Book Review: Ajani’s Wonderful Summer and the Imaging of the Black Boy

One aspect of the assault on the African family and on Black families has been the removal or lessening of the role of the father in the household.

The underachievement of boys in educational systems throughout the African diaspora, as well as the fact that the majority of perpetrators and victims of homicides, violent crimes and assaults in the diaspora are young men, are important issues that have been engaging the attention of people from all walks of life, for these are symptoms of crises occurring in Black communities and nation states.

Barbadian author, Dr. Akhentoolove Corbin, is concerned about the crises which exist in Black communities, especially as these affect Black boys. One of his major concerns is that many Black boys throughout the African diaspora grow up without a father figure in the house. We are well aware of this, for many of our Caribbean sociologists have drawn attention to this matter, and the absentee father has been one of the major themes of Caribbean sociology for a long time. Read More

 

 

Steeped in Tradition: Best Books to Understand Haiti’s Past and Present

Haitian history is defined by turmoil and upheaval, victory and freedom. In 1804, Haitian slaves won what is still regarded as the only successful slave revolution in history, to become the first free black state when the planet was being redefined by Caucasian genocidal geopolitics. These books provide an opening view into the fascinating world of Haitian literature.

Source – Penguin Random House: Steeped in Tradition: Best Books to Understand Haiti’s Past and Present

Death of a Great Caribbean Author

We just ‘heard’ through the Twitter grapevine (thank you, Bocas Lit Fest) of the sad news of the passing of Guyanese author Sir Wilson Harris. To echo Bocas Lit Fest, “Harris has been one of the Caribbean’s literary giants for half a century.” In his honor, we share an excerpt from a 2010 interview with […]

via Sir Wilson Harris has passed away — Repeating Islands

Baldwin, Brathwaite and Walcott: “Flight’s” Crewmen

by Harold Adrian Beckles

 

“..Well is one trip/[chorus] de Caribbean man/on de same ship/[chorus] de Caribbean man/an’ is one race/[chorus, as above]/in de same place …,” are the words that mark the distinctive antiphonal dynamics of a highly popular calypso of some years past, as its Trinidadian performer made an appeal for Caribbean peoples to embrace a heightened intercultural Pan-Caribbean awareness that would be founded upon a greater popular agitation for regional re-federation at the political level.  The question that emerges here, becomes this one: ‘What is this “one trip .. on de same ship,” when it is taken as the animating force that energizes the writings of a James Baldwin placed in conjunction with those of his West Indian peers Kamau Brathwaite and Derek Walcott?’  To a significant extent, the answer, as it applies to these three writer-academic, New World Africans, is, the sea.  For, according to St. Lucian-born poet and playwright Derek Walcott, “The sea is History” (derek walcott: poems  237).  The West Coast of Africa, Brathwaite’s “painfields” of the Caribbean, and the terminal ‘human marketplaces’ of the American southlands, were points that triangulated the European colonial powers’ operation of The trans-Atlantic Slave Trade.  These geographical points also serve to interweave the contemporary voices of these three writers of the Americas, across the abyss of memory within which their common ancestral spirits, in turn war against racial amnesia to awaken their sons and daughters to a purposeful vision for their people’s future.

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