Around the Corner: Caribbean Globalizations, International Conference

“Caribbean Globalizations: Histories, Cultures and Genres, 1493 to the Present Day,” an international conference hosted by Oriel College-Oxford and the Maison Française d’Oxford will take place on September 27-29, 2010, in Oxford, England. The conference program will include keynote speeches by major writers and academics working on the Caribbean region, art exhibitions, film screenings and musical performances at various venues around Oxford as part of a “Caribbean Week in Oxford.” Co-organizers are Eva Sansavior and Richard Scholar.

Description: This conference will analyze the multiple engagements of various Caribbean countries with the complex and vexed process that is ‘globalization’ since 1493 (when Columbus landed in Guadeloupe). The region has undoubtedly been the source of a number of the literary-critical paradigms by which we understand this process. Examples of these include: ‘Créolité’, ‘creolisation’, ‘la relation’, ‘the Commonwealth’, ‘world literature’, ‘the Black Atlantic’ and ‘littérature-monde’. However, as the recent disturbances in Guadeloupe and Martinique have suggested, Caribbean countries are also actively rethinking their own identity and place in a world where the Western economic model of globalization is more in question than ever. Similarly, in the cultural sphere, the effects of this process on the region have been the subject of a growing and divergent debate.

‘Caribbean globalizations’ seeks to make an intervention in this debate by focusing critical attention on the differing engagements with globalization produced in the Caribbean cultural field. The cultural field has long been a particularly fertile arena for Caribbean globalizations. The diversity that characterizes the cultural and social realities of the region – arguably forged in the context of earlier forms of globalizations – has been an enduring source of inspiration for Caribbean artists, writers, and intellectuals. At the same time, their work has expressed a preoccupation with generating theoretical and aesthetic frameworks – globalization being, perhaps the first among equals – to account for the specificities of their societies as well as the shifting range of ‘relations’ that these societies maintain both within and beyond the ‘Caribbean region’. The conference aims therefore to foster a wide-ranging discussion of the possibilities presented by Caribbean cultural production for reflecting upon and re-imagining the idea of globalization and to explore the multiple engagements with – and representations of – this phenomenon by Caribbean writers, artists, and intellectuals.

For more information, contact Eva Sansavior at  or

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