A bright spot in a dark day

In keeping up with the coverage of the London bombings today, I have to admit that my feelings have alternated between intense sorrow for the victims and slack-jawed awe at the speed and breadth of coverage at Wikipedia.

Wikis are incredibly good tools for capturing and organizing information online, and they work especially well when there’s a dedicated community involved. If you’re reading this, please remember that we need your help to grow The Louverture Project’s wiki. Take a look at the page above and think about how powerful the collective actions of like-minded individuals can be.

New Orleans: Haitian Drum Workshops

Master Drummer Frisner Augustin will give Haitian drum workshops twice daily from July 11 through July 16, at Kay Mystique, a New Orleans Vodou temple. See the Kay Mystique site for details, or sign up at New Orleans Mystic.

Students who take classes that week will have a chance on Saturday, July 16th, to perform with members of La Troupe Makandal, a Haitian dance ensemble.

Creole Creative Writing Contest

Eastern Digital Resources is sponsoring a creative writing contest to promote “new and emerging Haitian authors and to encourage reading and writing in Creole.” Twelve to fifteen authors will be selected to be published in The Best of Creole – 2005, and judges will award a $100 prize to one author.

The deadline for submissions is August 31, 2005, and a broad range of manuscripts will be accepted. See the website for full details.

Haitian history book for sale

This notice popped up on the wiki recently, and I thought I’d repeat the message here. There’s a used copy of Black Democracy, the Story of Haiti, by H.P. Davis, available for sale by one of our wiki readers. Click here for the message and email address. Even though it was written in 1928, Bob Corbett calls this book the second-best history of Haiti in English.

By the way if you’re at all interested in Haitian history, you must know about Professor Corbett. His site is is an invaluable resource for the casual scholar, and his mailing list is a place of lively and enlightening debate. The good professor also has a sizable chunk of his personal library availble for sale. Click here for a current list.

Miami: get ready for Vodou Fest 2005

Musifest Productions and Sosyete Koukouy, Inc., will present the second annual “Vodou Fest 2005” at Bayfront Park Tina Hill Pavillon located at 301 N Biscayne Boulevard, downtown Miami, Florida on Saturday July 16, 2005 from 5:00 PM to midnight.

Accompanying lectures and public symposia will also be held at Broward Library Auditorium (Fort Lauderdale) on June 12, 6:00 PM and Libreri Mapou June 30, 7:00 PM.

Musifest productions will explore and celebrate the impact and influence of African based traditions. The unique network of cultural traditions of Haitian vodou, Cuban santeria, Brazilian camdoble, and Tridadian shango traditions continue to provide an important link to the African roots of these cultures through rhythm, dance, oral history, art, and song.

Vodou Fest 2005 is an opportunity to analyze and commorate African based traditions and their contribution to Caribbean societies. It is an opportunity to begin a new and more positive public and cultural discourse regarding African based cultural traditions.

“Vodou Fest 2005” will feature Vodou Arts Exhibition International and local renowned roots music bands performing traditional rhythmic vodou inspired music and vodou rituals for the first time in a public forum: Kampech, djanaye , vodou presentation by Hougan Papa Paul, Erol Josue, the Mirabo twins, Emperor Aboudja, Manbo Carole Maroule, Grupo Batuque (Afro Urigue) Jude Papa Loco, Ifeile (Afro Cuban) Delou (West Africa) and more, Native Indians (Blessind).

Admission: All conferences are free

All children under 10 are free

Adults: $15 In advance

For more information please contact Musifest Productions:

Att: Ingrid Llera,


Phone: 954 438-7772 Cell: 786 277-4693 Fax: 954 438-7772

Sosyete Koukouy, Inc (305) 757-9922

EventGuide Miami: Vodou Fest 2005 – Event Information

Encyclopedia of Slave Resistance and Rebellions

An interesting attempt at collaboration is going on at Greenwood Publishing Group. I’d love to see a project like this done as a wiki.

Work has begun on The Encyclopedia of Slave Resistance and Rebellions, to be edited by Junius P. Rodriguez and published by Greenwood Press. Scheduled to appear in June 2007, the work will comprise alphabetically arranged entries on all aspects of the subject and is intended to provide an overview of current scholarship in the field.

This single volume 350,000-word encyclopedia will cover the history of slave resistance and rebellion from antiquity to the late-nineteenth century. Entries will consist of specific incidents, individuals, concepts, thematic essays, and artistic/literary renderings of slave resistance and rebellion.

