Jamaica News: The Mona campus of the University of the West Indies (UWI) is hosting several activities over the next few months to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the birthday of late cultural icon, Dr. the Hon. Louise Bennett Coverley, popularly known as “Miss Lou”.
The activities, under the theme ‘Miss Lou 100’, include a debate titled, “Louise Bennett for National Icon”; a poetry clash; an exhibition celebrating Miss Lou’s centennial; public consultations on the issue of language rights in Jamaica; and a Walter Rodney lecture dedicated to Miss Lou.
Director of the UWI’s Institute for Gender and Development Studies, Professor Opal Palmer Adisa, who is spearheading the activities, told JIS News that several departments were brought together to organise the tribute to the cultural icon.
These include the Department of Literatures in English; Jamaican Language Unit; the Institute for Gender and Development Studies (IGDS), Regional Coordinating Office; the Main Library; Institute for Caribbean Studies; the Faculties of Humanities and Education; and other stakeholders.
‘I brought the various departments together because I wanted it to be a university- wide function,” she said.
Professor Adisa said that a ‘Regional Day’ will be held on October 7 at the Regional Headquarters while a Miss Lou symposium focused on gender-based violence will take place on November 25.
She told JIS News that the symposium, which will be held on International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (IDEVAW), will explore Miss Lou’s work and its relevance in addressing gender-based violence in Jamaica.
Professor Adisa noted that although Miss Lou was a folklorist and comedienne she was also “a serious commentator, who wrote about domestic violence”.
“Data is suggesting that there is a lot of violence happening in the schools. We want to ensure that our young people understand that this kind of behaviour is unacceptable and to provide them with alternative ways to co-exist,” she noted.
She told JIS News that representatives of non-governmental organisations, women’s groups, educators, teachers and students from selected public schools will be invited to attend.
Source: JIS News