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Scholars to analyze literature and culture in the Caribbean

Published: Oct 10, 2013

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The West Indian Literature Conference (WILC) being held this week at The College of The Bahamas will explore the literature and culture of The Caribbean, from today to Saturday at the Harry C. Moore Library and Information Centre.

For the second time in its 32-year history, the conference is being hosted by The College of The Bahamas and its School of English Studies. The theme is “Multiple Textualities: Imagining the Caribbean Nation”.

The conference attracts scholars to explore the literatures, arts and cultures of the Caribbean region. This year's conference welcomes critical practice and critical reflection on new, interpretive models for West Indian literature, art and critical discourse that stretch the boundaries of national discourse.

“The idea of multiple textualities is to think about text, and text isn’t just books anymore. Film can be text; music can be text; a painting can be text," said Dr. Craig Smith, conference co-chair and assistant professor, School of English Studies at The College of The Bahamas.

Novelist Robert Antoni, who has a family history in Trinidad and Tobago and roots in The Bahamas, will be the conference’s keynote speaker tomorrow and will present on the topic, “Claiming a Hybrid Language, Seeking a Hybrid Form: The New West Indian Literature.”  Later that day, he will also conduct a workshop on novel writing.

Academics from Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Puerto Rico, The Virgin Islands and North America will participate.

A variety of workshops will be held, such as writing for film conducted by Kareem Mortimer, an acclaimed Bahamian filmmaker who has won over 25 awards for his film projects. Cathie Brettschneider, who has had a career in scholarly publishing for more than 30 years, is another workshop facilitator.

There will also be screenings of Mortimer’s film “Passages” and Marion Bethel’s film, “Womanish Ways: Freedom, Human Rights & Democracy, The Women’s Suffrage Movement in The Bahamas — 1948-1962”.

“I hope that, especially for the local college community, persons will be inspired and encouraged in the work that we do [and] to see the importance of the work that we do as [people] who study Caribbean literature and culture,” Smith said.

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