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15th Annual FIU Eric Williams Lecture Hails “The Mighty Sparrow” as Chronicler of History

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Material Information

Title:
15th Annual FIU Eric Williams Lecture Hails “The Mighty Sparrow” as Chronicler of History
Abbreviated Title:
News release from The Eric Williams Memorial Collection
Physical Description:
News release
Language:
English
Creator:
The Eric Williams Memorial Collection
Publisher:
The Eric Williams Memorial Collection
Place of Publication:
Miami, FL
Publication Date:

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
Applicable rights reserved.
System ID:
AA00019154:00001

MISSING IMAGE

Material Information

Title:
15th Annual FIU Eric Williams Lecture Hails “The Mighty Sparrow” as Chronicler of History
Abbreviated Title:
News release from The Eric Williams Memorial Collection
Physical Description:
News release
Language:
English
Creator:
The Eric Williams Memorial Collection
Publisher:
The Eric Williams Memorial Collection
Place of Publication:
Miami, FL
Publication Date:

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
Applicable rights reserved.
System ID:
AA00019154:00001


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Media Contact : Erica Williams Connell 305 905 9999 ewmc@ewmc.tt.org The Eric Williams Memorial Collection ________________________________________________________________________________________________ P.O. Box 561631, Miami, Fl 33256 1631, USA Tel: 305 271 7246 Cell: 305 905 9999 Fax: 305 271 4160 1 5 th Annual FIU Er ic Williams Lecture Hails The Mighty Sparrow as Chronicler of History MIAMI, FL ( November 3 201 3 ) Rawle Gibbons and Lord Relator lite rally brought down the house with their stirring tributes to both Eric Williams and The Mighty Sparrow at t he 15 th Annual Eric E. Williams Memorial Lecture on October 18 th The event was held at Florida International University Modesto Maidique C ampus as part of its African & African Diaspora Studies Program Distinguished Afr icana Scholars Lecture Series. With a combination of the spoken word and excerpts of Sparrow s numerous calypso e s covering the rise of Eric Williams ; the history of Trinidad and Tobago, the region, and indeed, that of the world Gibbons and Relator skillfully wove the tapestry of the symbiotic relationship between the two men the one elucidating his intellectual vision for his country the other, in a sense, giving it street cred. One From Ten Leaves Nought, Ten To One I s Murder: Eric Williams, The Mighty Sparrow and the Arithmetic of Caribbean Self completely engaged the listeners with its blend of wit, fun, yet serious scholarship The audience frequently sang the refrains o f the various calypso e s utilized to showcase the development of a national and regional consciousness in Trinidad and Tobago authored by Eric Williams and parlayed into the language of the street by Calypso King of the World Slinger Francisco, aka t he Mighty Sparrow. Rawle Gibbons, founding Director of the Centre for Creative and Festival Arts at the University of the West Indies (UWI) and Willard Harris, aka Lord Relator, pointedly made the case for calypso being institutionalized worldwide as a chronicler of histo r y, much as has been done for the West African Griot storyteller, long recognized as a repository of the oral tradition. Both addressed the issue of the apparent

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FIU Eric Williams Lecture page 2 decline of this f orm of social commentary, affirming its continued existence and relevance in Trinidad and Tobago at least the birthplace of the art In the lively Q & A that follow ed Lord Relator, a seasoned Trinidad and Tobago calypsonian noted for imitation and his ability to sing extemporaneous ly the art of composing impromptu lyrics about any subject, at any time, without previous thought or study ably demonstrated his considerabl e talent by responding to the 165 strong crowd with humorous d itties a s questions were posed to him stablished in 1999, and honors the distinguished Caribbean statesman Eric E. Williams, first Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago and Head of Government for a quarter of a century until his death in 1981. He led the country to Independence from Britain in 1962 and onto Repu blicanism in 1976. A consummate academic and historian, and author of several books, Dr. Williams is best known for h is groundbreaking work, the 6 9 year old Capitalism and Slavery which has been translated into seven languages, including Russian, Chinese Japanese and this year Korean and Turkish Popularly referred to as The Williams Thesis this landmark text continues to inform today's ongoing debate and remains this profound critique is still the foundation for studies of imperialism a New York Times Among prior Eric Williams Memorial Lecture speakers have been: the late John Hope Franklin, one African American experience; Kenneth Kaunda, former Preside nt of the Republic of Zambia; Cynthia Pratt, Deputy Prime Minister of the Bahamas; Mia Mottley, Attorney General of Barbados; Beverly Anderson Manley, former First Lady of Jamaica; Portia Simpson Miller, now Prime Minister of Jamaica; the celebrated civil rights activist Angela Davis; and prize winning Haitian author Edwige Danticat. The Lecture, which seeks to provide an intellectual forum for the examination of pertinent issues in Caribbean and African Diaspora history and politics, is co sponsored by FIU: College of Arts and Sciences School of International and Public Affairs Latin American and Caribbean Center, AADS Graduate Students Association, Student Government Association; Daniel Alfon so; Pascal e Becel; Rhea Mokund Beck; Sandra Bernard Bastien; Bilmor Advertising Irvine Headley; Lenore Cameron; Consulates General of Trinidad and Tobago and Saint Lucia; Edwards & Partners; Eglantine Gordon Memorial Fund; J ennifer Jagbir; Glenn Joseph; Nina Khell Garcia; Miami Dade College D r Leroy Lashley ; Neki Mohan; PAS Cargo; Aryian & Gieowar Singh; Mervyn Solomon; Linda Spears Bunton; Trinidad and Tobago Independence Ball Committee; Lillith Trewick; W elch, Morris & Associates, Ltd ; Sylvia Worrell and Christine G. Wray, M.D

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FIU Eric Williams Lecture page 3 The Lecture is also supported by The Eric Williams Memorial Collection Research Library, Archives & Museum at the University of the West Indies (Trinidad and Tobago campus), which wa s inaugurated by former U.S. Secretary of State, Colin L. Powel l in 1998. It was named to UNESCO Memory of the World Register in 1999. EWMC