Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00072147/00049
 Material Information
Title: Tapia
Physical Description: no. : illus. ; 43 cm.
Language: English
Publisher: Tapia House Pub. Co.
Place of Publication: Tunapuna
Creation Date: February 25, 1973
Frequency: completely irregular
Subjects / Keywords: Politics and government -- Periodicals -- Trinidad and Tobago   ( lcsh )
Genre: periodical   ( marcgt )
serial   ( sobekcm )
Dates or Sequential Designation: no. 1- Sept. 28, 1969-
General Note: Includes supplements.
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 000329131
oclc - 03123637
notis - ABV8695
System ID: UF00072147:00049

Full Text


/ I i



E ...j1f

that there was a thick red
line dividing the older from
younger generations to-
mato ketchup. After the
recent HATT survey of
foods, some of us will cross
that line over-night.
Consumers were complain-
ing that ketchup was mouldy
and some milk products were
going sour easily. This, plus
the recent outbreaks of gastro-
enteritis, typhoid and mas-
stopping polio, led the vigilant
HATT to conduct a survey of
some food products on sale
Samples of ketchup and milk
products were purchased at
random and taken to the Carib-
bean Bio-Techni Lab and regu-
lar tests carried out.


The results warrant a full
inquiry into the conditions
under which food is manu-
factured, the quality of the
materials used, and exactly
what the Ministry of Health is
doing about maintaining health
standards in the country.
Of eight samples tested,
only Nestles Chocolate Milk
was found thoroughly fit for
human consumption. The others,
Cannings Egg Nog, Cannings
Vanilla Ice Cream Ramsarrans
Milk, Matouks Ketchup, Aylmers
Catsup, Catelli Tomato Ketchup,
and Cannings Reconstituted
Milk contained enough impuri-
ties to launch a major epidemic.
Using internationally accep-
ted indicators of contamination
due to the presence of organ-
isms, total counts of various
organisms which had no right
in food ranged from 30,000 to
over two million!
These figures are even more
fantastic when you consider
that it is per mililitre and five
militres equal one tiny teaspoon.
Contamination was due to a
number of reasons. Infected
and poor quality of raw materials
used, insanitary factory con-
ditions and insanitary practices,
inadequate processing and poor
storage facilities.

Since the epidemics roadside vendors, like these inCouva,are being
harassed by health authorities, but big-time operators, who reach
a wider market, are being allowed to get away with murder...
Ramsarrans Milk 8 out of 8 samples unsatisfactory.
Cannings Ice
Cream ...... 8 out of 10 samples unsatisfactory.
Cannings Recon-
stituted Milk 4 out of 9 samples unsatisfactory.
Cannings Egg Nog.. 9 out of 10 samples unsatisfactory.
Catelli ........ 6 out of 10 samples unsatisfactory.
Matouks......... 7 out of 10 samples unsatisfactory.
Aylmers ...... 5 out of 11 samples unsatisfactory.

A new word entered my
vocabulary and little did I know
that millions entered my in-
testines with my last Cannings
Ice Cream. Coliforms. These
organisms indicate faecal con-
United States food regula-
tions allow a maximum of 10
coliforms per mililitre. Of the
three Cannings products tested,
varying numbers of samples
showed a count of 23 to 600
coliforms per mililitre.
Anywhere else in the world
these factories would have been
shut down by health authorities
long ago.
Since sterilized powdered
milk is used in the preparation
of the Cannings products tested,

Annual General Meeting

READY in time for
our Annual General Meet-
ing on March 18, is
The Constitution of the Tapia
House Group of Trinidad &
Attractively printed by the
Tapia House Publishing Com-
pany, the booklet can be
requested by Members and

Associates from: The Admin-
istrative Secretary, 82, St.
Vincent Street, Tunapuna, or
from the Office Manager, 17,
Royal Road, San Fernando.
The publication contains
a Statement by Tapia Chair-
man, Syl Lowhar, and docu-
ments relating to the origins,
objectives and organisation of
our Movement.

contamination is probably due
to the water used in recon-
stitution or insanitary practices
of employees.
Among the organisms also
found in the milk products
tested were faecal streps, in-
dicating contamination by
human and animal faeces. Other
streps found were disease organ-
isms forming pus, causing boils
and wound infections; and the
staph aureus which causes food
Milk as the perfect food is
also the perfect breeding ground
for bacteria. The fact that one
product was found to be free
of all contamination means that
the highest level of sanitation
is possible.
Not only are these products
insanitary, but some fall way
below the legal standards for
fat content; either way they
are of no benefit to the con-
The three brands of ketchup
all showed high counts of yeast
and mould in quantities ranging
from 100 to over two million
per mililitre. This indicates in-
fected raw materials and either
improper handling or insanitary


Viole nce

in WI




of the





PAGES 10, 11, 12.

Many are perhaps not aston-
ished at the findings of this
HATT survey. Numerous are
the stories told by the em-
ployees of these factories.
That unwholesome pawpaw
is used in the making of ketchup
and the tomato paste used as
base is, to say the least, of
doubtful quality. That water
used in these processes is taken
from a hose attached to a pipe,
after use the hose is once more
thrown on the floor.
In the wake of the typhoid
and polio epidemics road-side
operations were harassed by
health authorities; a few weeks
ago Tapia reported the plight
of Couva roti and phulori
vendors. Yet the big time
manufacturers who reach a
vastly larger number of con-
sumers are allowed to traffic
their contaminated goods.
Copies of the laboratory
reports have been sent to all
health and consumer associa-
tions by HATT in the hope
that pressure could be brought
to bear on the delinquent manu-
facturers who were also sent
copies of the report.
So far, only Catelli has re-
plied to say that they have
recently employed a micro-
biologist and new equipment
has been ordered.
With all this, the offending
products are still on the shelves.
Health Authorities have taken
no action. Because of scanty
reporting in the daily press,
many remain ignorant of these
findings. What is everyone wait-
ing for? Another epidemic?


matk of

the besf'"
IN 1970, they brought "1001
White Devils" into the streets.
In 1971, it was "The Great
White Hope", and in 1972
"Europe to America".
This year, St. James United,
famed for their original Jouvert
presentations, are bringing "The
Mark of the Beast".
The band is intended to
represent the history of white
western "society", from the
days of the cave man through
to modern-day hippies.
Some of the feature cha-
racters will be "the missionaires
who paved the way for the
subversion of world cultures
and religion", the Klu Klux'
Klan, "the unofficial arm of
Imperial America's attempt to
keep down African resistance",
and the Bwana European Game
Hunters, glorified in the movies.
And, of course, there will be
a "devil" complete with horns
and tail.
The African Cultural Asso-
ciation Drummers will provide
music for the band, which is
expected to be 300 strong.
Band Fee is 75 cents and further
details may be had from the
organizers at 18 Ranjit Kumar
Street, St. James.
SEE PAGES 6 and 7




WE WERE happy to read
in the last issue of this
paper that the P.T.A. of
the Anglican School of
Tunapuna has taken up the
idea (mooted by H.A.T.T.)
of road safety in the parti-
area of the school.
We are not seeking the
crown, the glory and the lime-
light of dramatic pronounce-
ments but are following the
road of grass roots and in-
volvement in our own local
We are aiu aiming to be a
pressure group and work through
existing bodies (e.g. aforemen-
tioned P.T.A.) to improve the
quality of life for all of us.
The basis of this lies in a
true understanding of the con-
stitutional issue.
With this in mind we are
holding a meeting on Monday
February 26, at 7.30 p.m. at
the Archibald Institute, Austin
Street, St. Augustine.
Justice P. T. Georges will
address the meeting, clarify
points and answer queries.
All are welcome. Members
are asked please to note the
change of venue.
-HATT Tunapuna

Vol. 3 No 8

15 cents


i --, e 0" l 1 '' ZR11141-A1k


WILLIAMS' appointment of the Constitution Commission in
1971 followed hard upon Williams' affirmation that there was
no constitutional crisis. And, to do him justice, he has always
held to this line. His public and private utterances on constitu-
tional matters have always been to the effect that if only he were
to be given the powers to rid himself of the incompetence
surrounding him, to train and exploit his own chosen sources of
talent, all would soon be well.
To do him even further justice, he was not always alone in this belief.
There was a time, midway in their progression from adulation to execra-
tion of the messiah, that many citizens of this country concurred in
Williams' opinion. And of those who did not feel the same way, most
would have done so if they had been in a position to replace him with a
Doctor of their own.
So the Commission was seen by Williams as a bothersome concession to
a misguided public opinion, a piece of lip-service on a par with his "con-
cessions" in the fields of banking, industry and the arts. A constitutional
crash-programme or at best a National Consultation.
There had been commissions of en-
quiry before, and doubtless there would
be again. Reports had been submitted
before, and reports had been shelved
before, or published after a long delay
with no action taken in consequence.
And if the report should happen to be )
favourable to the Williams' view of
reform, so much the better.
Williams must therefore have reasoned
that all he needed to do was to appoint
a commission of lawyers, administrators,
diplomats, legal draughtsmen, academics -
and tame trades-unionists (no politicians,
please, we must keep politics out of our II i
constitutional deliberations; and above


all, no militants or revolutionaries).
A Commission appointed by the
Executive from among the official
instrument of the Executive and the
principal beneficiaries of the regime, with
an elder semi-statesman in the chair,
could safely be trusted to do nothing
more dangerous than fiddle around
with the Governor-Generalship and the
Privy Council, the voting machines and
the Ombudsman.
Doubtless it would be amenable to
instruction on what to report about the
really central issues of participation and
power, if only for lack of guidance from
the popular will.
A very serious misjudgment on all
counts. First, it misjudged the popular
mind: the people of Trinidad and Tobago
are no longer merely interested in
increasing the weight of the stick Williams
wields to beat them or in putting it in
the hands of another massa.


