A leading academic is emphasizing what he sees as the need to introduce the calypso in the country’s schools.
That position was articulated on behalf of Dr Francis Severin, the head of the UWI Open Campus, Dominica, at the Dominica Calypso “Kaiso” Hall of Fame Induction at the Fort Young Hotel on Thursday night.
In that address read by a co-worker, Dr Severin observed that “Calypsoes have always brought to the fore the burning issues of the land, so I wish to condemn those who seem to be dismayed and distraught by the political calypso”.
“Instead of condemning calypsoes, we must give serious thought to introducing the calypso on the curriculum at the primary and secondary school levels,” he advised.
The UWI official says he is sympathetic to private citizens whose personal lives are explored “with too much intrusion” in local calypsoes.
However he does not extend that same kind of comfort to the politician.
“I cannot lend comfort to politicians, whom for many calypsoes, are the contemporary successors of the slave/master oppressors,” Dr Severin penned, arguing that those holding political office should expect to become objects of picong and satire.
His advise to the politicians “let us therefore mature as a people because our hypocrisy is becoming a little annoying, to say the least”.
The UWI Open Campus head here has also reiterated an earlier appeal he made for financial, social and political support for the country’s playwrights, poets, scriptwriters, spoken word artists, storytellers, calypsonians, writers and authors “as they narrate or tell our stories, as they interpret, and as they argue or reason to achieve our own understanding”.
Along the lines of understanding and putting in perspective developments in the country, another key individual has been advocating deeper analysis of Dominican matters.
Former Chief Cultural Officer Alwyn Bully says he is concerned that in this “internet age”, issues are usually given fast food treatment.
Bully says he misses “indepth, constructive criticism” and is calling for “well thought-out proper analysis”.