Women and Development (WAND) Collection

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    Journey in the shaping: Report of the first symposium on women in Caribbean culture - July 24 1981
    (Women and Development Unit (WAND), The University of the West Indies, 1981-07-24) Hope, Margaret
    The first symposium convened to examine the role of Caribbean Women in Culture was held on July 24, 1981, as part of the official programme of Carifesta 81. Over 200 women, most of them born in the Caribbean, some of them residents of the Caribbean either by marriage or "adoption" and some visitors from overseas, most of them either artists or teachers of the arts, gathered at the Hilton Hotel in Barbados along with a few men to participate in a cultural odyssey. It turned out to be a journey into the Caribbean past, the role played by the woman in that past and the artistic manifestations of those roles in Caribbean culture. It was a journey through the looking glass of the present, defining woman's presence in 20th century Caribbean culture and her reality through artistic expression. Finally, it was the preparation for her journey into the future. Dance, drama, story telling, song, testimony, were combined, creating the vehicle for this journey. During the journey, tribute was paid to the 'women of the past and the present; the myths and realities of the Caribbean woman were examined; the reasons for the gaps in women's artistic monologues and/or her silences were tentatively explored. At the end, the women pledged their support to each other, as they struggle separately to express liberating truths.