Even before the appointment of the
Commission, public consciousness of the
evils of over-concentration of power -
political and economic had already
been aroused far beyondWilliams' powers
of superficial appeasement. The deve-
lopment of reasoned opinions and de-
tailed conceptions of new and uncon-
ventional institutions to replace the old
awaited only the stimulus of a national
dialogue not a National Consultation.
Secondly, it misjudged the Commis-
sion. Groups of intelligent men have, at
the best of times, the annoying habit of
developing attitudes of their own. Such
a development is even more likely in a
situation where every interest group in
the country establishment or not,
privileged or dispossessed is awakening
to its role and the necessity to do what it
feels to be its duty.





Records of the Convention must be the property of the Convention and must not
be subject to editing by the government information services.

The Constitution Commission got
out of hand, from Williams' point of
view, the moment it began to take itself
seriously holding public meetings and
letting it be known that it was interested
in the economic and social aspects of
constitutional reform as well as the
legal window-dressing. That is, jthe
moment it became clear that the Com-
mission was prepared to be an instrument
of the people rather than a tool of the


And above all, Williams misjudged
Tapia. For it was Tapia who from the
beginning of the 1970 Revolution had
struggled to inject positive ideas for
change into the ferment of exasperation
and indignation. After criticising the
appointment of the Commission for the
bramble that it was, we acknowledged
its developing potential as a focus of
constructive dialogue, and beginning at
Arima, we sought to bring that potential
to fruition by participating in the first
series of meetings.
The next stage must be the last. The
National Convention must be the climax
to the mounting public dialogue on all
aspects of the nation's future. All groups
with any claim to represent genuine
interests or hold serious views on
economic or social reform must voice
them now or forever hold their piece.
The dialogue must continue as long
as is necessary for a consensus to be-
come evident, for the social contract to
be written for Trinidad and Tobago for
the first time. The Commission must
continue in its secretarial role.

If the citizens of Trinidad and Tobago
wish it, that is what it will be.
And no one knows this better than
Williams. That is why he now seeks to
smash the instrument he created, and to
pursue his own version of constitutional
reform consolidation of his position
within the conventional parliamentary
-framework. By dangling the bait of
elections he has no doubt sent the
conventional parties scurrying into
another round of uncomfortable mer-
Such overnight creation of "opposi-
tion unity" serves the double purpose
of providing Williams with a pretext for
an election before the Commission com-
pletes its deliberations (after all, isn't a
strong parliamentary opposition the key
to all our constitutional problems?)
and enabling him once again to shine in
contrast to the DLP's talentless decrepi-
tude. (Prime Minister Lequay? Joke is
joke, but don't break stick in monkey


If he can win one more election,
Williams reasons, he will break the spirit
of the people once and for all, and stay
in office another 20 years.
If the people of Trinidad and Tobago
are to prevent this, they have two
possible means; political and military,
peaceful and violent. If the first fails,
the only recourse will be to violence.
If this should happen, Tapia will be
prepared for this phase of the struggle as
it has been for all previous phases. We
certainly reject, as an alternative, any
idea of an election of the kind Williams
is contemplating.


Attractive Rates


Reliable Service


The only meaningful election will be
one that culminates the deliberations of
the National Convention; an election at
which the issues between the contesting
parties are the issues of political, social
and economic reform that will arise at
the Convention.
Furthermore, such an election must
be supervised by the Constitution Com-
mission or some other independent or
multi-party body, not by the existing
Elections and Boundaries Commissions.
The National Convention is the last
chance for a non-violent solution. But its
success requires certain conditions.
The Constitution Commission must
restrict itself to a secretarial role. It must
record, collate and interpret the views
of participants. Its members must not
express views of their own, since their
status lends such views unwarranted in-
fluence. It must make no more state-
ments of the kind one of its spokesmen
made some months ago, containing an
implied criticism of certain proposals for
change in the machinery of representa-
in the central government.
The Convention must not be held at
Chaguaramas. The immense logistical
problems related to this site are precisely
attendance. The public and open char-
acter of the operation would be far
better emphasised, and popular partici-
pation far better assured, if it were held
in Woodford Square.


The Tobago phase of the Convention
is indispensable, of course, but the
second phase should be held partly in
San Fernando.
Full and unrestricted publicity must
be given to the views of all participants.
Meetings must be continuously broad-
cast over national radio and television.
The records of the meetings must be the
property of the Convention and must
not be subject to editing by the govern-
ment information services before being
released to the media.
Furthermore, publicity for the views
of participatory groups must begin now.
All political groups must be given radio
and television time to enable them to
begin appealing to the public immedia-
tely, and thus stimulate the maximum
interest as early as possible.
There is no justification whatsoever
for persisting with a PNM monopoly of
the broadcasting media.
Tapia will insist on arrangements such
as these as part of our larger demand
for a political settlement of the national
crisis. These are the only terms which in
an election could have meaning because
they establish the only conditions which
could produce real parties.



-- --



PANORAMA:The past,the future,

the unclear present


IT HAS TAKEN us some
time, but we have finally
come around to the con-
clusion that you really can't
judge pan on the move.
That is why the Carnival
Development Committee
and Pan Trinbago changed
the rules of Panorama this
Before there were some five
or six judged strung along the
Panorama route doing their
damnedest to sort out intricate
arrangements and naunces of
tuning in the noise and general
bedlam that is Panorama.
The feeling that led to this
sort of arrangement was under-
standable. After all, the test of
a real blood and sand steelband
from the earliest days was its
ability to play while on the


Indeed there was a time
when some of the biggest bands
were disdainfully regarded as
"stage bands" all right for
classics and all that but some-
how not quite the real thing.
North Stars, Desperadoes,
Starlift, Cavaliers showed how
thin the dividing line really was
bymnanaging to win Festivals,
Panorama, Best Beating Steel-
band toute bagai.
After all it is unreasonable
to expect that a steelband that
has the discipline, organisation
and skill to meet the standards
required to win the stage com-
petitions, will, when it comes
to beating on the road, suddenly
Moreover, Panorama over the
years has become as much a
people's spectacular as a steel-

Ne w ta xi
March 1

TAXIMEN on the East-
ern Main Road have adopt-
ed three standard fare
stages between Port of Spain
and Tunapuna, which all
cars will now respect.
Going East, it will now cost
30 cents up to the Croisee only;
40 cents up to Mendes Drive,
Champs Fleurs; and 50 cents
up to El Dorado Road, Tuna-
Going West, the 30 cent fare
again stops at the Croisee; the
40-cent at the Lady Young
Junction, Morvant; after which
the 50-cent fare applies.
This decision was taken by
the United Taxidrivers Asso-
ciation at a meeting held in
Tunapuna on February 17.
The meeting also decided
that there will be no
peak-hour upping of fares;
that passengers to all des-
tinations will be accepted on a
first-come-first-serve basis ex-
:ept where cars'are taking the
Highway to and from Curepe;
that-a Pay-First System
Mill come into being and,
that the new arrange-
ments will come into force
from March 1st.


