Sunday, 23 September 2012

LiTTscapes can help people rediscover T&T says Minister

LiTTscapes can help people rediscover T&T says Minister
Dr Bhoe Tewarie reviews LiTTscapes – Landscapes of Fiction from Trinidad and Tobago by Kris Rampersad
This book derives out of the literature of Trinidad and Tobago and the inspiration that our land, our people, our culture and our heritage have provided to our writers.  What has inspired them and what has given context to the work of writers of Trinidad and Tobago have in turn inspired this book which is a valuable addition to our literature and meaningful guide to our literature and our literary landscape.  This is a book worth reading.  It is a book worth having.
This book can be a stimulus to readers and reading, an encouragement to literacy and literacy development, to empowerment of our people and our culture and can facilitate business and employment.
It also demonstrates how one publication can make a big difference to the publishing industry and be a bridge to other sectors of the creative economy and the wider economy as well.  One book such as this one can involve 100 people in various activities – printing, research, writing, photography, design, marketing, administration, quality control, copy editing, proof reading, IT services, legal/copyright, advisory services. It involves various aspects of the creative sectors of art, craft,  drama, staging, and music, and has potential for linkages with industries as music, film, animation, design, tourism, education, community development, product development related to tourism, tours, knowledge services.
The people of this country have not yet begun to appreciate the extent to which our culture, our heritage and our creative products are linked to the creation of a knowledge economy to the expansion of dimensions of the services sector, to economic diversification and to mind intensive and labour intensive industries that are homegrown and have international appeal and global interest.
The Government of Trinidad and Tobago is pleased to be associated with the publication of LiTTscapes which is a totally local effort from start to finish and which is focused on landscapes of fiction in Trinidad and Tobago as a book worthy of publication at time of celebration of our 50th Anniversary of Independence.
LiTTscapes is a wonderful book to introduce young people to literature and to help them to discover their country.  It is also a great introduction of Trinidad and Tobago and our literary output and cultural heritage to the rest of the world.  There is a lot of potential in this little book.
Given the nature of this book literary tours are a natural and I am sure that several tours will be crafted with positive impact.
The celebration of fifty years of Independence has been a good opportunity for reflection and celebration of ourselves and a good opportunity too to think about our future and prospects for that future.
We have created so much in this country.  Not just calypso and chutney and soca; not just steelpan and steel orchestras and great athletes, all of which we continue to share with the world; but we have also given the world great writers, thinkers, intellectuals and creative artists.
It is wonderful to be launching a book which is derived from what so many have created and which is likely to be stimulus to other imaginative possibilities.
We must begin to truly cherish who we are and what we have been able to create.  We must begin to believe more deeply in our people and to have stronger faith in what we can do in the future.  We must learn to respect ourselves and each other in a way that strengthens our dignity as a people and we must develop the bigheartedness to celebrate the achievements and victories of others and cultivate the humility to share our own achievements and triumphs.
Let us together celebrate this effort of Dr. Kris Rampersad and the publication of LiTTscapes.  It celebrates our literary genius and our great country, which in spite of our perpetual complaints, is a source of inspiration to all of us.
LiTTscapes is available at Metropolitan and the bookstores.
Dr Bhoendradatt Tewarie is Minister of Planning and Sustainable Development and a former campus principal and lecturer of the University of the West Indies who holds a PhD in West Indian Literature
Photo Caption 1: Minister of Planning and Sustainable Development, Dr Bhoe Tewarie (from right) with authors, Dr Kris Rampersad and Michael Anthony at the launch of LiTTscapes – Landscapes of Fiction from Trinidad and Tobago by Dr Kris Rampersad. Photo by Kenrick Ramjit
Photo Caption 2. LiTTscapes - Landscapes of Fiction from Trinidad and Tobago, available at Metropolitan Book Suppliers and other bookshops. See

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