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Short and poignant, The Spoken Word looks at a number of issues faced by some inner-city females who lack the protection that a strong support system provides. Although all forms of the family structures exist within the Jamaican inner-city, female-headed households tend to predominate; it is this reality that makes the extended family structure that can often consists of unrelated individuals banning together so important. In fact, for a newcomer with no help, the environment can be a corrosive and deadly one.

This is a reality Maxine soon realizes, and must live with as long as she remains there. It is also a reality that leads to her death long before she has any chance of escaping. But in the end victory is won, just not in a way she could have expected.

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