T ipolians from St. Jame
The past... Tripolians from St. James

The future... Phase Two a new approach

band competition. And we had
officials trying to separate the
two by calling on the "civilians"
to stay out of the bands when
they are going through the
They were ignored, of course
- steelbands streaming through
the Savannah and people are
expected to keep their cool and
watch from the sidelines! That
will be the day.
This year, I thought, the
C.D.C. and Pan Trinbago solved
the thing rather neatly. People
had their fun in the bands for
most of the route they
mingled, drank, and jumped to
their heart's content up to the
point of the stage.
At this point, they were
weeded out by the police, the
band on stage played out the
tune, stopped and played it
once more for the judges to
hear in relatively favourable


Even so supporters of some
bands, caught in the spirit of
the thing, managed to land on
stage with their bands, meriting
a rebuke from adjudicator
Marjorie Padmore who pointed
out that people and clothes
absorbed sound thus preventing
judges from hearing all that
they might.
The bands left the stage,
were re-joined by those sup-
porters of theirs who weren't
of a mind to hear the other
competing steelbands and that
was that. Except for some who
complained that with this
arrangement Panorama was
robbed of some of its
Now we have to be very
clear here as to what we want.
If we want Panorama to have
any resemblance at all to a fair
competition, there must be
some discipline. After all, the
police had a job to ensure that
each band got as fair a hearing
as possible because that is what

competition is all about.
Either that or bands, year
after year, will go through the
ritual accusations, claim that
"outsiders" infiltrated the band
inr a deliberate attempt to dam-
pen the sound of their tunes.
If we want a spontaneous,
joyful free-for-all, the answer
is simple -- abandon Panorama
as a competitive occasion,
spend the prize-money on tran-
sport and food and drink for
the beating members of the
To my mind, the nearest we
can come to having it both
ways is the Panorama competi-

tion last Sunday. I have argued
that the thing to do is to
substitute this competition with
a number of steelband jamborees
in communities across the land,
but that is something for the
steelbandsmen themselves to
It may well be, as has been
argued, that competitions have
been responsible for the sharp-
ening of steelband skills over
the years but perhaps we have
arrived at the point when what
is needed is joint action in
various aspects of steelband
research/ I mean how sharp
can skills really get?
Of course, with Sunday's
arrangement there will still bb
dissatisfaction all around. Pre-
cisely because the stakes are so
high prize-money, recognition,
bargaining power (fete-wise) in
the months following victory,
Panorama is very important.
Much too important, really,
but the demand for steelband
after Carnival is so small that
bands have to do well in Pano-
rama to get a share of the
small steelband cake afterwards.
Which, of course, is the real


And one wonders why the
Steelband Consultation skirted
the problem of too few outlets
for too many steelbands. A
result of this is that you don't
even hear about much less
hear play the majority of
steelbands except on Panorama
Recordings are few and bad.
One suspects that the conven-
tional methods of recording
are not suited to steelbands and
here is another area where
research is needed.
It is all these frustrations
that have led to the present

outcry by the smaller steelbands
against the big bands. It is
articulated in the charge that
adjudicators "thief" for the
big bands and one hears all
sorts of accusations about
money passed under the table.
The point is, however, that
the big bands have become big
by being consistently better
than the small bands. If all the
big bands were to stay out of
Panorama we would have the
sorriest display ever. But what
steelbandsmen in the smaller
bands are really saying is that
the big bands get all the plums
and nothing is left for them.


Of the bands I heard, Carib
Tokyo was, to my mind, easily
the best. This in itself is in-
teresting because Tokyo, after
being one of the big bands in
the late 50's, enjoyed several
lean years and were regarded
as a "small band". Suddenly
they are a "big band", having
managed to reach the finals of
a Panorama and running second
last year.
And this is what is going to
happen to any band who makes
a consistent appearance in the
Panorama semi-finals and finals.
Y De Lima Blue Diamonds is
yet another case in point and
Parliament Schezando will find
that via the magic of Panorama,
overnight they will have be-
come a "big band".

As Panoramas go, 1973's
was satisfactory. Tripolians were
courageous enough to carry us
back to pan's beginnings and
Phase Two in a clear departure
from the band that spawned
them Starlift joined High-
landers by amplifying their pans,
sounding a welcome note in
what I consider to be pan's

SYou always

wanted her to



I makes it easy -

and an ideal

G Gift too.



t ~ ~~- ,--,""' '"- ..~`'
5- -.



They feel


typhoid started


"IS ONLY pressure in
California. Like they forget
"You talking like if they
ever remember we".
"Nowork for the younger
heads. Ashes blowing into
your hair from the cane-
fields. And the drains. Look
at the drains. If you think
here bad, you should see
down Back Street".
The drain in front of Barbi's
Bar, on the Southern Main
,Road is really scandalous.


Muck and stink stagnant water.
Mr. Sirju, who operates a
Barber Salon and Cafe on the
Main Road, and some other
villagers, explained to me that
the drains are nearly always in
this condition. Whether it is a
polio or typhoid epidemic.
"I feel is here all epidemic
does start," one villager quipped.
Mr. Sirju has been to the
County Councillor, the Works

Department and no one seems
to know v ho is responsible.
No or-i seems to care. The
filth that clogs the drain in
California has, in fact, become
a way of life.
"Who to turn to? The
County Council say they only
have four men to look after
Couva, California and Dow.-
"And don't talk about Cedric
Weekes. He representing herself.

Big house. Two cars. He belly
swelling and he backside spread-
ing. Sweet living. He care if
our children have to live in


Yes, California, like so many
other localities, is screaming
for strong Local Government.
The blocks are filled with the
unemployed while the area is
begging for full-time main-
Villagers say they pay taxes,
National Insurance, Water rates,

Motorcar licences and they see
nothing for it.
"We don't mind paying taxes,
but we in California want to
see improvements in California.
We want men to represent our
community. We want our chil-
dren to look forward to.a better
Slowly but surely California
is awakening to the realisation
that we cannot go on like this.
People are just fed up with
the disregard shown by those
in office. If they don't care,
then we the people must care.
The people of California are
beginning to care.

A dramatic scene from a performance by the Repertory Dance
Company. This Company, led by Astor Johnson, also made TV
appearances last year.

Theatre Guild to do

TV play

"THE Scent of Jasmines"
has nothing to do with Bar-
nabas girlfriend's perfume. It is
the name of Slade Hopkinson's
new play.
Slade is Artistic Director of
the Caribbean Theatre Guild,
and when the group was ap-
proached by TTT's Farouk
Mohammed to do a half-hour
length local TV play, Slade
took the opportunity to write
a play especially for television
and to use it as teaching
material to illustrate to the
group the differences between
acting for thie stage and for
The play 'is based on the
eternal triangle situation. It is
set among i.middle class West
Indians, speaking standard

English. One of the main
characters is Andre, a writer in
the process of leaving an alco-
holic wife,to off to Toronto.
His mistress, with whom he
communicates through tele-
pathy, is slightly paipsy.
The play is the Group's
third since its inception in
1970. Its other productions
have been Jack Archibald's
"Rose Slip", and Wole Soyinka's
"Lion, and Jewel". "Rose Slip"
was performed at Carifesta in
August last year.
This will be the first of
TTT's local drama productions
for 1973. So far in its projection
of local drama, the station has
put on about four half-hour
productions and has paid $1,000
to each of the companies





Ph ne 32 768 ., Oile 3 -31. Phone:


youge o'oo

- -h~sh I ,I

~ _I I ~_ I1PI ~



THE 479th anniversary
of the discovery of the Isle
of Pines by Christopher
Columbus will be com-
memorated in June.
The progress of the Isle
of Pines made by the Revo-
lution in housing, dams,
schools and highways is
gradually erasing the shame-
ful state of oblivion in
which the island was kept
by past governments (while
a handful of rich land-
owners profited from its
natural resources).
The Isle of Pines was
discovered on June 3, 1494,
by Christopher Columbus
during his second voyage
to the Americas, but it was
abandoned for four cen-
turies and it became a
pirates' hideaway.
In the 1920's the despotic
government of Machado built
an enormous jail on it for
political prisoners (ironically it
was named the "Model Prison").
In 1954 Fidel Castro was im-
prisoned there after his attack
on the Moncada barracks on
July 26, 1953.


The Isle of Pines, a "Treasure
Island" of pirate legend is now
called the Isle of Youth because
of the enormous numbers of
young people who work and
study there.
The islands' population of
10,000 in the 50's has grown
to around 40,000 forcing such
an increase in housing con-
struction that there are more
buildings underway at present
than all those built between
1959 and 1972.
New villages and modern
factories have gone up as well
as 14 dams (with a 200 million
cubic metre capacity) to guaran-
tee the irrigation of the agri-
cultural plans which have trans-
formed the island.

The swift launch "Kometa", with a capacity for 120 persons, now travels to
and from the Isle of Pines.

There are around 20 storage
plants for minerals, fish, meat,
milk; in addition, a number of
highways are being built such
as the "4 vias" uniting Nueva
Gerona, the island's capital,
with La Fe, the island's second
town, thereby solving the big
problem of fruit and vegetable
Several 500-pupil boarding
schools are in operation. At
these schools, junior-high stu-
dents from all over Cuba re-
ceive free education, school
materials, food and clothing.
These young people spend
most of their time studying
and helping in the fruit harvest.
The rapid development of
the island caused serious air
and sea transportation problems,
so commercial flights were in-
creased and new ferry boats
The Soviet-built "Kometa"
ferry holds 120 people and
crosses the 100 kilometres be-
tween Isle de Pines and the
mainland in only two hours.



