Like Charles Dickens' Hard Times, L' appel des arenes depicts a modern wasteland: just as factories and industrial cities blight the landscape of the English midlands in Dickens' novel, so Aminata Sow Fall depicts a land laid waste by "the winds of the West" (88). The harmattan blows throughout the book: the countryside is ravaged by drought and villages are emptied by the exodus of young people to the cities. In both novels, traditional agrarian ways of life are devastated by the arrival of technology and foreign values. Personal relationships, particularly the close kinship network of family ard community, are shattered by the alienating, isolating tendencies of the modern world.
"Hard Times in an African Eden: Aminata Sow Fall's L'Appel des Arenes,"
Contributions in Black Studies:
Vol. 9, Article 10.
Available at: http://scholarworks.umass.edu/cibs/vol9/iss1/10