Sunday, January 21, 2018

Challenging the world to take stock of a new era of writing Caribbean writing*

TOP SPOT: Caribbean writers are making a greater impact on the world literary scene. Last month Jamaican novelist and winner of the 2015 OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature for fiction, Marlon James, won the most coveted UK international literary prize for A Short History of Seven Killings.

There have been many exciting things happening for the local literary community and also that of the region as a whole and the Bocas Lit Fest has been the main catalyst for many of these. The festival has over the years been providing a platform upon which many local and Caribbean authors launch out to Britain, Europe and North America.
For many North Americans, Cuba and Haiti grab the headlines, sometimes the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico, while the rest of the Caribbean is just a tropical dream come true – sun, sea, sand and happy natives. The NGC Bocas Lit Fest is setting out to show that there is a lot more to the Caribbean than the images in the glossy tourist brochure.
At the Miami Book Fair taking place from today to next week Sunday a clutch of new Caribbean writers will be presenting their work in an event called Not That Caribbean: New Writing from the Antilles. In it, fiction writer Elizabeth Walcott-Hackshaw of Trinidad and Tobago and Sharon Leach of Jamaica will explore the wry, self-conscious sides of the urban Caribbean, while debut poet Vladimir Lucien of St Lucia, winner of the coveted 2015 OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature, turns the eye of his 21st-century generation to the island celebrated by Nobel laureate Derek Walcott.


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