A listing of topics available and other project information can be viewed at: http://www.eureka.edu/emp/jrodrig/greenwood/rr.htm If you are interested in writing encyclopedia entries for this project inquiries should be addressed to:

Dr. Junius P. Rodriguez

Eureka College

300 East College Avenue

Eureka, Illinois 61530

Email = jrodrig@eureka.edu

Phone: (309) 467-6416

Fax: (309) 467-6386

Should you encounter any key topics that are not listed as proposed articles, please feel free to suggest these to me and I will update the list accordingly.

Please feel free to share this information with colleagues who may have an interest in contributing articles for this publication.

Call for submissions to the 17th Annual Conference of the Haitian Studies Association

The Seventeenth Annual Conference of the Haitian Studies Association (H.S.A)

October 13-15, 2005 * Campus Center * Ballroom A

University of Massachusetts Boston

Boston, Massachusetts 02125-3393


The Seventeenth Annual Conference of the Haitian Studies association, to be held on October 13-15, 2005, at the University of Massachusetts Boston, will be devoted to the theme ‘Haiti Chérie’: Creating New Pathways for Tomorrow.

As Haiti enters its third century, it has reached yet another crossroad at which it needs to reevaluate its past and set its course for the future. The 17th annual conference of the Haitian Studies Association will foster dialogues about the abundant richness of Haiti’s heritage, capture the creative spirit of its people, envision solutions to its present impasse, and trace new pathways for the future.

The 17th Annual Conference is accepting panel proposals, and individual papers on all aspects of Haiti’s rich legacy, past, present, and future. Among the topics that might be considered are Haiti’s distinguished historical, cultural, and political traditions that have shaped the creative spirit of its people. Creating new pathways for tomorrow is rooted in the conception of envisioned models that rely on fundamental choices between continuity with the past and change for the future. The presentations may examine economic and political possibilities that lay ahead. Participants may focus on issues crossing multiple race/class/gender and population lines and covering topics from forced migration, life histories, immigration, environment, health, contemporary Haitian popular culture and arts are strongly encouraged.

Deadline for submission is June 15, 2005.

For additional information please contact Cassandra Villari at: hsa@umb.edu

Haitian Studies Project

University of Massachusetts Boston

Boston, Ma 02125-3393

Tel: (617) 287-7138 or 7166 Fax: (617) 287-6797

The Gospel of Thomas in English, Haitian Creole and French

Hans-Gebhard Bethge, Benjamin Hebblethwaite Jacques Pierre, and Michel Weber have collaborated on a multi-lingual translation of the Gospel of Thomas.

From Professor Hebblethwaite’s website:

The Gospel of Thomas was discovered in 1945 with a cache of books in Nag Hammadi, Egypt. The Christian and Gnostic books had been hidden on a hillside for 1,600 years. As book burnings spread in the Church in the late 4th century, an unknown monastic hid these scrolls for safe-keeping.

The Gospel of Thomas is of immense value because it dates from the same period as the canonical gospels and because it is a remarkable record of what numerous scholars claim are the actual teachings of Jesus.

The introduction synthesizes the leading exegetical and historical research in a bilingual Haitian Creole and English facing-page format. The text of The Gospel of Thomas appears in a trilingual facing-page format.

This book is designed for general readers, students and scholars of English, Haitian Creole and French. This volume is an excellent tool for accelerated learning and for diving into the depth of the Apostle Thomas’ tradition.

Dr. Hans-Gebhard Bethge’s widely praised English translation appears in an updated version. The Haitian Creole and French translations are based upon Dr. Bethge’s English text. The Haitian Creole translation appears for the first time in print.

Buy the book online here: Amazon.com: Books: The Gospel of Thomas in English, Haitian Creole and French:

New Yorkers – Free film showing

The New York Film and Video Festival is running in New York from April 28th through May 5th. On Monday, May 2nd, at 4:10 on Screen Two, the festival will show Kendy Vérilus’ Thompson The Great. From the website:

bq. After 200 years of Independence, Thompson The Great (Amboise Thompson), an octogenarian believes that he can talk to Jean Jacques Dessalines, The father of the Nation. This film is about life in a poor country with 200 years of Independence.

Wiki Wiki Everywhere

Wiki news and developments have been popping up everywhere. For example, the good folks at Gadgetopia noticed a couple of interesting things taking shape at Wikipedia. First are WikiReaders, collections of articles from Wikipedia in PDF form. At some point, I’ll see about adapting this script that does PDF conversions. Currently, it only manages Wikipedia articles, but it’d sure be nice to be able to offer the same service for readers of The Louverture Project.

Next up are WikiProjects, meant to organize articles within certain families of information.

Next, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales, whose blog is available here, notes that Wikipedia has been cited as a reference in a legal opinion.

Also from the good folks at Wikipedia, visit Wikicities, a collection of informal, community-based websites on diverse topics from technology to language to sport.