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6th – St. Lucia Studies Conference June 22 to 24

Prof. Hazel Simmons -Mc Donald To Deliver Memorial Lecture.

Image of Prof. Hazel Simmons -Mc Donald
Prof. Hazel Simmons -Mc Donald

THE sixth St Lucia Studies Conferene will be held from June 22 to 24 under the theme: “Discovering St. Lucian life and culture through ongoing research”. The organizers are the Harold Simmons Folk Academy and the Folk Research Centre.

The first Saint Lucia Studies Conference was organised by the Folk Research Centre in March 2004. The theme was “A critical path to St. Lucia’s development.” Visitors attended from Vienna and St. Lucian students at universities abroad presented their findings. The late Manfred Kremser, a long standing friend of the FRC from the University of Vienna, was also here and made a presentation.

The opening ceremony was held at the FRC while other meetings were held at the CDF Conference room. Other Conferences were held in 2007, 2010, 2012 and 2014.

The aim of the Saint Lucia Studies Conference is the presentation of research by persons investigating various areas of St. Lucian life and culture. The FRC endeavours to publish the presentations in print and digital format.

The 2016 Conference will again provide a forum to lecturers and students doing research at St. Lucia’s Tertiary level institutions. Every effort has been made to identify and invite overseas scholars engaged in research into St. Lucian life and culture to attend. The aim is to make this growing Conference an important one to all those interested in investigating the life and culture of St. Lucia in all areas.

The re-established Harold Simmons Memorial Lecture is the keynote lecture of the 2016 Conference. The lecture had first been launched by the Cultural Department of the Julian R. Hunte group of Companies in 1979. The inaugural lecture was delivered by Derek Walcott on h January 24, 1979. Other lecturers in later years included St. Lucian Patricia Ismond and Trinidadians Kenneth Ramchand and Merle Hodge.

The 2016 Harold Simmons Memorial Lecture will be delivered by Professor Hazel Simmons-McDonald, Professor Emerita, UWI. It will be presented in association with the Sir Julian Hunte group of Companies.

The programme of presentations has been completed and is as follows:

June 22
8.30 – 9.30 Registration
9.30 – 10.30 Session 1: Castries and the St. Lucia Renaissance. Dr. Anderson Reynolds
10.30 – 11.00 Break
11.00 – 12.00 Session 2: Cricket – The West Indian Game of life; what lessons it teaches. Dr. Elphege Brown.
12.00 – 1.00 Lunch
1.00 – 2.00 Session 3: Scholars for or of Social Change: the experiences of St. Lucian Women Academics. Dr. Talia Esnard, Dr. Christine Descartes, Dr. Sandra Evans, Dr. Terencia K. Joseph.
2.00 – 3.00 Session 4: Classic St. Lucian storytelling – the oral heritage in Walcott’s ‘Ti Jean and his brothers.’ Kennedy ‘Boots’ Samuel.
3.00 – 7.00 Break
7.00 – 8.00 Official opening: Key note lecture. Professor Hazel Simmons-McDonald, Professor Emerita, UWI.
8.00 – 9.00 Official Opening: Reception

June 23
8.30 – 9.30 Registration
9.30 – 10.30 Session 5: A comparative study of inculturation in a Caribbean and Malawian context: The Folk Research Centre, St. Lucia and the Kungoni Centre of Culture and Art in Malawi. Msgr. Dr. Patrick Anthony.
10.30 – 11.00 Break
11.00 – 12.00 Session 6: Roderick Walcott’s Papa Diable: traditional Christian theology meets the Saint Lucian folk tradition. Kendel Hippolyte
12.00 – 1.00 Lunch
1.00 – 2.00 Session 7: Fighting for bread – the emergence of the Workers’ Movement: the Saint Lucia Co-operative Workers Union. Ezra Jn. Baptiste
2.00 – 3.00 Session 8: Learning society vs. Totally pedagogised Society – is it six of one, half a dozen of the other or is it chalk and cheese? Dr. Kentry Jn. Pierre.
3.00 – 7.00 Break
7.00 – 8.00 Session 9: Youth gangs and violence – their contribution to crime in Saint Lucia. Dr. Marcus Day.
8.00 – 9.00 Session 10: A science from God: legitimacy, morality and the distribution of spirit power. Vladimir Lucien.

Friday June 24
8.30 – 9.30 Registration
9.30 – 10.30 Session 11: Beyond the rhetoric – experiments in cultural expression and the building of Caribbean civilization. Embert Charles.
10.30 – 11.00 Break
11.00- 12.00 Session 12: Walcott’s Omeros and the narratives of Saint Lucia. Travis Weekes.
12.00- 1.00 Lunch
1.00 – 2.00 Session 13: Belief and meaning in architecture – an exploration of human diversity. Mark Hennecart.
2.00 – 3.00 Session 14:
3.00 – 7.00 Break: official close.

The Thursday night (June 23) lectures on youth gangs and tjenbwa (obeah) by Dr. Marcus Day and Vladimir Lucien respectively, will be open to the public. Persons interested in registering for the Conference are asked to call the FRC at 452-2279, or email frclibrary@outlook.com.

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