Caribbean Women Writers and Scholars, Suriname Conference


THE CARIBBEAN, THE LAND, AND THE PEOPLE:  Women’s Efforts, Women’s Lives

May 8-12, 2012

Paramaribo, Suriname


Many intellectuals feel that life in the Caribbean holds restrictions for
the development of their work. They complain about the narrow scope and
meager publishing opportunities. Art workers in the Caribbean region also
often feel neglected and treated as inferior by the established literature
and intellectual circles in countries of Diaspora.

With the title “THE CARIBBEAN, THE LAND AND THE PEOPLE,” the local
committee in Suriname wants to focus on the Caribbean as a geographic
region and the people that populate this region. In this conference we
want to outline the possibilities and the restrictions of life on a
Caribbean island or in the Caribbean region. What does it mean to be a
local Caribbean and what is (was/will be) happening with the people in
this part of the world? Which chances and opportunities do writers have?
Which literary art products does this region have and do these products
deserve international attention? What are the possibilities for the
Caribbean to highlight their cultural and intellectual works to a global
level? What are types of problems must be overcome?

The subtitle, “WOMEN’S EFFORTS, WOMEN’S LIVES,” links the conference thems
and organizing questions to issues of gender, an utmost concern of the
ACWWS. It also identifies the role of women as generative in the formation
of Caribbean communities. We can even take the theme literally as we think
of the many women who made (and still make) their livings out of the
Caribbean’s soil, growing food and cultivating agricultural products.

Because of the large number of Surinamese literary and cultural producers,
this conference aims to look at the new challenges in the writing and
studying of Caribbean creative writing in a kaleidoscopic way.

The conference’s theme is intentionally broad to allow participants myriad
ways to elaborate on it. We suggest the following subtopics:

•    Caribbean Women: Recognition and Tribute
•    Literature and Politics: Women’s Voices
•    Women’s Activism: Working Against Silence and Oppression
•    Caribbean Women in/and History: Indigenous Women in Colonial
Times, Indentured Labor, Slavery
•    Caribbean Futures: Visionary Women
•    Caribbean Ethnicities: “Problems,” “Opportunities,” Realities
•    Cross-cultural Fertilization
•    Female Sexualities
•    Caribbean Women, Mothering Sons
•    Caribbean Daughters and Fathers
•    Caribbean Literature’s Mythic Women
•    Economics and Caribbean Women: Survival/Surviving, Building Careers
•    Publishing Strategies in the Caribbean
•    Critics on Caribbean Women’s Literature
•    Modern Oral Traditions: Techniques, Genres, Contents
•    Geography as Literary Space
•    Caribbean Writers in Education
•    “Mother Tongues” Against the Languages of Empire

All proposals must be received by: November 31, 2011. You must be a
dues-paying member of ACWWS to present at the conference. Membership is
open to writers and scholars with research, teaching, writing, and study
interests in the work of Caribbean women writers, or in Caribbean
literature generally.  (For information on ACWWS MEMBERSHIP and DUES,
please select the “Brochure Download” link at

All papers must represent new, previously unpublished work. We strongly
encourage panel proposals, and encourage performance artists to submit
proposals for music, film and/or theatre presentations.
PANEL PROPOSALS must include (in addition to the requirements for
INDIVIDUAL PAPER PROPOSALS): a detailed abstract for each paper, a
designated chair, and a short statement as to why the submissions should
be considered as a panel.  INDIVIDUAL PAPER PROPOSALS must include: title,
200-word abstract, and a short bio.

Please include your full name, institutional affiliation, paper/panel
title, phone number, and preferred email address with your proposal.
Submissions should be emailed to:

Dr. Ismene Krishnadath, Writer, and Teacher of Pedagogy, Teachers Training

Dr. Hilde Neus, Head of Dutch Department, Teachers Training Institute.

For further inquiries, please navigate to:

ACWWS website:
for information on the Association of Caribbean Women Writers and
Scholars, and for 2012 conference updates