Juneteenth, Freedom and Financial Bondage: From Dr. Anne C. Bailey’s Blog


I am shamelessly copying and pasting from my friend Dr. Anne C. Bailey’s blog. You can find the link here. Anne blogs (and writes books, and teaches) about “race, slavery, refugees, diasporas, African American, Caribbean and African studies, human rights, history, and memory.” I always learn so much from her. Here is her latest post, … More  Juneteenth, Freedom and Financial Bondage: From Dr. Anne C. Bailey’s Blog

A Jamaican Connection to the Parkland Shooting, and A Letter to the Students


The mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida is haunting us all in Jamaica, as well as across the United States and around the world. We are so close (geographically, and otherwise) to that particular state that we feel touched by anything that happens there. There are over 200,000 Jamaicans living … More A Jamaican Connection to the Parkland Shooting, and A Letter to the Students

Emancipation Day: Working on the Mental Part


“Emancipate yourself from mental slavery, None but ourselves can free our minds.” That was Bob Marley quoting Marcus Mosiah Garvey (1937) in his “Redemption Song” (1980). Mr. Marley’s lyrics consist of many quotations, Jamaican sayings and proverbs, woven into his thoughts. He was good at that. And today in Jamaica is Emancipation Day, August 1. A national holiday, … More Emancipation Day: Working on the Mental Part

African Postman: The Legacy of Slavery in Zanzibar, Tanzania


Jamaica‘s Emancipation Day (August 1) is not far away. With our fiftieth anniversary of Independence we are looking forward – but we have also looked back at our history, and the history we share with other nations. One of those experiences, which can never be forgotten, is slavery. In Jamaica, we associate West Africa with … More African Postman: The Legacy of Slavery in Zanzibar, Tanzania

Illuminate Me, Baby


“Everything is illuminated in the light of the past.” So says Alex (played by the marvelous Eugene Hutz) at the end of the 2005 film “Everything Is Illuminated,” which has become a Petchary Instant Classic ever since I first watched it on cable with my son. Illumination is a beautiful word, isn’t it?  It glows, … More Illuminate Me, Baby

History


Well, whose history, is always the question.  In the case of this part of California, it of course all began with the native peoples, and then came the Spanish.  Sounds a little familiar to us Jamaicans. Take the exquisitely beautiful Monterey Peninsula, for example.  The Rumsien Indians lived there for thousands of years, moving seasonally … More History