Festival Écritures des Amériques: where are our local writers?

From November 14 to 23, 2019, in Martinique and Guadeloupe, the Festival Écritures des Amériques (from November 14 to 17 in Martinique and November 18 to 23 in Guadeloupe) takes place with the participation of a dozen writers from the Caribbean, North America, South America, Europe…

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With the aim of democratizing literature, the organization of the Festival Écritures des Amériques planned many literary meetings on the territories.

In the sister island, the launch of the event took place on Thursday, November 14 at the Habitation Grand Case in the city of Le Lamentin and literary meetings were held in Le Lamentin, Sainte-Marie, Saint-Pierre and Trois-Îlets.

In Guadeloupe, the opening of the Festival took place at the Résidence Départementale in the city of Le Gosier on Monday, November 18. The schedule of literary meetings is very complete since discussions are planned in Basse-Terre, Goyave, Les Abymes, Petit-Bourg, Le Moule, Saint-Claude, Sainte-Anne, Saint-François, Port Louis and even on the islands of Marie-Galante and St. Barthélemy.

For this 2019 edition, the public is invited to discuss with twelve writers from several countries: Miguel Bonnefoy (France-Venezuela), David Foenkinos (France; Prix Renaudot and Prix Goncourt des Lycéens 2014), Santiago Gamboa (Colombia), Douglas Kennedy (USA), Viktor Lazlo (France), Gaël Octavia (Martinique), Makenzy Orcel (Haiti), Véronique Ovaldé (France), Léonor de Récondo (France), Mayra Santos-Febres (Puerto Rico), Gary Victor (Haiti) and Ali Zamir (Comoros).

Among the issues, there are: the power of literature, the fabulous landscapes of the 2019 edition, the discovery of the world through the detective novel, the voice of women, the fantasies of destiny, the real life of heroes etc.

As at La Pagerie in Martinique, on Sunday, November 17, music, dance and reading will celebrate literature with local artists on Saturday, November 23, in Beauport, to close the event.

However, when we look at the program of the Festival Écritures des Amériques, we wonder about the place dedicated to our authors in Martinique and Guadeloupe, those who can talk about what happens in the “bowels” of our islands. Of course it’s interesting a festival with foreign guests to discover others worlds and to enrich debates but this event is also an opportunity to enhance and encourage a larger number of local authors, established and beginners.

In addition, the Centre Culturel Sonis in Les Abymes was presented as the “headquarters” of the Festival, but when we went there on Tuesday, November 19, we only found a banner and some leaflets…

It must be noted that the “Prix des Amériques Insulaires” which became in 2015 the Festival Écritures des Amériques was created in 2000 following a meeting between writer Maryse Condé and industrialist Amédée Huyghues-Despointes.