Derek Walcott Books In Order | Full List 2024

Derek Walcott was a prolific writer who often explored themes of identity, culture, and colonialism in his works. He wrote a total of 21 books, including poems, plays, and essays, during his lifetime. His writing earned him numerous awards and honors, including the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1992.

Derek Walcott Books in Order

  1. Omeros
  2. Collected Poems, 1948-1984
  3. White Egrets
  4. Ti-Jean and His Brothers
  5. Dream on Monkey Mountain and Other Plays
  6. Selected Poems
  7. The Poetry of Derek Walcott 1948-2013
  8. The Prodigal: A Poem
  9. The Odyssey
  10. The Bounty: Poems

Overview of Derek Walcott Books in Order


“Omeros” by Derek Walcott is an epic poem that reimagines Homer’s “Iliad” in a Caribbean context. Set on the island of St. Lucia, the poem tells the story of numerous characters who are interconnected by their struggles and desires. The narrative weaves together themes of history, identity, and the legacy of colonialism, while also exploring the complexities of love and human relationships. Through vivid and lyrical language, Walcott creates a rich and immersive portrayal of Caribbean culture and the impact of Western influences on the region.

The poem also pays homage to the beauty and harshness of the natural world, as well as the significance of the sea in the lives of the characters. The ocean is a recurring motif, serving as a symbol of both freedom and confinement, as well as a metaphor for the interconnectedness of the characters and their shared history. Through its lyrical and evocative storytelling, “Omeros” offers a profound meditation on the human experience in a specific cultural context, while also touching on universal themes of love, loss, and the search for meaning.

With its rich imagery and complex characters, “Omeros” is a powerful and thought-provoking work that showcases Derek Walcott’s mastery of language and storytelling. The poem’s exploration of Caribbean identity and history, as well as its use of intertextuality with the classical epic tradition, make it a significant and compelling contribution to both Caribbean and world literature.

Collected Poems, 1948-1984

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White Egrets

“White Egrets” by Derek Walcott is a collection of poems that focus on the themes of love, loss, and the passage of time. The book is divided into several sections, each exploring different aspects of these themes. Through a combination of vivid imagery and lyrical language, Walcott delves into his own experiences and observations, creating a deeply personal and introspective body of work.

The poems in “White Egrets” are characterized by their evocative descriptions of nature and the human experience. Walcott’s mastery of language and his ability to capture the fleeting moments of life are showcased throughout the collection. The poems also reflect on the complexities of human relationships and the deep emotional impact of memory and nostalgia.

Overall, “White Egrets” is a powerful and poignant collection that offers a glimpse into the poet’s inner world. Derek Walcott’s exploration of universal human emotions and his skillful use of language make this book a compelling and thought-provoking read for anyone interested in poetry and the human experience.

Ti-Jean and His Brothers

“Ti-Jean and His Brothers” is a collection of three plays written by Derek Walcott, a renowned playwright and poet. The book explores the cultural and folkloric traditions of the Caribbean through the stories of three brothers, and their encounters with mythical creatures and deities. The plays are steeped in symbolism, addressing themes of colonialism, power dynamics, and the struggle for independence.

The first play, “Malcochon”, follows Ti-Jean as he confronts a monstrous pig, a symbol of oppression and exploitation. Through his cunning and tenacity, Ti-Jean ultimately triumphs over the creature, embodying the resilience of the Caribbean people in the face of adversity. The second play, “Ballad of the Sad Cafe”, delves into the complexities of love and desire, as the brothers vie for the affections of a beautiful woman. Finally, “Ti-Jean and His Brothers” focuses on the interactions between the three siblings and the devil, delving into themes of temptation and moral ambiguity.

Walcott’s masterful writing weaves together elements of folklore, mythology, and social commentary to create a compelling and thought-provoking exploration of Caribbean identity and history. “Ti-Jean and His Brothers” offers a rich tapestry of drama, symbolism, and cultural insight that continues to resonate with readers today.

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Dream on Monkey Mountain and Other Plays

“Dream on Monkey Mountain and Other Plays” is a collection of plays by renowned playwright Derek Walcott. The plays in this collection explore various themes such as identity, colonialism, and spirituality. The title play, “Dream on Monkey Mountain,” is set in a Caribbean village and follows the spiritual journey of an outcast named Makak, who experiences a series of vivid dreams that challenge his understanding of reality.

Another play in the collection, “The Sea at Dauphin,” offers a poetic exploration of the impact of colonialism on the Caribbean region. The play delves into the complexities of cultural identity and the struggle for freedom in the face of oppression. Finally, “Ti-Jean and His Brothers” is a reimagining of the classic Caribbean folktale about three brothers who encounter the devil and must use their wit to outsmart him.