The National Institute for
Forestry Development is carry-
ing out plans for the restoration
of forests which were indis-
criminately cut down in the
past in the south of the island.
The Isle of Pines is marching
forward with a young, en-
thusiastic population.

The Isleof Youth, so called because of the great numbers of young people
who study and work there.

THE Tanzanian minister for
foreign affairs, John Malecala,
told a World Peace Council
delegation currently in Dar es
Salaam that Tanzania would
pay any price for the African
liberation struggle.
He said because of the blind
policies of the racists in South
Africa and the Portuguese colo-
nies of Angola, Mozambique
and Guinea-Bissau, Africa is
forced to retaliate through
armed struggle for liberation.
The minister warned that

African co

soon an attack might be alunched
soon an attack might be
launched against Zambia and
Tanzania because these coun-
tries cannot be complacent to
their pledge to assist the task of
liberating the whole continent.
But, he declared, the armed
struggle in Africa was not waged
for its own sake.
The three-man delegation
assured the minister of the
world's admiration and respect
for the stand taken by Tan-
zania in positively assisting the
African Liberation struggle.


break relations



Lebanese weekly magazine,
Al-Usbu' Al-Arabia reports that
five African states in succession
will severe their relations with
Israel after issuing statements
condemning suspicious Israeli
activity in their countries and
Israeli expansionist occupation
The magazine, which attri-
butes its report to informed
sources, adds that these coun-
tries are the Central African

Republic, Dahomey, Togo,
Sierra Leone and Senegal.
The magazine says that Arab
diplomatic activities carried out
by both Libya and Saudi Arabia
have made this possible.
The magazine further says
that in the face of this, the
Israeli government has decided
to send Foreign Minister Abba
Eban in the wake of the Israeli
agricultural minister on an
African tour to save what he can.



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the air conditioning people

3-5 Duncan Street, Port-of-Spain.
Phones: 62-35883 -3 7962

North East Drive. Tarouba Road,
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P?-ones: 65-31910 -- 12



POs OF SPN hens




lit SAN~


The dry

season of

OUR DRY SEASON is the time for Camboulay,
bushfires, Hosay and Carnival. The poet has already
warned us that they are identical with revolution.
Because throughout our history they have been used
as vehicles of social protest.
On the 26th of this month we'll mark the third Anniversary
of the February Revolution. On this very day in '69, Roland
Michener, the Canadian Governor-General was blocked by a
human column of students from entering the gates of UWI.
This was done as an act of protest against racial discrimination
directed at West Indian students on the Sir George Williams
University campus in Canada.
Commemorating these events in '70, a group of about 200,
including angry University students, marched on the Royal
Bank of Canada on Independence Square. When some of the
leaders tried to enter the Bank there was a violent clash with
the police.. Many of them sought refuge in the sanctuary of the
Roman Catholic Cathedral. Heaven alone knows what instincts
drove them there because, ironically, in the period of Roman
Imperialism the slave who managed to reach such a holy place
in the flight from his master's brutality was entitled to his


The next day, however, the Police arrested and jailed several
of the demonstrators in a pre-dawn raid which has turned out
to be the first of a series probably not yet ended. Darbeau was
charged for assaulting a policeman, others were charged for
violating the sanctity of a place of public worship. To take
such action the Attorney-General had to revive an imperialist
law which was rotting on the Statute Book for more than a
The prisoners were granted bail, and on their release they
were surprised to receive a hero's welcome from thousands
standing in front of the Courthouse and in Woodford Square
which Williams had once re-named the University but which
the February Revolution designated the People's Parliament.
In the last issue of our paper we printed photographs of that
University and the People's Parliament to contrast the politics
of hte Old Order with that of the New, and to remind ourselves
of this month and its significance for that Revolution.
At the Tapia House, we have from the start insisted on
viewing the events of February 1970 as a change which
amounted to a revolution the full consequences of which we
are yet to see.


A prison of air is worse than one of iron. For the first time
in 10 years, people, long since disillusioned by the 1956
Movement, came to realise that they were not thinking in
isolation but that the large majority in fact were ready to
make the breakaway to something new. Seeing clearly through
the fraud of Doctor Politics we resolved then and there to
demolish the old PNM-DLP racist regime and establish a new
social, economic and political order.
We have not yet succeeded in bringing the institutions of
that new order into being but we know that whatever we
build must finish with white privilege and must be motivated by
the unity of the Africans and Indians who have traditionally
inhabited the lower regions of the colonial and neo-colonial
society. 1970 has impressed that point indelibly on the mind
of the country and the world.
So long as our actions continue to be motivated by the
noble ideal of an equal place for all/to be guided by a clear
vision of what is true' and what is false, the new world that
we seek is sure one day to replace the old.
A Revolution is not the same thing as a military coup
which manages to remove the government and seize the reins
of office. A Revolution may or may not involve this. But in
Tapia we do not believe that the ideals of the new movement
must necessarily be written in the people's blood.
A People's War may be in the offing, but it can be won
only when the defence of these ideals becomes so necessary
that the citizens can see that without even being told.






Anni vers r
.! 7r..~ 5~ 7

Iw -v



A g

THE THIRD ANNIVERSARY of the February Revolution finds the country excited
by the prospect of a second premature election but confused about what that prospect
means.The contradiction mirrors an imperfeciunderstanding of how 1970 made a difference
Even affiliates of the new movement are flirting with the notion that because the PNM
are still in office and lording it over a long-suffering people, the old regime remains intact.
"What revolution can there have been, when we did not seize the power?"
Well, we insist as we did on March 19, 1970, that at the end of February, something of
extraordinary dimensions happened. When the country abandoned law and order and
took position behind the NJAC and the movement, our accumulated frustrations of a
decade suddenly exploded.
When on the afternoons of March 4, 5, and 6, those hopeful citizens assembled in the
public place, the Little Kingdom lost its base. It was the beginning of a successful revolt
against Afro-Saxon self-contempt. It was the culmination of forces long at work. In the
context of our particular political history, that was nothing short of revolution.
February was the important
time not April. A revolution is
not by any means merely a LLOYD BEST
military insurrection, least of
all when the plot is but an
allegation trumped up one eve- help. We have never built a the perception of Reaction also
ning by the Caesar. A revolu- genuine party, we are now changes and the Caesar inevit-
tion is a* historical develop- learning how you do it. We are ably tightens up the screws.
ment that at bottom destroys learning it ent easy. We are
institutions by removing any searching as we are learning. Shanty Town and Caroni of
trust the people once reposed And all kinds of little special- 1970 are not possible in that
in them. .. same way again.


In Trinidad & Tobago, this
morning, there is no longer any
House of Parliament that repre-
sents the people. On March 4,
1970, 10,000 appeared in
Shanty Town and the Parlia-
ment refused to notice. Both
Government and Opposition:
then were present but that
difference did not amount to
anything because the system as
a whole was dead. The 1971
election only proved it.
In the three years which
have passed away, the founda-
tions of the old regime have
vanished. The Pussonal Mon-
arch is governing now by an
odd but necessary mixture of
National Consultation and Police
Shootouts. What chance is there
of this thing lasting?
It does not have the power
brokers, not in the Labour
Congress, not in the Chamber,
not even in the Public Service.
No section of the country is so
sanguine of the Government's
future as to take an open
stand against our movement.
When a Caesar does not know
his allies, he is nothing but a
living dead.
The PNM and by extension,
its racist twin, the DLP are
finished, we are certain. As are
all the carbon copies you can
find. You can tell that we have
turned a corner if only by the
sale: of weekend papers. There
is a desperate expectancy you
simply cannot miss.
We have never changed our
politics not without imperial

purpose groupings are discover-
ing that their doings count
and make a difference.
The new regime is building
up its own foundations. Step
by step we are closing in on
Some of us are doubtless,
very worried about the absence
of a party. But the great
organizations of the people in
the past were never worked out
in advance by those pragmatic
theoreticians who announce
their formations in the daily


As C. L. R. James has put
it, the organisation will come
"as Lilburne's Leveller party
came, as the sections of the
popular societies of Paris in
1793, as the Commune in 1905,
with not a single soul having
any concrete ideas about them
until they appeared in their
power and their glory".
All that each of us should
do, is to continue working
where we are able. In 1968
and 1969, the conventional
thinkers were insisting on a
party. In 1970, however, it was
the 'intermediate political in-
stitutions" that we did not
even know about, which came
on stage and stole the show.
That is the way it always
happens in the early phase of
epoch-making. In the later phase
you have to plan it because


Planning the consummation
of the February Revolution
means now identifying the poli-
tically significant events. The agi--
tation of the earlier phases has
prepared the country for a
lasting alignment of forces be-
cause it has exposed the funda-
mental issues and forced every-



y Revolution


one to see the side on which
his bread is buttered.
The politically significant
events are those which can
give material expression to prior
psychological alignment. Be-
cause people are afraid and
unsure and inexperienced, for

an event to become significant,
it must first possess the essential
attributes of legitimacy. That is-
why among the most revolu-
tionary work going on in the
country at this moment is the
work being undertaken by the
housewives not the his-

trionic sagatinging demonstra-
tions but the quiet offensive of
probing issues.
In this perspective, the Con-
stituent Assembly which we
are to have in March could
be the most potent develop-
ment of all. All the old-time
parties should oppose it because
it could put an end to old
When the Assembly comes
to discuss the fundamentals,
the Little King has to oppose it.
The proposals coming from
the people are diametrically
opposed to Monarchy which,
even in Republic dress, en-
shrines the principle of im-
mutable inequality in the eyes
of God.
The form of the popular
proposals may be conservative
as they often were in 1970
and again in 1972, when even
a continuation of the English
Monarchy was sometimes ad-
vanced as a counter to the
ravages and brutalisations of



home-grown Doctor Politics.
Curious, no doubt but basic-
ally sound, if you are prepared
to understand what people
mean, not what they say.
Our people are searching
for a new morning and those
whose fortunes are hitched to

yesterday are bound to come
down on the other side.
Another major confronta-
tion is brewing. Caesar will
oppose the people with his
monarchical republic. We shall
soon see how genuine was the
revolution we embarked upon
in 1970.











