A black, female writer’s story: Lisa Allen-Agostini

Repeating Islands

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An essay by Lisa Allen-Agostini for Trinidad’s Newsday.

LAST Sunday a new Caribbean writing journal, Pree, debuted online. Its crown jewel was an essay by Jamaican poet Kei Miller, The White Women and the Language of Bees. In it he recounted conversations between him and various white Caribbean women about their right to be called Caribbean writers. It reprised a vicious war of words in print and online in 2014 between Trinidadian-UK author Monique Roffey and St Lucian poet Vladimir Lucien.

Miller has since withdrawn the essay from Pree. He posted to Facebook on May 29 that he stood by the essay and had withdrawn it out of respect for the Bocas Lit Fest, which was being disrupted by the polarised arguments over the essay. Roffey’s Facebook profile is no longer visible.

I cried with one of the women alluded to in the piece when I saw her at…

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