Category Archives: Race and Identity

An incomplete revolution

By Raffique Shah
March 02, 2020

Raffique ShahFifty years after the Black Power Revolution shook Trinidad and Tobago’s foundation, many people, mostly older folks, are trying to quantify what benefits, if any, were derived from those tumultuous events. In contrast, younger people have no idea that anything significant happened in 1970, nor are they interested in our history. Hell, they have little or no interest in history as a subject, far less in local history.
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Question of race and ethnicity in T&T

By Dr Kwame Nantambu
December 16, 2019

Dr. Kwame NantambuOne of the most perplexing and intractable issues/problems in T&T is the utter, total misuse albeit mis-categorization of the term “racist” to describe interaction between citizens. And this overt faux pas reared its ugly head during the recent local government elections and the puerile parliamentary squabble between a PNM government minister and a UNC opposition senator— two putatively educated grown men.
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Sat Maharaj and Martin Luther King

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
November 26, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeOne radio host called my comparison of Sat Maharaj with Martin Luther King “sacrilegious” while a caller to another radio station wondered what had happened to Professor Cudjoe since 2011. “I had admired Professor Cudjoe but now I don’t know what has gone wrong with him. Imagine his comparing Sat to Martin Luther King.” These were some of the condemnations that arose from my remarks about Satnarayan Maharaj.
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One step away from Hell

By Raffique Shah
August 09, 2019

Raffique ShahStirring racial tensions during the run-up to major elections in Trinidad and Tobago is an appeal to primal ethnic instincts as old as when adult franchise was first granted to what was then a British crown colony back in 1946 when I was born. And I dare say it’s as ancient and decrepit as I am today, so much so that it should have long been buried or consigned to the dustbin of history.
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The Road Make to Walk…

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
August 06, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeLast Sunday, four of the five Sunday columnists of this newspaper wrote about the crime problem that confronts the nation. The Sunday Guardian also published a long investigative piece on the subject. On Monday, Archbishop Charles Jason Gordon talked about the pervasiveness of crime and concluded that ours is “a culture of disrespect.” At a fundamental level, it is more an economic-philosophical than a moral question. Left unattended and incorrectly analyzed, it will lead to greater degeneracy.
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Abolition of Slavery — Economic/Political Aspects

By Dr Kwame Nantambu
Published: August 06, 2019

Dr. Kwame NantambuThis article was written before August 01, 2019

As Emancipation Day approaches, it is indeed apropos to delineate the economic and political aspects of the abolition of slavery, albeit the European enslavement of African people or MAAFA— the “great disaster.”
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CLR James: man without honour in his own country

By Raffique Shah
August 02, 2019

Raffique ShahA tragedy of our times is the absolute ignorance of the vast majority of our population of the nation’s history. And for once I cannot blame this void on information technology, on the electronic devices that most young people and many mature ones are glued to, in most instances day and night.
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Our Living Past

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
March 28, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeTony Barber, Oxford scholar and European editor of the Financial Times, recalls an interesting occurrence when the European Union sought to write a European history book. “One historian from each EU member state was commissioned to write a chapter. The project was abandoned after the British complained that a Spanish historian had dismissed Sir Francis Drake, the Elizabethan maritime hero and victor over the Spanish Armada in 1588, as a mere ‘pirate'” (Financial Times, March 16).
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Thinking Dialectically About Slavery

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
January 30, 2019

“It is impossible completely to understand Marx’s Capital…without having thoroughly studied and understood the whole of Hegel’s Logic.”

—V. I. Lenin quoted in C. L. R. James, Notes on Dialectics

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeOn Monday the Sugar and Slavery Gallery of London Museum Docklands invited me to be a panelist in a seminar, “London’s Debt to and Involvement with Slavery.” The other panelist, Dr. Kate Donington, Co-Curator of the Slavery, Culture and Collecting display at the Museum, spoke about George Hibbert, a slave owner in Jamaica and a hugely influential presence in eighteenth-century Jamaica and London.
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The Museum of African American History

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
January 08, 2019

“The past is all that makes the present coherent.”

— James Baldwin, Notes of a Native Son

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeIt was a rainy afternoon in Washington D.C., the Friday after Christmas, when I paid a chance visit to the National Museum of African American History & Culture. I had heard so much about this fantastic museum and the attention it has drawn throughout the U.S. (United States) that I did not expect to get a ticket to explore its wonders. I took my chances and was lucky to enter its gates. I didn’t regret it. It was one of the most impressive museums I have ever seen.
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