Derek Walcott--Biographical Sketch. 1930 1/23born in St. Lucia Photo Credit: Nancy Crampton 1950 founded the St. Lucia Arts Guild 1953 BA from UWI--Mona 1959-71 founded the Little Carib Theatre 1992 Nobel Laureate. UWI, Mona Campus--Mural.
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Derek Walcott--Biographical Sketch • 1930 1/23born in St. Lucia Photo Credit: Nancy Crampton • 1950 founded the St. Lucia Arts Guild • 1953 BA from UWI--Mona • 1959-71 founded the Little Carib Theatre • 1992 Nobel Laureate
UWI, Mona Campus--Mural • Photo credit: Pin-chia Feng
Derek Walcott’s Major Works • Poetry (17 collected works since 1948): • The Castaway and Other Poems, 1965 • The Gulf and Other Poems, 1969 • Another Life, 1973 • Sea Grapes, 1976 • Selected Verse, 1976 • The Star-Apple Kingdom, 1979 • The Fortunate Traveler, 1981 • Collected Poems, 1948-1984
Derek Walcott--Major Works 2 • The Arkansas Testament, 1987 • Omeros, 1989 • The Bounty, 1997 • Plays (23 plays since 1950) • Dream on Monkey Mountain, 1967 • Odyssey: A Stage Version, 1993 • The Capeman: A Musical, 1998 (with Paul Simon)
Derek Walcott--Major Works 3 • Other works: • Franklin • A Tale of the Islands • Jourmand • To Die for Grenada • The Poet in the Theatre, 1990 • Antilles: Fragments of Epic Memory, 1993 • What the Twilight Says: Essays, 1998
Island Light: Recent Watercolors by Derek Walcott & Donald Hinkson • SUNY-Albany Art Museum exhibit, 1998
Derek Walcott--Themes • binary oppositions: white and back, colonizer and colonizer, British and West Indian synthesis, hybrid identity • Odyssey: voyaging, travel through cultures and space; Omeros (Homerus/Homer, Joyce, Dante--terza rima in The Divine Comedy)--“the Homeric quality of Caribbean life”
John Donne--“Meditation XVII” • “No man is an island entirely of itself, every man is piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend’s or of thine own were. Any man’s death diminishes me because I am involved In mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.”
Walcott and Crusoe • “Walcott’s Crusoe is the emptied, receptive self. He is Columbus, by accident discovering the New World; he is Adam in a second Eden, giving its names. Unlike Prospero, he is demotic, for ‘Crusoe is no lord of magic, duke, prince. He does not possess the island he inhabits….He acts, not by authority, but by conscience.’” --Louis James