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Charlotte Amalie
Saturday, July 20, 2024


April 3, 2002 – All week the University of the Virgin Islands campuses have been hosting "The Humanities," in all its varied expressions. Daytime and nighttime events have taken place across the St. Thomas campus from the cafeteria to the clubhouse, and in classrooms and conference rooms, and on the St. Croix campus as well on Wednesday and Thursday.
The events so far have been a mix of experts from home and afar; of academic and community creators; of speakers, debaters, and listeners; of writers and readers; of professors and students and non-students.
Friday is the students' day to shine: a daylong conference at the UVI St. Thomas campus Sports and Fitness Center, West Mezzanine: It's the students' show from start to finish, and from behind the scenes and up front.
Organized and managed by students, "Literature and Life: Weaving the Threads of the New Millennium with Tradition and Vision" takes place from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Like the entire Humanities Festival, the program is tightly packed.
Friday morning starts off with opening of the plenary session by mistress of ceremonies (and UVI senior) Kimberly Lloyd, a welcome from Festival organizer and UVI Humanities Division chairwoman Lorna C. Young-Wright, and remarks by St. Croix Humanities Division chairwoman Valerie Combie. After a "cultural presentation" by Rumin Rougier comes the keynote address.
The keynote speaker is Prof. Geoffrey Philp of Miami-Dad College. Philp is known to readers of UVI's publication "The Caribbean Writer" as winner of the Canute Brodhurst award. A native of Jamaica who grew up in Kingston, he has published three poetry collections and a book of short fiction. His story, "My Brother's Keeper," is among writings of outstanding Caribbean writers in "The Oxford Book of Caribbean Short Stories," published in 1999.
Philp, said UVI professor Gene Emanuel, "is a fresh voice coming to the marketplace." Philp is expected read in the St. Croix poetry event on Thursday.
The luncheon session will feature an address by retiring UVI president Orville Kean; awards for the Black History Month essay contest and the Presidential Award; and a cultural presentation by Tiffany Matthew. Essay contest winners, both university and high school students from both islands, will attend.
Panel sessions
Panels, including presentation of student papers, will take place throughout the day.
"The Kumbla and Beyond: Visions of Being …" at 10:45 a.m. is chaired by Dalton Carty. Panelists are Florence Marsh and Sarita Malcolm, from UVI St. Croix, and Martha Joseph and Mercedes Rodriquez, from UVI St. Thomas.
"Reality and Vision: Beyond Ordinary Experience" at 1:25 p.m. is chaired by Jamila Woods. Panelists are Alicia Gayadeen from UVI St. Croix and Kimberly Lloyd and Shamila Banwaree of UVI St. Thomas.
"Language and Life: Creole in Context" at 3:30 p.m. is chaired by Agnes Nicolas and includes panelists Derian Carty and Dalton Carty, both of UVI St. Thomas.
Special readings by Matthews and by "Ms. L. Smith" of UVI St. Thomas will occur at 2:30 p.m. The third panel will be followed by a 4 p.m. cultural presentation by Nyasha Mutundu, a UVI junior reigning as Miss UVI; remarks by Student Government Association president Martha Joseph; and closing remarks by Emanuel. It ends just in time for participants and audience to get to the 5 p.m. journalism forum.
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