Tag Archives: discussion

Sunday Reasoning

The research I did about local media (on a whim, really) and posted to this site came in handy when I was invited to speak on media at a reasoning held by the New Grassroots.

I call it a reasoning because with chairs set out in a circular fashion in a small room at the University of the West Indies Open Campus (Antigua and Barbuda), it was intended, I think, to be just that. Not a lecture but a conversation and that it was. That said they did invite some of us who presumably know a thing or two to open the discussion – so it was me and Kadeem Joseph (media), Leonart Matthias (labour),  and Junior Prosper (environment) with a focus in each case on the history of, challenges within, and transformative force of each. Perhaps the poor turnout (and it was poor…very very poor) is reflective of the hesitance to get caught up in any of the politics talk that too often descends in to partisan talk in Antigua and Barbuda. I can relate and the fact that my initial point of contact is a former member of the Cushion Club (the reading club I have volunteered with for many years) was (I joke but it’s true) the first reason I really considered it; the second was, as a journalist and author, I am at heart a storyteller, and I wanted us to know the story of Antigua and Barbuda media – I had gathered the research and I wanted to share it (all credit to those who did the research before me, of course).

It was an interesting discussion – somewhere there’s video which is good because my note-taking game has fallen off – but discussion includes challenging (with facts and grounded analysis) what you’re presented with, and so while I didn’t agree with everything I heard (some of the historical-social dynamics mostly), I learned some things (especially as relates to our environment), and was stimulated by the conversation – and will definitely research/investigate more to learn or unlearn as needed. And I’m glad I was able to contribute to informing, as well, and to helping to make the connections between our past and our future.

Several times, Grassroots members indicated that some of the information presented was brand new to them; some of it shouldn’t be and this raised the question of the the role of the formal education system in increasing this kind of self-knowledge and self-examination.

I do think there are a lot of gaps to be filled in our reading of our history, some more interrogation and supplementing of sources etc. but kudos to Grassroots for trying to get a conversation going. I hope that they work to be vigilant about being non-partisan, remain focused on the issues, and raise the discourse (raising in the sense of bringing it up, raising in the sense of keeping it high). That the turnout was so poor speaks to the uphill battle but as I suggested to them, they are young people au fait with new media, with individual passions, collective knowledge, curiousity, and a voice; and can use other platforms to engage. We need more of that.

Oh, the additional research I did ahead of the reasoning has prompted me to make some small but substantial insertions to the original media research blog post: check it out.


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Gregson Davis, Jamaica Kincaid to Deliver Keynotes at Antigua-Barbuda Conference

This year it’s the 10th anniversary of the annual Antigua and Barbuda Conference. Here’s everything you need to know about the two-day conference. Don’t say I didn’t tell you.

Date: August 6th 2015



3 to 3:30 p.m. – Opening Remarks Paget Henry (Antigua and Barbuda Studies Association) and Allison Hull (University of the West Indies)

3:30 p.m. – 4:50 p.m. Panel One: THE ARTS AND THE GROWTH OF SELF-KNOWLEDGE – PART 1: Presenters: Adlai Murdoch – Writing and the (Re)Definition of ‘Antiguan-ness’; Hazra Medica – Rescuing the ‘Wharf-rat’: Working-class Male Identity in Antigua Literature; Dorbrene O’Marde  –  Reparations Scholarship: Recognition, Justice and Development – Chair: Susan Lowes

5:00 – 6:20 p.m. PANEL TWO: RELIGION IN ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA: CONTINUING THE CONVERSATION Presenters: Elaine Olaoye – Socio-psychological Analysis of Allan Davis’ Theology of Suffering; Valerie Combie – Good Old Time Hymns of Faith: Their Impact on Community Life; Edith Oladele  – A Vision of the Caribbean Church: Indigenous, Diaspora, and Totally Free to Be – Chair: Paget Henry

6:20 – 7:00 p.m. REFRESHMENT BREAK

7:00 – 8:30 p.m. KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Distinguished Professor, Gregson Davis – Sands of Paradise/Sands of Time: Rethinking the Aims of Education for the 21st Century – Chair: Ermina Osoba

8:30 – 9:00 p.m. BOOK LAUNCH Antigua and Barbuda Review of Books, Volume 8, Number 1

Friday, August 7th 2015



12:30 – 1:50 p.m. PANEL THREE: THE ARTS AND THE GROWTH OF SELF-KNOWLEDGE: PART 2 Presenters: Althea Romeo-Mark – An Immigrant Story, the Arts, and Self-Knowledge; Edgar Lake – Rewriting the Archive; Bernadette Farquhar – Pére Labat’s Description of the Making of Bamboula, a Dying Antiguan Culinary Art – Chair: Valerie Knowles Combie

2:00 – 3:20 p.m. PANEL FOUR: THE ANTIGUAN AND BARBUDAN ECONOMY: AN UPDATE Presenters: Don Charles – The Antiguan Economy: Skills Training and Education Requirements for Sustainable Future Growth; Paget Henry – The Antiguan Economy: a Left Perspective; Jay Mandle – Diaspora and Development in the Post-Colonial Period: the Case of Antigua and Barbuda – Chair: Alvette (Ellorton) Jeffers

3:30 – 4:50 p.m. PANEL FIVE ISSUES IN CONTEMPORARY POLITICS Presenters: Dorbrene O’Marde – Reparations Scholarship: Recognition, Justice, and Development; Ermina Osoba – Gender Relations in Antigua and Barbuda: a Reflective Update; Harland Henry – Mobilizing Small Business Entrepreneurship in Antigua and Barbuda – Chair: Arthur Paris

5:00 – 6:20 p.m. PANEL SIX EXPANDING THE EDUCATIONAL SECTOR Presenters: Juno Samuel – The Making of the University of Antigua and Barbuda; Anthony Joseph – Secondary School Exit Exams in English and Mathematics; Claude Turner – A view of the Antigua and Barbuda Knowledge Economy, 2020 – Chair: Mali Olatunji

6:20 – 7:00 p.m. REFRESHMENT BREAK

7:00 – 8:30 p.m. KEYNOTE READING: Distinguished Author, Jamaica Kincaid – Chair: Hazra Medica


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