About the book
In the early 1900s, Bita Plant returns to Jamaica after seven years of European education to live with Malcolm and Priscilla Craig - the white missionary benefactors who helped her become a cultivated young woman. They have Bita's future mapped out: training at the mission and marrying a dedicated theological student. Reluctant to accept this fate, she is drawn back to the festivals, superstitious faith and passionate love affairs of her West Indian culture. Such antics are not deemed fitting for a refined lady and Bita must choose between the evangelical guidance of the Craigs and the sensual vitality of her roots. First published in 1933, the richly lyrical Banana Bottom is often regarded as McKay's finest novel. His innovation lies in the directness with which he speaks of social and political injustice for Afro-Caribbeans and in his choice of the working class as his focus. Claude McKay was an instrumental figure in the Harlem Renaissance.