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Authors: David Dabydeen

Published by Peepal Tree Press

ISBN: 9781900715683

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David Dabydeen’s Turner is a long narrative poem written in response to JMW Turner’s celebrated painting ‘Slavers Throwing Overboard the Dead & Dying’. Dabydeen’s poem focuses on what is hidden in Turner’s painting, the submerged head of the drowning African. In inventing a biography and the drowned man’s unspoken desires, including the resisted temptation to fabricate an idyllic past, the poem brings into confrontation the wish for renewal and the inescapable stains of history, including the meaning of Turner’s painting.

Turner was described Caryl Phillips as "a major poem, full of lyricism and compassion, which gracefully shoulders the burden of history and introduces us to voices from the past whose voices we have all inherited", and by Hanif Kureishi as "Magnificent, vivid and original."

In addition to the title poems, Turner contains selections from David Dabydeen's two earlier books, Slave Song (1984) and Coolie Odyssey.

David Dabydeen was born in Guyana. He has published six acclaimed novels and three collections of poetry. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and Professor of Literary Studies at the University of Warwick.
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