“Banjotibo”, Rita Dahomay’s posthumous book

The writer Rita Dahomay

“Banjotibo, Âges et Sentiments sur les ailes du temps” (Banjotibo, ages and feelings on the wings of time) is the full title of Rita Dahomay’s latest novel published by Editions Nèg Mawon in December 2020. Guadeloupean writer died in 2019.

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“Banjotibo was the French teacher that all the girls loved at the Teacher Training College in Morne Ferret. He was old and sick when he decided to return to the country Guadeloupe of his loves”, it is with these two sentences that the story told by Rita Dahomay is presented. Guadeloupean writer deals with – by tracing parts of the Guadeloupe of yesteryear – the “difficult theme of passing time and age-related pathologies”. She mixed, as she used to do, personal and family memories. However, she wanted the book “Banjotibo” to be “full of lightness, filled with laughter and songs, thanks to a vivid and sparkling writing”.

The author, who was passionate about history and literature, unfortunately did not have the time to attend the release and presentation of her book by Editions Nèg Mawon as she died in the town of Sainte-Rose in Guadeloupe in December 2019 at the age of 75. It is her daughter Karina who promotes the novel, she was present at the literary evening of December 9 at the Librairie Générale, in Baie-Mahault.

After being a teacher, Rita Dahomay who was born in Pointe-à-Pitre was the director of the Sainte-Rose nursery school from 1970 to 1996 and of the Anquetil primary school in Les Abymes from 1996 to 2001. She was a woman invested in her teaching career, in her political and cultural fights – with her twin sister Lita – for a more just and egalitarian society. During her retirement, she devoted herself to writing. In 2010, she published “Métrèslékol”, at Editions Jasor, a book about the school system and, in 2015, “Dodo pitit ou le Départ du fils”, at Editions Nestor, a novel about the delinquent Tijo Levoici and his mother, Mandèdèt.

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