16 Henry St. P.O.S.




C l Clico a company of
West Indians, formed for the
economic upliftment of PEOPLE.
Growing from humble beginnings to one
of the largest financial institutions indigenous to
the Caribbean. Assets for the security of our
policy holders now total over


The Growth is UP



_ ___~~_

IN THE LAST section,
we looked at the manner
in which the structure of
West Indian society influ-
enced cricket in the West
Indies. In this section we
deal primarily with culture.
Violence is nothing new to
non white West Indians. We
were born into it during the
days of slavery and grew up in
a system characterized by
violence. The white master
was violent to us and we
retaliated by being violent to
him, but more often than not
we retaliated in the socially
expected manner, that is of
being violent to each other and
among ourselves. Let us look
more closely at the resultant
interplay between structure
and culture in terms of the
violent outcome.


Differentiation in West In-
dian society along lines of race
colour, class and power had a
number of important conse-
quences for the darker skinned
members. It created the frame-
work for frustration.
At the same time, the cul-
tural dimension in West Indian
society which emphasized
things white and de-empha-
sized things non white, not
only buttressed the hitherto
described structural dimen-
sions of West Indian society,
but created a climate which
favoured slavish emulation
among men white West Indians
to the dominant European
cultural ethos.
Such emulation was not,
however, rewarded by upward
mobility in West Indian
society. The result was frustra-
tion which bespoke aggression
and violence.
Non' whites set out to out-
perform whites in all facets of
European culture. There was
the dress, the speech, the cul-
inary habits and there was


The thirst for recognition
produced non white cricketers
superior to white cricketers in
every department of the game,
but as in every other walk of
West Indian life, these West
Indians were denied entrance
into the top echelons of West
Indian cricket society.
Some exploded in anger and
were destroyed, sometimes vio-
lently. There was, for example,
the Jamaican, Hylton, who was
hanged for the murder of his
wife and there was Gilchrist,
who was hounded out of West
Indian cricket by allegations
of ungentlemanly conduct (by
European definitions, of
Others like Walcott appeared
to have retired from the game
prematurely, and as we have
seen, not only re-appeared in
the form of other cricketers
by coaching others to great-
ness, but also helped to under-
mine the very foundation
which had conspired to deny
him his just rewards on
grounds other'than cricketing
But most sublimated their
aggression into the only
socially approved channel
which favoured its sublimation
with impunity, i.e. cricket
itself. This brings me to the
question of violence, which in
so far as it exists, must surely







Maurice St Pierre continues from last week

be an outgrowth of the vio-
lent nature of white-non white
social relationships.
When Learie Constantine
almost immobilised the
Honourable F.S.G. Calthorpe,
captain of the 1926 M.C.C.
Touring Team, cricket captain
of an English County and an
English aristocrat, he was in a
real sense striking out at the
embodiment of his own frus-
tration and that of the stratum
of West Indian society of
which he was a part), but in a
socially acceptable manner -
on the cricket field.
Even so his colleagues had
asked him to desist because it
was felt that this would cause
"trouble". He was told, "do
not bump that ball at that
man...The bowling is obviously
too fast for him, and if you
hit him and knock him down,
there'll be a hell of a row, and
we don't want to see you in
any such mess. Stop it."
"Beyond a Boundary", p.
Of George John, the Trini-
dad and West Indian fast
bowler, James in the same
book writes, "If he hadbeen
an Italian of the Middle Ages,
he would have been called
Furioso. He had an intimidat-
ing habit of following down
after the delivery if the ball
was played behind the wicket
...Almost every ball he was
rolling up his sleeves like a
man about to commit some
long premeditated act of
violence" (p.81).
Wes Hall was, in his heyday,
credited with being the fastest
bowler in the world, and he
took one of the longest run-
ups in thi history of the game.
Roy Gilchrist, of whom men-
tion was made, despite his
slender build and relative lack
of height for a fast bowler,
was quoted as saying that

when he runs up to bowl all
he sees are pads standing in
the way of the stumps which
it is his aim to hit.
It is possible to argue that
it was not the combination of
structurally induced aggres-
sion and culturally predisposed
violence which has produced
this long list of West Indian
fast bowlers, but rather the
hardness of West Indian
wickets and relative absence
of heaviness in the atmos-
phere, which favours getting
a batsman out by sheer pace.
But Australia, too, has hard
wickets, and though that
country has produced Miller,
Lindwall, Ron Archer, David-
son and Meckiff, none posses-
sed either the pace of Hall or
the ferocity of George John.


Again one may argue that
England produced Larwood,
Voce, Tyson, Trueman and
Snow. But England cannot
claim to have produced fast
bowlers in such constant suc-
cession as have the West
Indies. This is so in spite of
the fact that the Trinidad
wicket favours swing bowling
early on the first day of a
In the realm of batting,
violence is even more pro-
nounced. The West Indies have
produced such ferocious
hitters of the ball as Learie
Constantine, Headley, Weekes,
Walcott, Sobers, Collie Smith,
Kanhai and Lloyd.
Constantine, although he
was more famous as a bowler,
hit especially the pace bowlers
with tremendous power.
Headley, despite his relative
smallness of stature and the
lack of support from other
West Indian batsmen, was no

mean hitter of the ball.
Weekes, though the shortest
of the three Ws was described
after the 1950 tour to Eng-
land, as having batted with a
One particular innings of his,
of 94 against the! M.C.C. in
the third test, in Guyana
during the 1953/4 tour illus-
trates this point. Wardle the
slow left-arm spinner bowled
from the northern end to
Weekes, who having very early
spotted the delivery as being
a trifle short, jumped around,
it seemed, so that his body
was facing a westerly direction
and drove (one can't say pull,
though it really was a pull) the
ball to the square leg boun-
dary. The ball ricocheted off
the railing, the impact remov-
ing amounts of the whitewash.
Even this removal may not be
lacking in significance.
Walcott, who is much bigger
than Weekes, was described
after his 168 not out at Lords
in 1950, as a batsman who
makes a bat look like "a tea-
spoon" and bowling like "weak
tea". He had hit the ball with
such force off the backfoot
that it is said that on one
occasion an English fieldsman
ran alongside the ball for some-
time before attempting to pick
it up.
Though half of Walcott's
size, it is perhaps not surprising
that his protege, Kanhai, should
also hit the ball with such
power. Indeed, his innings of
251 not out against Victoria
during the 1960 tour to Austra-
lia was an explosion which
hastened Meckiff's demise from
test cricket.
Sobers and Lloyd are both
left handed batsmen with high
backlifts which, in part, account
for the force with which they
hit the ball.
To be sure, Australia and

England have produced
scoring and hard hitting b.
men. The Australians have k
Trumper, Woodful, Ponsford,
Bradman, Morris, Bill Brown,
Harvey, Barnes, Miller and
None, however, not even
Bradman, who once scored a
century in three eight-ball overs,
or Benaud who hit eight sixes
in a Festival Match at Scar-
borough, England, could be
described as possessing the mur-
derous hitting power of Weekes,
Walcott or Lloyd.
England has produced Grace,
Woolley, Ranjitsinghji, Dexter,
Hammond, Compton, Graveney,
Cowdrey, May, Milburn, and
Boycott. However, with the
possible exception of Dexter
and Milburn (never a regular
member of the England team)
none matched the hitting power
of the West Indians. Rather,
Woolley has been associated
with grace, Graveney's batting
has been described as poetry
in motion and Cowdrey as an
exquisite timer of the ball.


