Big Ideas

Debate the questions of the day or of the ages with our panels of writers and thinkers, and join intimate salon conversations
Day 1
02 May 2019

An equal place?

A hard-hitting debate on issues of gender, class, ethnicity, sexuality, religion, and human rights.
Andy Johnson
Attillah Springer
Colin Robinson
Sofia Chote

Our music too

We claim calypso and steelpan as T&T’s “national” musical forms, but what about other genres in which we excel? A discussion on the significance of and prospects for genres like...
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Gary Hector
Mark Lyndersay
Nigel Campbell
Ruth Osman
Sharda Patasar

One-on-one with Gary Younge

The British writer and UK Guardian editor-at-large talks to Kevin Adonis Browne about how race continues to shape politics in Britain and the United States. Bookmark
Gary Younge
Kevin Browne
Day 2
03 May 2019

Capitalism and Slavery at 75

Three quarters of a century ago, Eric Williams’s groundbreaking historical and economic study changed the way we understand colonialism, the British Empire, the institution of slavery, and the rationale for...
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Caryl Phillips
Gabrielle Hosein
Heather Cateau
Selwyn R. Cudjoe

Breaking Borders

Writers reflect on a world where political anxieties restrict freedom of movement for all. With Diana Evans, Yuri Herrera, and Nick Makoha; chaired by Jane Bryce. In partnership with the...
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Diana Evans
Jane Bryce
Nick Makoha
Yuri Herrera

The Naipaul inheritance

The new book of essays Seepersad and Sons launches with a debate about the legacies of the Naipaul literary dynasty for contemporary Caribbean writers. Featuring editor Vijay Maharaj, scholar Kenneth...
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Andre Bagoo
Anton Nimblett
Ken Ramchand

Capturing Carnival

A panel discussion on the art and science of Carnival photography, with Maria Nunes (A World of Their Own), Kevin Browne (High Mas), and Christine Norton (Minshall by Norton), chaired...
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Christine Norton
Franka Philip
Kevin Browne
Maria Nunes
Day 3
04 May 2019

One from ten leaves who?

Has the decades-long project of Caribbean regionalism gone stale? A debate on the future of Caribbean unity, featuring June Soomer, secretary-general of the ACS; Adrian Saunders, president of the CCJ;...
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Hon. Mr. Justice Adrian Saunders
Ian Randle
June Soomer
Paula Gopee-Scoon
Schuyler Esprit

Inspired by the Archives

Part two of this groundbreaking series, in which writers of today are commissioned to explore the Caribbean’s literary archives and write new creative works. Featuring Kendel Hippolyte, Celeste Mohammed, and...
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Alexandra Stewart
Celeste Mohammed
Kendel Hippolyte

One-on-one with Anthony Wall

The pioneering UK director talks to Lucy Hannah about the celebrated Arena documentary series and his life in film. In partnership with the British Council Bookmark
Anthony Wall
Lucy Hannah
Day 4
05 May 2019

Heroes and Villains

The authors of new biographical works discuss how and why we should remember those figures from the past who have shaped us, for better and worse. With Selwyn Cudjoe, author...
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Bridget Brereton
Funso Aiyejina
Judy Raymond
Selwyn R. Cudjoe

Granta at 40

Launched in 1979, Granta has become one of the world’s most celebrated literary magazines, and a recognised champion of new authors. As the magazine celebrates its 40th anniversary, online editor...
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Ingrid Persaud
Luke Neima

Why fairy tales still matter

Eminent author and critic Marina Warner gives a thrilling and insightful talk on the origins of the folk stories we call fairy tales, and why they remain vital today. Followed...
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Alexia Arthurs
Andre Bagoo
James Aboud
Marina Warner
Vashti Bowlah

Reading beyond boundaries

Politicians draw borders, and artists transcend them. Writers Barbara Lalla, Shivanee Ramlochan, and Arielle John share newly commissioned pieces reflecting on how their work has been shaped and inspired by...
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Anu Lakhan
Arielle John
Barbara Lalla
Nicholas Laughlin
Shivanee Ramlochan