Aimé Césaire International Colloquium

Contact details The University of the West Indies Faculty of Humanities and Education Department of Language, Linguistics and Literature Cave Hill Campus; Barbados, WI Fax : (1246) 424-0634
Principal country concerned : Column : History/society
Release/publication date : May 2008
Published on : 20/05/2008
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UWI Cave Hill, Barbados, October 15-17, 2008

To pay tribute to the internationally acclaimed writer and
politician Martinican Aimé Césaire who died in April 2008 in
his ninety fifth year, the Department of Language
Linguistics and Literature will hold a Special "Aimé Césaire
Colloquium", from October 15 - 17, 2008 at Cave Hill Campus,
The University of the West Indies, Barbados.

Aimé Césaire (1913-2008) is the creator of the concept of
Negritude. His Cahier d'un retour au pays natal (Notebook of
a Return to Native Land) published in 1939 was received as a
masterwork of the Negritude movement. He wrote many poetry
collections, plays and essays all centered on the identity
of Blacks. Identifying himself with all Blacks and
recognizing his African descent, he deeply experienced the
tragedy of his self as a colonized Caribbean man; he could
embrace in the same heroic movement the destinies of
Toussaint Louverture, King Christophe and Patrice Lumumba.
On the other hand he has marked the political and cultural
history of Martinique of the six last decades and has been
criticized by some of his fellow citizens for his political

The impact of Aimé Césaire on the Black Consciousness is
worldwide far beyond the little island of Martinique. From
his commitment in the Negritude movement to the end of his
last term as Mayor of Fort-de-France, Césaire has remained
trustful to his original thought. His fight against
colonialism and his trust in the destiny of Black people
have never changed his Identity: "Nègre je suis, Nègre je
resterai" (I am Negro, I will remain a Negro). Césaire is
also the subject of a controversy in his homeland and the
Caribbean. The younger generation of the Creolity movement
criticizes him openly. It is a process of killing the
patriarch in order to regenerate new trends in the Caribbean
intellectual and political universe.

While revisiting history and writings from the Negritude,
this colloquium will also explore new directions in African
and Caribbean literatures.


- Negritude movement
- Colonialism
- Antillanité and Créolité
- Aimé Césaire : work, legacy, tributes and controversies
- Aimé Césaire: poetics and literary criticism
- Aimé Césaire, France and departmentalization
- African and Caribbean Literature
- African and Caribbean Philosophy
- Surrealism movement and Negritude
- Afro-Caribbean Mythology
- African Survivals in the Caribbean
- Black Religious movements
- Black Identity

The conference will be held in French and English.

Registration fee: 50 US$

Please e-mail a 250 word abstract of your paper with CV
before July 1, 2008 either to Isabelle Constant: or Kahiudi Mabana:


  • Arterial network
  • Media, Sports and Entertainment Group (MSE)
  • Gens de la Caraïbe
  • Groupe 30 Afrique
  • Alliance Française VANUATU
  • Zimbabwe : Culture Fund Of Zimbabwe Trust
  • RDC : Groupe TACCEMS
  • Rwanda : Positive Production
  • Togo : Kadam Kadam
  • Niger : ONG Culture Art Humanité
  • Collectif 2004 Images
  • Africultures Burkina-Faso
  • Bénincultures / Editions Plurielles
  • Africiné
  • Afrilivres

With the support of