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Word Count: 727
Born in Antigua in 1949 Jamaica Kincaid moved to the United States to attend college Her works are semi-autobiographical and deal most frequently with two particular themes The first theme deals with Antigua and island life in the Caribbean Kincaid captures the essence of the island through realistic images and vivid descriptions While all of her works treat this theme her first nonfiction work A Small Place deals exclusively with Antigua and the lives and lifestyles of its inhabitants The second theme Kincaid explores extensively is that of women and their relationships with each other particularly the mother-daughter relationship Kincaid writes of mothers and daughters in Annie John Lucy The Autobiography of My Mother and Girl The short piece Girl is one of Kincaids best representatives of the theme of a young womans relationship with an older female relative and of gender roles Girl was first published in 1983 in At the Bottom of the River a collection of stories which won the Morton Dauwen Zabel Award from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters Girl is a short piece that shows the dialogue between an older woman and a younger girl probably a mother and her adolescent daughter In the piece the mother instructs her daughter on many subjects from cooking and cleaning to social skills and love Despite its brevity Girl is a work which accurately and intimately portrays a mother-daughter relationship and expected womens roles The title of the piece Girl is an integral part of the work itself The title serves several purposes First the title represents the age of the daughter She is not a woman not yet on her own but a girl still dependent on another still with much to learn Second the title represents the mothers perception of her daughter She does not consider her a woman or a young lady but a naive girl in need of constant instruction and supervision A third purpose
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