It should be noted that the
West Indies also produced bats-
men of the calibre of Nunes,
Grant, Tarilton, Challenor,
Stollmeyer, Gomez, Goddard,
Trestrail and Bayley who were
white, but none was renowned
for his hard hitting.
A number of very important
points begin to emerge from
foregoing. In the first place,
it seems that the fastest bow-
lers and the hardest hitting
batsmen all come from the
West Indies. In the second
place, it seems that these
players are all non-white.
It is a well known fact that
race and their colour were the
principal means by which West
Indian society was stratified.
This meant that this caste like
stratification system, lacking
as it did a powerful divine
rationalization, such as religion,
as was the case in India, was
bound to produce frustrations
which ultimately sought ag-
gresive outlets.


In the West Indies, the racist
ideology which asserted the
supremacy of whites soon broke
down as the transparency of
this ideology was laid bare on
the cricket field. However, be-
cause other outlets for chan-
nelling aggression were closed,
either by cultural prescriptions
(such as "leh de white man
rule") or structural constraints
(such as white ownership and
control of means of production
which supported their claims
to make the rules of reward
and punishment), non white
West Indian cricketers chose
the only socially approved out-
let in the game of cricket
This coupled with perfor-
mance before an audience of
West Indians, equally emphatic
on the question of violent and
aggressive cricket, conspired to
produce a change in this "beauti-
ful, difficult English game".
As we shall see next week, not
only has cricket been functional
in this purely cathartic sense
for 'West Indians, but it has
facilitated a degree of upward
mobility, which has reduced
frustration and influenced the
stratification system away from
a purely ascriptive one towards
one based on achievement.


I wake the night
to see a man die
as he walking the road
of this island.-
I see how he stop
and walk in the sun
car passing he by
till he fall in the gutter
like a unknown sailor,
his family on his lips.

As I could hear them singing
Chalky, Valentino and Stalin,
sidestepping sedition
to tell how men walking
this island of Trinidad.

Leaders like cane
rancid after fire,
building they life
on stilts.
Moko Jumbie grabbin

The Road

Money underhand
to bank in Switzerland

Hear that rumble steel sound
one hundred men beating
one pan
one thousand foot shufflin
one shuffle
Tokyo, All Stars and Invaders
Harmonites, Starlift and Despers
walking the road as one.

Some whistlin to speak
of doom an revenge
walking like Robbers
rong tong.
Changing they names
talking of Africa
an lands where they wander
carrying guns make from paper,
big speech for money
paid by the Jumbie.

You could a hear them sweet old minors
Chinee Patrick, A ttilla, Lord Executor,
talking high treason
to tell how men was walking
this island of Trinidad.

See Devil
beating Dragon
chain like we.
Burroquite playing ass
for all to see, but
them playing smart man
sitting in the stand.

Hear that rappin skin sound
one hundred men beating o
one drum
ten thousand fist raised

one power
Port of Spain, Caroni Tunapuna
People's Parliament to Carrera
walking the road as one.

Land full a talk
Bois man deadin
white mask Grenade
on he grave.
When Ash Wednesday come
men still walking the road,
catching catch ass
in another man's mass,
but some walking the land
to form a new band

Hear that rumble steel sound
ten thousand men beating
one pan
one million foot shufflin
one shuffle
Port of Spain, San Fernando, Arima
Scarborough, Charlotteville and Roxborough
walking the road as one.
Christopher Laird

A lesson in Afro American culture

demic had an ironic but
revealing experience of
Afro-American culture in
the US earlier this month.
Dennis Forsythe, a lec-
turer at Sir George Williams
University, and author of
the three-part series pub-
lished in TAPIA recently,
called the experience "a
lesson I won't forget".
The unforgettable ordeal be-
gan when Forsythe, driving
from Montreal to give a lecture
on Afro-American culture at
Plattsburgh State University,
New York, had an accident in
which his car turned over on
the icy highway.
A chain of events thereafter
resulted in his being arrested
twice, hauled up before a judge
for hitchhiking on the highway,
and jailed because he could not
pay a $10 fine. All in a matter
of hours.
In a letter to TAPIA des-
cribing the incident, Forsythe
said it was "a turn of fate
which should not be the least
surprising to anyone familiar
with the black experience, but
nevertheless shocking and grue-


a new arts


FROM Jamaica comes the
news that a new arts and poetry
magazine is being launched.
NOW, as it is called, has as
its main aim the provision of
an outlet for the younger West
Indian poets and writers whose
work will be published along-
side that of established writers
from the Caribbean and abroad.
Submissions of poetry, short
stories, articles on aspects of
contemporary poetry or art,
suitable graphics and reviews
will be welcome.
According to a letter from
Stewart Brown, one of the
people behind the venture,
NOW cannot afford to pay
contributors. The hope is to
keep costs down and to reach
the widest possible audience.
A subscription of four issues
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some when you come to feel it
at the personal level, in your
bones and in your intellect".
Black, stranded and helpless,
on the cold highway, he was
advised to phone a police patrol-
man to pick him up. The patrol-
man came and decided to charge
him for speeding "on the ab-
surd reasoning that since there
was no apparent obstruction
to my vehicle, then the only
reason for my mishap was my
'speed' "
No judge could be found
and the patrolman dropped the
idea and abandoned Forsythe
on the highway with the warn-
ing not to beg a lift from
Without any money (his
wallet had been lost in the car)
in the midst of nowhere,
bleeding from; injuries and
stricken by the Wang Yu, the
lecturer had to beg the use of a
telephone.No contact, and there
was nothing to it but to take a
chance with passing cars.


As black luck would have it,
the first car that stopped was
that of the same patrolman,
Sgt. R. M. Vogt, Viet Nam war
veteran with a hard-hat's im-
patience with the troubles of
gookss" or "niggers".
With Forsythe under arrest
in his car, the patrolman was
determined to nail the hapless
academic for whatever charge
he could. Travel documents
were all right, but explanations
and protests were to no avail.
"By now," Forsythe writes,
"the situation had stopped being
amusing, I boiled deep down,
to nigger depth, but remained
cool, speechless, in reflection,
thinking of all the implications
of my trying harassment: would
they have arrested a white
professor for hitchhiking?
Would anybody in his right
mind be hitchhiking in sub-
zero temperature?"
This time a judge was found,
a stereotype, Forsythe says,
of that "senile, hard-of-hearing,
deranged county judge who
could not know what time of
day it is."
Guilty as charged; $10 fine
or five days'. Marched upstairs

to a cell, the luckless academic
spent several hours "partly
fuming at it all, partly listening
to the bleatings and coughings
of other prisoners, and then I
dozed off to sleep with the
stink and smell of prison all
around me".

It was hours before libera-
tion came in the form of a
fellow academic and a large
black student body.
"It felt food to see those
black faces, many of whom I
had never seen before, but who
were there to see that justice

was done. I went away strength-
ened in my belief about the
need for collective action. How
glorious it would be if, in time
of need, black people would
rally to the side of their needed
brethren, and protect them,
with their bodies if need be."

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OCCASIONALLY one can pick up an American novel and from the
dust jacket learn with some amazement that the author, at least before he
had become successful, had been lumberjack, a house-painter, a carpenter
or a construction worker. This has always seemed to me to illustrate a
certain genuinely democratic current in American culture.
In the West Indies, there has been a recent tradition in which the writer
emphasizes his peasant/folk grounding at least and often at most up to the
age of adolescence. None as far as one is aware has ever been either a farm-
boy or labourer. Among us a writer like C. L. R. James is close to the.
Latin American situation.
In Beyond the Boundary, James, with a surprising and above all admirable candour,
confessed: "I became a British intellectual long before I was ten, already an alien in my
own environment, among my own people, even my own family." (p. 28) This kind of
statement only confirms the views of James' critics that his imaginative writing clearly
shows him to be "alienated from the proletariat".
I am not sure that this notion of alienation serves any useful purpose except to
identify a context of our times, that of populist nationalism which attaches a very
special value content to a certain obsession with "returning to one's roots".
James was a young bourgeois intellectual in the Cipriani era, when a white man of
privileged antecedents (in a khaki suit) established an alliance with "the barefoot man".
This must have involved a peculiar
empathy bridging a recognisable de-
gree of social difference.
James' work reflects both realities,
and with what seems to us a remark-
able absence of guilt feelings. It is GU
this absence of the morbidity of
guilt, such as would appear later in a
novel like Lamming's Season of
Adventure, which has made critics
just a bit unkind to James' image as
the key figure in West Indian popu-


In any case, in order to see James
in perspective, it is important to
supply a missing term and see that, if
it is valid to speak of his alienation
from the proletariat, it is equally
important to stress his alienation
from the bourgeois assumptions of
his upbringing.
,The question of the responsibility
of the writer has been a far more
heated, far more bitterly argued one
in Latin American countries. To
begin with, the writer is, almost'by
definition, of middle class origins, in
some association with the privileged
groups in the society, for these are
countries in which, in general, literacy
has been a privilege.
The Latin American writer is or
was condemned to direct himself to
the audience he is indicting. His
purpose has often been to pass on
his own sense, of guilt to a small
national audience. Some of the re-
proaches he directs at his potential
national audience are reminiscent of
those of West Indian writers.


