Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Douard Glissant

Douard Glissant

douard Glissant is a French writer, poet and literary critic. He is widely recognised as being one of the most influential figures in Caribbean thought and cultural commentary. He studied at the Lyce Schoelcher, named after the abolitionist Victor Schoelcher, where the poet Aim Csaire had studied and to which he returned as a teacher. Csaire had met Lon Damas there; later in Paris they would join with Lopold Senghor, a poet and the future first president of Senegal, to formulate and promote the concept of ngritude. Csaire did not teach Glissant, but did serve as an inspiration to him; another student at the school at that time was Frantz Fanon. Glissant left Martinique in 1946 for Paris, where he received his PhD, having studied ethnography at the Muse de l'Homme and History and philosophy at the Sorbonne. He established, with Paul Niger, the separatist Front Antillo-Guyanais pour l'Autonomie party in 1959, as a result of which Charles de Gaulle barred him from leaving France between 1961 and 1965. He returned to Martinique in 1965 and founded the Institut martiniquais d'tudes, as well as Acoma, a social sciences publication. He now divides his time between Martinique, Paris and New York, where he has been visiting professor of French Literature at CUNY since 1995. In January 2006, douard Glissant was asked by Jacques Chirac to take on the presidency of a new cultural centre devoted to the history of slave trade. An English translation of Chirac's speech can be found here

[A New Philosophy Henri Bergson]

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