History

The University of Miami has been at the forefront of Caribbean scholarship since 1993 when Sandra Pouchet Paquet arrived at the University of Miami. With Dr. Paquet at the helm, CLCS wishes to continue the presence of bold and active scholarship begun by the Caribbean Writers’ Summer Institute, which ran at the University of Miami from 1991-1996. Following the establishment of the CWSI, the English Department was invited to join the University of the West Indies Consortium of Caribbean Universities, and has hosted two of the Consortium’s annual conferences on West Indian Literature in 1996 and 2003, in addition to biennial conferences instituted by Caribbean Literary Studies in 1999.The program hosts critical dialogues on fiction, film and other modes of cultural representation. Graduate students, faculty and cultural practitioners from the United States, Caribbean region, Canada, London and Latin America participate in scholarly presentations, film screenings, symposiums and conferences, and art exhibits.

Dr. Sandra Pouchet Paquet (Professor Emerita in English) was the founding faculty member of the CLS program. Dr. Patricia Saunders (Associate Professor of English) is the new Director and is supported by several affiliate faculty members at the University of Miami.  They include: Dr. Timothy P. Watson (Assistant Professor of English), Dr. Lillian Manzor (Associate Professor of Foreign Languages and Literatures), and David Luis-Brown (Associate Professor of English).

Our most recent event was the March 2010 Global Caribbean: Interrogating the Politics of Location in Caribbean Literature and Culture which brought together artists, writers, curators and academics to participate in a three-day dialogue discussing issues surrounding political, social and cultural locations in the Caribbean and its diasporas. This event initiated partnerships between the University of Miami and the PUMA Caribbean Creative Network as well as the Little Haiti Cultural Center. CLCS also recently partnered with Miami’s finest independent bookstore, Books and Books in Coral Gables, to co-host a smaller forum inviting distinguished academic, Ng?g? wa Thiong’o (University of California, Irvine), who read and discussed his latest book, Dreams in a Time of War: A Childhood Memoir(2010).