Mario Vargas Llosa, the Peruvian
novelist who like many of his col-
leagues lives by marketing his novels
for an international audience, and
sitting in as writer in residence in
American and British universities,
claimed sometime ago: "The writer in'
Latin America cannot live from his
writings. He must struggle desperately
to find time to write. Some writers
receive royalties which permit them
to smoke cigarettes o' ride on buses.
But that's all"
It should be remarked that at
one time, Latin American writers
were supported by their governments
by being given diplomatic posts. For
example, Miguel Angel Asturias, Nobel
Prize winner, is Ambassador for
Guatemala in Paris.
However, as the degree of political
militancy has increased among writers
who tend to be on the left in their
views, such appointments have de-
creased except among left wing gov-
ernments such as Cuba and Chile.
A more amusing aspect of the
relationship of artist to society is
connected with the high incidence of
poets in any Latin American capital.
A German critic once remarked that
when he first went to Lima, Peru, he
noticed that almost every person
introduced to him was specially re-
ferred to as a poet.
After a little enquiry he discovered

Leader of the Chilean Movement
of the Revolutionary Left Miguel
that to have published a small volume
of verse tended to improve an aspiring
young man's chances of getting ahead
in his job and indeed of getting a
good job.
How do writers, that is professional
writers, see themselves and their role?
I shall limit myself here largely to
quoting a few statements. Mario
Vargas Llosa has expressed the fol-
lowing rather picturesque view to
explain the recent boom in Latin
American writing:

I think there is a close relationship
between the apogee of the novel
and the state of crisis in the society
which inspires the novel. It seems to
me that novelists are a bit like
vultures and the food they most
need is carrion, the carrion of
history Societies in crisis,
corroded by internal struggle and
contradictions, stimulate the im-
agination.-The great Russian novel
in the nineteenth century was in-
spired by a society about to die; a
society which was practically a
cadaver, which inspired Tolstoy
Dostoevsky. In a way, this is what


A' r~





writer's role?

is happening in Latin America,
which is practically a cadaver now.
It is a continent which is nearly
carrion, and the vultures we
novelists emerge. In one way we
precipitate the apocalypse, from
which another Latin America will
rise. At the same time we rescue'
Latin America, saving it from ex-
tinction with words.
(Caribbean Review, v. 1, n. 1, p 4,

This grim apocalyptic vision of
Latin America which has a kind of
secular Calvinistic tone about it is
more than matched by the grim
destinies which Vargas Llosa's charac-
ters suffer in his novels, caught in the
iron grip of their fate. His view of the
Peruvian writer's fate in his own
society is equally desolate. If he
survives, it is as a broken, castrated
Writers like Vargas Llosa who
have declared their commitment to
socialism and have made known their
support for the Cuban revolution
have nevertheless come in for heavy
criticism by students and other mili-
tants. They have been attacked for
not chronicling the guerilla struggle
and the "new men" who were being





forged in this struggle. They have
been attacked for not themselves
becoming guerillas.
Julio Cortazar, an Argentine writer
living in Paris, has replied to this
rather ingeniously by arguing that
the writer wages a guerilla war on the
Outmoded language of his time and
.his society. In so far as the society
is constantly degrading the meanings
of words, the writer by making
language accord with experience, pro-
vides us with the truth of our ex-
Thus the task of the artist is "to
create the language of the revolution,
to wage a relentless war against
linguistic and aesthetic forms which
will prevent coming generations from
seizing in all its power and beauty,
the continent-wide undertaking to
create an entirely new Latin America
from its very roots down to its last


The demands on the writer have
ranged from the sublime to the
ridiculous. Jose Antonio Portuondo,
a Cuban critic, has in recent times
provided examples of the latter.
Disappointed at the second novel
of his countryman Jose Soler Puig,
Portuondo was led to suggest: "It
may be that had we managed to get
Comrade Puig to dedicate himself to,
let us say, buying copra for INRA, to
meeting the people at work and living
the realities of his time, perhaps he
would have written a second novel
infinitely superior to the first".
(Estetica Revolucion, p. 75)
On another occasion, Portuondo
again made a proposal which illustrates
the anxiety in Cuba to break down
the barrier between manual labour
and intellectual labour. It would
appear that a part of the qualifi-
cations one requires in order to get
into the Cuban Foreign Service is
physical toughness and strength. You
have as proof of this to climb to the
top of Pico Turquino, Cuba's highest
peak, five times, Portuondo there-
fore dared to suggest at a seminar
that every artist who leaves Cuba on a
scholarship ought to be made to
climb the Pico Turquino five times
as well.
Continued on Page 11

Poverty stares you in the face a market in Brazil.








From Page 10
It is clear that writers are a prey
varying emotions, living at the time
when the overwhelming need seems
to be for action. This is the mood
expressed for example by the chief
protagonist of Carpentier's novel Los
pasos perdidos, (The Lost Steps).
At the end of an adventure in
which he has ventured into the
its marvellous character as landscape
and American historical corridor,
living with a small band of pioneers
who found a new city in the wilder-
ness, our hero is suddenly seized by
what to him must be an unwhole-
some perception:
The truth, the unbearable truth -
I now see clearly is that the peo-
ple in this backland never took me
seriously. I was a phony, a fly-by-
night visitor... New worlds have to
be lived before they are explained.
They ought to live here and not
here through intellectual conviction.

They simply believe they ought to
live here and not somewhere else.
They prefer this present to the
present of the Makers of the Apo-
calypse. He who strives too hard to
understand, he who suffers- the
anxieties of a conversion who needs
to think in terms of renunciation
when he adopts the life-style of
those who are forging their destiny
on this primal ooze, locked in a
struggle with mountains and forests,
is a vulnerable man ...
The artist is a vulnerable man
because he is condemned to be an
insider who will always be something
of an outsider until the coming of the
mythical new society. Critical of the
bourgeoisie of which he is a product,
he is yet in practice unsure of his
status with the dispossessed.
An interesting example of this is

Sebastian Salazar Bondy, a Peruvian
writer, now dead. Bondy tried to
create a popular theatre, meaning a
theatre for the people, in Lima, which
apparently attracted mostly middle
class patrons.
In a short play, El rabdomante,
he set out his own sense of defeat in
a vital need: water (freedom) when
there is a drought. He goes to a place
where there is a drought and offers
his services to the authorities. He
performs his rights but the rain does
not come.
Three dispossessed characters have
observed his actions and repeat them,
and this time the rain does fall.
There is revolt and the rabdomante,
now free, declares that he has nothing
to fear from the dispossessed; after


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Up -

all, had he not played a vital role on
their behalf. The play ends in the
following way.
El rabdomante: I have nothing to fear. I
brought them the truth. They can use it as
they see fit. It is their right.
1st Dispossessed: And that fellow there,
who is he? He's not like us! Is he perhaps
one of them?
2nd Dispossessed: If he is not like us, he
must be on their side.
The Dispossessed approach the rabdomante
aggressively, who awaits them serenely.
They surround him. First Dispossessed
raises his fist and knocks the victim down.
The others jump on him in rage and beat
him savagely, with shouts.
In 1969, Sven Lindquist was in
Peru observing the activities of the
new "Revolutionary" military govern-
ment of General Juan Velasco Al-
varado. In his book The Shadow:
Latin America faces the seventies, he
records a personal observation of
General Velasco, which is fascinating
in the light of the play Elrabdomate.
Continued on Page 12

From Page 11
It was interesting to study the
shifts in his voice and facial ex-
pression. As long as General Velasco
speaks of the misery of the Peru-
vian people, of six million people
without food and clothing, his
expression is one of paternal pity.
But at the next moment, this same
Peruvian people has become the
"masses" who are 'set in motion',
and it sounds as if he is speaking
of an invasion of cockroaches (p. 213)
"I have always felt" says Julio
Cortazar, "that in Latin America
there is an absence of humour, and
that humour is one of the most
serious things in the world, if you
know how to use it without being a
mere smart-alec".
Cortazar himself has made use of.
a peculiar type of humour, one which
draws more of a smile than laughter
in his war against a bourgeois reader-
ship. In his offbeat way at any rate,
he claims to be a very much com-
mitted writer.
Guillermo Cabrera Infante, a Cuban
writer in exile in London, is a quite
different type of man who, in his one
well known novel Tres Tristes Tigres
shows' himself to be devoted to
humour, in the form, above all, of
the pun. He is a passionate reader of
English, admiring in particular Lewis
Carroll and James Joyce. Thus you
get from him such treats as Arstits
and Philosuffers.
His novel has recently been tran-
slated as Three Trapped Tigers by
Donald Gardner and Suzanne Jill
Levine in collaboration with the
author and has been published by
Harvey and Row. There is a review
of the translation by J. Raban Bilder
in Caribbean Review (vol. iv p. 3).
One of the embarrassments for

the Cuban Revolution in regard to
promotion of more internationally
recognized writers is the fact that their
work at times does not go well with
Revolutionary ideas.
A case in point is Jose Lezama
Lima. Living in Cuba, Lezama has
published a much acclaimed no~"l,
Paradise. But Paradiso is not coily
written in a quite difficult style, its
theme is the growth of artistic voca-
tion and this is tied in with the
homosexual experience of the pro-
As is well known, the Revolu-
tionary leadership was very hostile
to homosexuals and they were treated
very harshly. Some years were to
pass before Fidel admitted that this
policy may have been socially regres-


