule Marshall shows the inescapability of this history by inscribing it into the very landscape.
In Marshall’s story, in her later work, and in works by a number of Caribbean authors, even “nature” does not offer a retreat from the political realities of the West Indies. Marshall’s short story “To Da-duh, in Memoriam,” revolving around a rivalry between a grandmother and a granddaughter, functions within a series of contrasts as each female tries to prove that her world is .
Start studying To Da-duh, In Memoriam - Paule Marshall. Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools. In To Da-duh, in Memoriam by Paule Marshall we have the theme of conflict, connection, confidence, change, acceptance and pride.
Narrated in the first person by an unnamed female narrator the story is a memory piece and after reading the story the reader realises that Marshall may be . Da-duh had a profound mistrust of all machinery whether it was the lorry in which they all travelled from the port or the aircraft which came in a show of strength from England.
When the author grew up, in a tribute to her grandmother, she spent some time in a loft that was located above a noisy factory.