Caribbean Reasonings: Freedom, Power and Sovereignty
The Thought of Gordon K. Lewis
For seven consecutive years, the Centre for Caribbean Thought at the University of the West Indies, Mona hosted a series of ‘Caribbean Reasonings’ – conferences honouring outstanding Caribbean intellectuals.
By: Brian Meeks and Jermaine McCalpin
For seven consecutive years, the Centre for Caribbean Thought at the University of the West Indies, Mona hosted a series of ‘Caribbean Reasonings’ – conferences honouring outstanding Caribbean intellectuals. The G.K. Lewis conference was the final in the series; and though Lewis was neither a Caribbean man by birth nor heritage, he was so by choice and was without a doubt, a leading voice in Caribbean political science.
From his arrival in Puerto Rico in the 1950s, until his death in the early 1990s, Lewis, through his numerous publications, established himself as a Caribbean thinker. In this volume, the contributors pay homage to Lewis’s remarkable work embodied in his four most influential publications on the Caribbean – Puerto Rico: Freedom and Power in the Caribbean, The Growth of the Modern West Indies, Main Currents in Caribbean Thought and Grenada: The Jewel Despoiled.
The breadth of Lewis’s scholarship is revealed in the ten chapters covering his work on the Caribbean. From concepts of sovereignty and regional integration, to the nature of democracy in the contemporary Caribbean, the influence of African thought and the African Diaspora on the development of a Caribbean intellectual tradition, the influence of theology and the pursuit of a democratic socialism for the Caribbean, G.K. Lewis’s work is analysed, admired and critiqued by the contributors.
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About the Editors:
Brian Meeks was Professor of Social and Political Change at the University of the West Indies, Mona and Director of the Sir Arthur Lewis Institute for Social and Economic Studies. He is currently
Jermaine McCalpin is a Lecturer in Transitional Justice in the Department of Government, University of the West Indies, Mona. He specializes in Africana political philosophy, Caribbean political thought, and transitional justice.
Introduction – The Scholar as Optimist – Brian Meeks
IN THE VANGUARD OF CARIBBEAN THOUGHT
1. Deciphering the Marx-Burke Counterpoint in Gordon K. Lewis’s Work – Anthony P. Maingot
2. Gordon Lewis and the Writing of Afro-Caribbean Political Thought – Paget Henry
3. ‘An Extended Debate with Europe?’: G.K. Lewis, Denis Benn, Paget Henry, and the Epistemological Challenge in the Writing of Caribbean Political Thought – Tennyson S.D. Joseph
4. A Lens of a Different Colour: Gordon K. Lewis, Postmodernity and Cuban Antislavery Narratives – Claudette M. Williams
5. Opening the Canon: The Place of Theology in Caribbean Intellectual Thought – Delroy A. Reid-Salmon
6. Toward Reconstituting Caribbean Identity Discourse from within the Dutch Caribbean Island of Curaçao – Rose Mary Allen
RETHINKING CARIBBEAN POLITICS
7. The ‘Slums of Empire’ and Gordon K. Lewis: Reflections on Decolonization and Sovereignty in the Caribbean – Jessica Byron
8. Some Perspectives on Gordon Lewis’s Legacy in the Understanding of Regionalism – Edward Greene
9. The Reshaping of Freedom and Power in Puerto Rico: Community-based Social Change in the Era of Neoliberal Reforms – Rafael A. Boglio Martínez
10. Gordon Lewis and the Mass Suicide in Jonestown, Guyana 1978 – Ralph Premdas