The Caribbean Literary Studies Program was formed in 1999 with the goal of creating imaginative and productive spaces to hold discussions about Caribbean literature, culture and the arts.

The program is made up of graduate students (M.F.A., M.A., and Ph.D.), alumni, faculty and other interested parties from the University of Miami community and the Greater Miami area who have  critical and creative interests Caribbean cultural production.

We work collaboratively to produce an array of academic and community forums: our peer-reviewed electronic journal, Anthurium, bi-annual conferences partnering with local cultural institutions, and events that introduce new and emerging writers, scholars and visual artists to the Greater Miami community throughout the year.


Past Events

The 31st Annual Meeting of the West Indian Literature Conference

Imagined Nations, 50 Years Later: 
Reflections on Independence and Federation in the Caribbean

Hosted by:
Caribbean Literary and Cultural Studies at the University of Miami
October 11-13th, 2012
University of Miami • Coral Gables, Miami, FL

View the Conference Website

Global Caribbean(s): 
Interrogating the Politics of Location in Caribbean Literature and Culture
The University of Miami, Coral Gables - March 2010

Caribbean Literary and Cultural Studies and the Otto Richter Library Digital Media Initiative:
Celebrating Five Years of Electronic Scholarship
Monday, October 13, 2008, 3:30pm College of Arts and Sciences Gallery

In honor of the ongoing successful partnership between the University of Miami’s Caribbean Literary and Cultural Studies (CLCS) and Otto Richter Library’s Digital Media Services (DMS), CLCS and DMS hosted an event to celebrate two collaborative initiatives—the 5th Anniversary Issue of the electronic journal Anthurium and the launch of a Caribbean visual arts website: As Far as the Eye/I Can See: Caribbean Art and Visual Culture. The event featured a lecture by cultural critic Annie Paul (University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica) and remarks by Sandra Pouchet Paquet, Professor Emeritus in English, Patricia Saunders, Associate Professor of English, Anthony Smith, former Director of Digital Initiatives, Resources and Services, and Renee Mussai, Project Manager for Autograph ABP.

The Asian Experience in the Caribbean and the Guyanas
November 1-3, 2007

In September, 2000, CLCS hosted an academic conference with the cooperation and support of several University Departments and Programs: Contextualizing the Caribbean: Redefining Approaches in an Era of Globalization. Over 120 scholars attended the three-day congress, which included keynote lectures by Peter Hulme and Carole Boyce Davies and readings by writers Zee Edgell and Elizabeth Nunez. In March 2003, CLCS co-hosted the 22nd Annual Conference on West Indian Literature, Caribbean Currents: Navigating the Web and the Word. This conference featured over 25 panels with a little over 100 scholarly presentations and included a keynote address by Kamau Brathwaite and readings by Margaret Cesaire-Thompson and Olive Senior. Our next major conference, Calypso and the Caribbean Literary Imagination co-sponsored with the Historical Museum of South Florida, took place in March 2005. The three day conference featured panel and film presentations, and keynote addresses by M. NourbeSe Philip, Gordon Rohlehr and Earl Lovelace.

In June 2007, CLCS collaborated with Caribbean Scholarly Journal, Small Axe,for the week-long symposium and seminar entitled, Archaeologies of Black Memory. This scholarly event brought academic and cultural activists together to discuss the relationships between archive, collective memory and public criticism in African Diaspora Studies. Among the presenters were, Brent Edwards (English, Rutgers University), Saidiya Hartman (English and Comparative Literature, Columbia University), Krista Thompson (African Diaspora Art, Northwestern University), and Michael Hanchard (Political Science, Director of Institute on Diaspora Studies, Northwestern University). The seminar and symposium was held at the University of Miami June 21 - 29 and was funded by the Ford Foundation Grant project.

In November 2007 CLCS hosted The Asian Experience in the Caribbean and the Guyanas: Labor, Migration, Literature, and Culture. This three-day event was a multi-disciplinary conference spanning literary, cultural, and visual studies that sought to reconfigure a Trans-Atlantic geographic and historic paradigm of slavery and colonization to include the coerced migration of South Asians and East Asians to the Americas. This conference included 41 scholarly presentations making up eleven distinct panels, Cheuk C. Kwan’s film Chinese Restaurants on the Islands, and Willi Chen’s artwork. Key note lecturers and guests included: Cyril Dabydeen, Dr. Walton Look Lai, Jan Lowe Shinebourne, Lelawattee Manoo-Rahming, Brinda J. Mehta, and Dr. Rajandaye Ramkissoon-Chen.

Our most recent three-day symposium was the March 2010 Global Caribbean: Interrogating the Politics of Location in Literature and Culture which encouraged a critical dialogue about the politics of location in the Caribbean region, with several panels on the recent natural disaster in Haiti and the long term impact on cultural and educational institutions. The Office of the President and the Office of the Dean in the College of Arts and Sciences provided tremendous support for this project and made it possible for us to reach out into the greater Miami community to partner with other organizations. The symposium was co-hosted by the Little Haiti Cultural Center (City of Miami), the Haitian Cultural Arts Alliance.

Keynote speakers included Mimi Sheller (Drexel University), novelist, Patricia Powell (Mills College) and Bahamain poet, Marion Bethel who gave public readings and signed copies of their books for the audience members from the greater Miami community. The conference included, a gallery tour of the little Haiti cultural center, and a film screening of Poto Mitan: Haitian Women, Pillars of the Global Economy.

Distinguished Professor Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o (University of California, Irvine) recounts memories from his childhood in Kenya. Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o reads from Dreams in a Time of War: A Childhood Memoir at Books and Books in Coral Gables (co-sponsored by the University of Miami. Address: 265 Aragon Avenue, Coral Gables, FL 33134).
Five University of Miami English graduate students (Christine Morando, Briana Casali, Sydney Owens, Stephanie Selvick, and Marta Fernandez) look on as  Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o signs a copy of his new book Dreams in a Time of War: A Childhood Memoir. Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o along with longtime friend Chenjerai Hove (current Miami City of Refuge Writer-in-Residence at the Florida Center for the Literary Arts at Miami Dade College) field questions from the audience.
University of Miami English graduate student gladly receives a signed copy of Dreams in a Time of War: A Childhood Memoir as three other students look on.