blog | werkgroep caraïbische letteren

After a Caribbean hurricane

by Kirk Semple

SAINT-MARTIN, French West Indies — In the debris that had once been furniture and a roof were the vestiges of a holiday home: a cluster of flip-flops, a romance novel, a child’s ball floating in a plunge pool’s fetid waters.

On a recent visit, it looked like an artillery barrage had smashed into this small bungalow and a dozen or so other nearby cottages in a similar state of ruin, in what had been a pleasant vacation compound on a bluff above the Atlantic Ocean.

In Saint-Martin, the toughest, most uncomfortable questions are less about who will pay for rebuilding — France has delivered more than a half-billion dollars of aid — but where and how to rebuild, or whether to rebuild at all amid the threat of evermore powerful storms.
This has made the debate less an economic one and more about politics, class, culture and race, often pitting the local majority-black population against the French state.

Please, read the article on the New York Times website, October 7, 2019.

on 08.10.2019 at 13:11

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