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Throughout the collection, Walcott employs poetic language and vivid imagery to bring the Caribbean landscape and its people to life. The plays offer a powerful exploration of the Caribbean experience and provide a unique perspective on the impact of colonialism and the search for identity.

Selected Poems

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The Poetry of Derek Walcott 1948-2013

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The Prodigal: A Poem

“The Prodigal: A Poem” by Derek Walcott is a poem that tells the story of a young man who leaves his home and family to seek adventure and experience the world. The protagonist experiences the excitement and thrill of being free from the constraints of his upbringing, but also faces hardship and loneliness. As the poem unfolds, the prodigal son begins to long for the comfort and security of his home and family, realizing that true fulfillment comes from a sense of belonging and connection.

Walcott’s poetic language and vivid imagery bring the emotions and experiences of the prodigal son to life, capturing the reader’s imagination and engaging their emotions. The poem explores themes of longing, homecoming, and the search for meaning and purpose in life. Through the journey of the prodigal son, Walcott offers insight into the human experience and the universal desire for a place to call home, both physically and emotionally.

“The Prodigal: A Poem” is a powerful and evocative exploration of the human condition, told through the lens of a timeless story. Through his poetic mastery, Derek Walcott offers a poignant reflection on the complex nature of human emotions and the universal yearning for connection and belonging. The poem is a compelling and thought-provoking work that resonates with readers on a deep and personal level.

The Odyssey

“The Odyssey” by Derek Walcott is a reimagining of Homer’s classic epic poem. Set in the Caribbean, the book tells the story of Odysseus’ journey home to his wife Penelope after the Trojan War. Walcott infuses the story with themes of colonialism, loss, and the struggle for identity. The author’s lyrical and evocative language brings a fresh perspective to the ancient tale, incorporating elements of Caribbean culture and history.

The poem takes readers on a sweeping and emotionally resonant journey through Odysseus’ trials and tribulations, as he battles the forces of nature and encounters mythical creatures. Through vivid imagery and rich storytelling, Walcott captures the essence of the original epic while infusing it with his own unique voice. The result is a powerful and thought-provoking work that offers new insights into the human experience and the complexities of cultural identity.

Walcott’s “The Odyssey” is a powerful and poignant retelling of a timeless classic, reimagined for a modern audience. The book’s exploration of themes such as displacement, longing, and the quest for home make it a relevant and compelling read. With his masterful poetic skill, Walcott brings the ancient tale to life in a new and captivating way, weaving together history, mythology, and personal narrative to create a work of enduring significance.

The Bounty: Poems

“The Bounty: Poems” by Derek Walcott is a collection of his poems that showcase his unique and powerful poetic voice. The book contains a wide range of themes and subjects, including history, politics, personal identity, and the Caribbean landscape. Walcott’s poetic style is known for its lyricism, vivid imagery, and evocative language, and this collection is no exception. The poems in “The Bounty” explore the complexities of human experience and offer deep insights into the human condition.

Throughout the book, Walcott reflects on the legacy of colonialism and its impact on the Caribbean region, while also celebrating the beauty and resilience of the people who call it home. His poems are rich with references to Caribbean history and culture, as well as the natural world that surrounds the islands. Through his powerful and evocative language, Walcott captures the essence of the Caribbean and offers a deeply personal and moving perspective on its people and landscape.

“The Bounty: Poems” is a testament to the enduring power of Derek Walcott’s poetry and his ability to capture the complexities of human experience with depth and beauty. The collection is a powerful exploration of history, identity, and the natural world, and it solidifies Walcott’s reputation as one of the most important poets of the 20th and 21st centuries.

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Biography Derek Walcott

Derek Walcott, a Caribbean poet, playwright, writer, and visual artist, was born in Castries, St. Lucia. In 1992, he received the Nobel Prize for Literature for his luminous poetic oeuvre, which was sustained by a historical vision and a multicultural commitment. His work, distinct from the emerging schools of magic realism in South America and Europe, delved deeply into the symbolism of myth and its connection to culture. His most famous work, the epic poem Omeros, reimagined the Homeric story and traditions as a journey through the Caribbean, the American West, and London. Walcott was a founding member of the Trinidad Theatre Workshop in 1959, which continued to produce his plays and others. He also established the Boston Playwrights’ Theatre at Boston University in 1981. Even after retiring from teaching poetry and drama at Boston University, Walcott remained active in the literary world, giving readings and lectures around the globe. He divided his time between his home in the Caribbean and New York City until his passing.

Author Derek Walcott

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Published at 9:46 - 21/01/2024
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