Erna Brodber provides a lucid and literary social history of the village of Woodside in St. Mary, Jamaica, from slavery to 1944. The work is beautifully and sensitively informed by a variety of official sources, community meetings and oral histories. The range of the sources interpreted deftyly makes this a path-breaking book in the social history of Jamaica.
Brodber's work is a pioneering contribution to the study of the ordinary people of Jamaica and can be used to stimulate and inform community development. The book will appeal to historians and anthropologists, Africans of the diaspora, and general readers.
"This work is the creative expression of the love affair between myself and the village in which I was born and raised…Woodside, Pear Tree Grove P.O. combines the academic approach with fictive to produce a world in which the reader can walk, a world he can claim because his story has been used to make a community tale, grounded in orthodox historical facts."
"It is a fine piece of original scholarship, lucidly written and sensitively presented."
Swithin Wilmot, University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica