Book Launch and Panel: Democratic Advance and Conflict Resolution in Post-Colonial Guyana


The Caribbean Seminar Series of the Institute for the Study of the Americas and the Institute of Commonwealth Studies will host a panel and book launch. The late Judaman Seecoomar’s Democratic Advance and Conflict Resolution in Post-Colonial Guyana (published posthumously by Peepal Tree Press, 2009) will be presented on October 14, 2009. The speakers for the panel discussion will be Clem Seecharan and Peter Fraser, from London Metropolitan University, and editor/publisher Jeremy Poynting, representing Peepal Tree Press. Sponsored by the Seecoomar Trust, the launch and panel will take place from 4:00-7:00pm at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (Rooms L103 and L102), located at Charles Clore House, 17 Russell Square in London (on the corner of Russell Square and Bedford Way).

foto.SeecoomarJudaman Seecoomar’s Democratic Advance and Conflict Resolution in Post-Colonial Guyana examines how the conflicts between Guyanese peoples of African and Indian heritage have undermined social and economic development in Guyana for more than four decades. This book presents a sequel to Contributions towards the Resolution of Conflict in Guyana, moving beyond historical and theoretical analysis of the ethnic conflict and the principles on which resolution might be based and proposing practical steps toward finding a way out of a political impasse.

In his review, Frank Birbalsingh (Professor Emeritus, York University) writes:

His combination of Guyanese details in Democratic Advance, earnest probing of current theoretical sources, and his relentless effort to find solutions to Guyana’s political problems also suggests fierce patriotism. For if we consider Seecoomar’s long years of academic preparation despite ill health, his high-minded abstention from promoting partisan interests of his own (Indian) ethnic group, the mature, considered clarity of his writing, and his claim that “study of Guyana is a metaphor for other multi-ethnic post-colonial states,” we cannot miss a deeply ingrained love of country that nourishes his aim to satisfy all Guyanese. Whether or not this aim is achieved, and whether or not the rigorously argued power sharing proposals in Democratic Advance can succeed in extricating Guyana from its sinking political quagmire, they surely cannot be ignored. As Seecoomar writes, his proposals “are not meant to be a blueprint. There is no blueprint. Rather they are a contribution to…serious debate.”

For further queries, contact the seminar convenors at or

For full book review by Frank Birbalsingh, see

For book purchasing information, see

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