S Tres Tristes Tigres is a collage, a
novel that is anti-novel, a narrative
of non-events at fetes, driving thru
the streets of Havana, or in other
vague places, such as befall a couple
of vaguely bohemian-tongue-twisting-
town twisting characters. Philosuffers.
The narrator, tongue-in-cheek, is
determined to take the reader round
in circles so that he may be called a
wheel (weal?). And had he thought
of tongue-in-cheek,- he would have
equally spoken of "town-in-cheek"
and perhaps also of tongue-never-in-
The pun, as I said, is Cabrera's
forte. Did we say an anti-novel? Well,
for example, there is a story told
three times in the novel about two
American tourists in Cuba, the
Campbells (of soup fame) and of a

walking stick Mr. Campbell lost.
Three versions.
There is a long section in which
parodies of well known Cuban writers,
Nicolas Guillen and Alejo Carpentier,
for example, are beautifully done. Ini
the case of Guillen, his repetitive
afrocuban Communist Party verse is
cruelly mocked in a way which makes
the parody read perhaps better than
the originals.
But, of course, in Cuba it is a
dangerous thing to Mock the Marxists,
(Marx the Mockists) and Cabrera
must have been writing with one
hand and packing his bag with the

Gran Capitan
Que te proteja Xango
Y te cuide Jemaja
Como no!
Esto lo digo yo!
Last Friday I told a lie, doctor, a
big lie. That boy I told you about
did not really marry me. I got
hooked up with another and he did
not marry anyone, because he was
a homosexual and I knew it from
the first, because he told me. The
truth is that he asked me out
because his parents suspected that
his fried
his friend was more than just a
The above constitutes the whole
of Chapter 7 of the novel.
Elsewhere a girl with bifocals is
is identified as being bi-sexual.
The Three Trapped Tigers are
three tired tigers floating in the
ambiguities of the ambience; this
novel offers us the right-talk of
Batista's Havana at whose heart lay a
nihilism in which the characters, lost
souls, seem to flit and twitter to no
purpose. They are trying to pin up

the Void with a pun.
Cabrera Infante attracts our at-
tention because he is one of a
minority of Latin American writers
who have rejected outright the idea
that the writer has any responsibility
except to his work, or that a necessary
part of his baggage ought to be a
social conscience. Without blinking
and without guilt, he has calmly set
himself up as what the Marxists would
call a decadent bourgeois reactionary.
The writer is a tricky tiger to deal
Three remarks on Three Trapped
Tigers by Cabrera Infante:-

Many people have been astonished-
when I said that I would like the
book to be taken as a huge written
joke. Latin American literature errs
on the side of excessive seriousness,
sometimes solemnity. It is like a
mask of solemn words which writers
and readers put up by mutual con-
sent. T.T.T. is intended to deflate
many of these pretensions. I only
hope that T.T.T. becomes T.N.T.
to them.
I don't believe writers are mission-
aries nor that a writer has any duty
as such. The writer's sole 'duty, if
he has one, is to write as well as he
Since culture, as much as politics,
is no more than a visible and con-
temporary manifestation of that
eternity at the level of man's eyes
which is history, the banning of,
P.M. (a short film made by Cabrera's
brother in 1961 in Cuba) meant
something more than the struggle
for power veiled by Fidel Castro's
speech condemning the film to
I'm referring to that infamous piece
of political deception called "Con-
versations with Intellectuals .
actually the outcome of a typically
totalitarian trial: first the sentence,
then the verdict.




against Australia ended
in the inevitable draw with
the batting strength of
both sides proving itself.
On all but the first day,
the scoring rate was con-
sistently over three runs an
over. If this trend contin-
ues, West Indian spectators
will really e-' "-v them-
selves, for crickc; is never
sweeter than when runs
are flowing from the bat.
By the enc of the first day
the match was already point-
ing towards a draw. Only 190
runs were on the board in
spite of an easy-paced wicket.
On the second day Australia
would have had to accelerate
their scoring tremendously and
try to get us in before the end
of the day.
This they did, but the pro-
blem for them at that stage
was to try and get us out twice
in three days for less than 428
or to find time in the end to
make whatever runs we totalled
in both innings in excess of
of that score.
On such a docile pitch, it
just wasn't on. On the other
hand to beat a team that has
scored 428 in their first innings
was almost impossible. For us
to get them out on the last day

- again a tall task. So the
match went along its merry
batting way to the pointless
last, day.
Clyde Walcott has made
several pleas for more lively
wickets in the West Indies -- if
something is not done the
crowds in the long run may
stop coming to see inconclu-
sive cricket. Guyana has been
experimenting with their test
wicket and it will be interesting
to see what comes of it.
Kanhai has moved quite
smoothly into the captaincy
role he handled his side
quite well on the first day to
limit Australia to a run rate of
about two runs an over this
when one of his frontline bow-,
lers had become an embarrass-
ment after the game was only
half an hour old.


Fortunately Maurice Foster
rose to the occasion and bowled
extremely well. But the pres-
sure on the captain was even
greater on the second day.
Australia was on the go; they
had seen enough of Foster by
then to play him; Inshan Ali
was not well and you could
never be sure what Dowe would
To have limited them under
those conditions, on such a
docile pitch, to three and a

half runs an over was no mean
achievement it is only when
we compare it with the third
day when we averaged four
runs an over against the full
Australian attack, including
several -competent second line
bowlers, that we see hew well
Kanhai did under pressure.
While at the wicket he seemed
to have done an admirable job
as well.


During the critical fourth
wicket stand between Foster
and himself, after a somewhat
shaky start, he settled down
and the commentators were
full of praise for his continuous
counselling of Foster during
moments of uncertainty.
And now for the rest of the
series. Both sides have really
good batting. The tall scores
did not depend on any very
large innings by a single bats-
man. No less than five West
Indian and six Australian bats-
men made useful scores, so the
bowlers on both sides have
their work cut out for them.
Lillee has been brought
down to size and will now be
played entirely on merit he
will have to fight for his wic-
kets as all other bowlers. While
he licks his wounds he must
be looking forward to the
first wicket-in the West Indies
that shows any signs of life.
Australia's slow bowling too
must be giving Chappell some
headaches and maybe their

second test team will show
Lillee, Hammond, Walker and
Massie an all pace attack
with the Chappells and Walters

All signs are that Sobers will
be fit for the second test. This
will certainly change the whole
complexion of the team. If he
is in he will undoubtedly be
used in short spells with the
new ball. Dowe will go so that
another new ball bowler will
have to be brought in to re-
lieve Sobers at one end. Which
all adds up to one of the
present six batsmen being left
When we look at the over-
all effectiveness of the team
Greenidge will be the one to
lose his place. This will entail
making the bold experiment
of opening with the in-form
Foster, but on the hard, fast
West Indian wickets and our
light atmosphere, I don't think
this will be asking too much.


Of course there is one other
possibility here if Derek
Murray shows form behind the
stumps he can be brought in
and asked to perform the tall
task of keeping wicket and
opening the batting.
We are left with deciding
on two bowlers a new ball
bowler and the other spinner.
The former is a wide open
proposition Andy Roberts
(if fit), Shillingford and Phillips
from the Islands and Julien
must all be staking claims.
The Australia vs. Leeward
and Trinidad vs. Barbados
matches must help to resolve

the occasion

this problem. Inshan Ali will
be facing competition from
Holford and Willette for his
place on the team. Here again
the cricket between now and
the second test Barbados vs.
Trinidad, Australia vs. Leeward
Islands and Australia vs. Bar-
bados will put all three
bowlers on show.
We can be a bit more
adventurous with this position
now that Foster has shown
that he can do a bit of the
slow bowling and Gibbs is in
good form.
Subject to performances
between now and the second
test, the following can be an
exciting match-winning eleven
in batting order:-
Fredericks, Murray, Rowe,
Kallicharan, Kanhai, Foster,
Sobers, Julien, Holder, Willette
and Gibbs.
The overall batting strength
is better than the team in the
first test and the bowling
shows more purpose.


_. U_