Barbadian Historian praises local author for showing financial and educational rise of Black Bajans – Sees new trend for history of Middle Class

Very recently at UWI’s Shell Antilles room, there was the long-awaited launch of Alvin Cummins’ “The Royal Palms Are Dying” a coverage of history events in Barbados with new behind the scenes info given as an apocryphal method of explaining their developments.

For instance, in the novel which is published by Caribbean Chapters, there is a shortfall of foreign exchange which is not really due to spending but rather sections of Barbados transferring profits to overseas accounts to push down a new Prime Minister fiscally – while unaware of that development, in order to keep money in the country the same young leader issues an eight per cent surcharge on wages of the Public Sector… Sounds familiar? Yet the new sidelines put an intriguing almost James-Bond like tweak on the reality! Maybe the reasons listed ARE indeed WHY it all went down so?

The book is now available at Pages and Days Bookstores, as well as both branches of the Book Den in Belleville and Worthing, along with UWI’s own bookshop or from Caribbean Chapters.

The emcee for the show was Marcel Murrell (Seen sitting in the corner with the Author above) a former schoolmate from Kolij – aka; Harrison College. Now an accountant, always an avid cricketer, he’s given five years to our former school by being part of its Anniversary activities as well as another half-decade to the place where he works. I give him an equally illustrious background as he did for me at the launch, many thanks! Yours truly was one of the narrators, I chose a passage on Intellectual Property matters from pg’s 102 to 106, it shows why you need to be careful when seeking opinions on works – beware!

Carol Pitt, publisher of Caribbean Chapters, urged the audience to read, she lamented how kids nowadays use PSP‘s, Nintendo‘s or Wii’s to play and shy from “Cops & Robbers” or “Cowboys & Indians” to stretch their imagination and use their personal interaction. She feels if books become more integral in everyone’s lives once more then children can regain their childhood.

Alvin’s schoolchum and former UN rep for Barbados, Besley Maycock offered some comments. Also present was Professor George Lamming (Yet another Combermerian – it was Kolij History Teacher Ralph Jemmott, Marcel and I who were the only exceptions!) who was teacher to both Alvin and self at EBCCI just a few weeks ago.

The real show-stopper was Trevor Marshall, a noted historian who’s made a series of calls to Barbados, he sees the need for a BARBADIAN biography to be composed on Rachel Pringle, the Madam/Hotelier of Bridgetown and Marshall also thinks Bajans need to be creating books and films on or about Rihanna (Dude, en’t that a bit early?)… But his real contribution is seeing the development of Barbadian Literature apart from Professor Lamming –

Lorraine Abed and Tony Thompson were also present to lend their talents and assistance to the evening’s celebration of the re-emergence of local Literature. “The Wind Also Listens,” the prequel to “…Royal Palms…” (This is not to be confused with the Jamaican TV soap-opera) is due out in September after Alvin confers with Professor Lamming on some minor fine-tuning details.

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