This upcoming (February 2017) conference, while occasioned by the 30th anniversary of Peepal Tree Press, and hosted by them, promises to explore themes of broader interest to Caribbean writers, readers, critics, and academics. Would be stimulating to be there; hopefully, we’ll have a report from inside the event. Here’s an example of some of what will be covered as quoted from the mailbox:
There’s nothing new about Caribbean writing that looks both in the direction of the physically experienced, remembered or imagined world and other books. Even before Jean Rhys with Sargasso and Jane Eyre, VS Reid was giving a nod to the Aeneid in New Day (and see Emily Greenwood’s Afro-Greeks: Dialogues between Anglo-Caribbean Literature and the Classics), but making connections with the world of the book is only one of the ways in which Caribbean & Black British authors have been writing in relationship to other artistic and cultural forms including the visual arts, popular musics and folk-cultural narratives. Again, a feature of more recent writing (with some earlier pioneers) has been a branching out from the dominant forms of literary realism to exploring the potential of more “popular” genres: police procedurals, crime, noir, science fiction and speculative fiction. This session is an invitation to writers to say something about the connections between their reading and their writing, and for readers and critics to talk about the issues this raises.
•How much does it matter what texts, genres, and cultural forms writers connect to?
•Do some of these speak more closely to Caribbean experiences (whatever they may be!) than others?
•What cultural/historical issues does this raise?
•Does it matter if readers don’t know or don’t spot the “intertexts”?
•And why has it become ever more common?