Jamaica declares November 23rd Mary Seacole Day

Jamaica is hurrying down towards Christmas now, it seems. Not a gallop yet – just a gentle canter. Lots of happenings and running up and down, and things seem a little brighter and more lively than last year’s season, which was fairly glum. There is some cheerful news here, though. The Government of Jamaica has … More Jamaica declares November 23rd Mary Seacole Day

The Reimagining Nanny Project: An open call for artists to participate

Nanny is the only woman among Jamaica’s National Heroes, and in many ways the most mysterious. When I think of Nanny, Queen of the Maroons, I think of mountain mists and waterfalls and dark hiding places and ambushes in the rain. Now there is an open call for artists to “reimagine” and interpret her spirit, … More The Reimagining Nanny Project: An open call for artists to participate

A clarification/correction on Jamaica’s vaccination numbers; and new COVID restrictions start tomorrow

I have to confess I am not good at numbers. So I made an error in yesterday’s account of the Ministry of Health and Wellness briefing on COVID-19. Let me set it straight. I noted yesterday: “Over 300,000 have received their first dose. This includes 122,000 who have received their second.” Incorrect! (I have removed … More A clarification/correction on Jamaica’s vaccination numbers; and new COVID restrictions start tomorrow

Institute of Jamaica announces 2021 Musgrave Medal awardees

The Musgrave Medals, awarded each year by the Institute of Jamaica, did not happen last year, due to COVID-19. Last year was a cultural non-event in Jamaica, basically. But this year, they are on! I am especially delighted by Steven Woodham’s Gold Medal. A gifted violinist, he has never rested on his laurels and fed … More Institute of Jamaica announces 2021 Musgrave Medal awardees

African Caribbean Institute Focuses on Storytelling for Black History Month

We are aware of the legacy of the oral tradition that Jamaica inherited from West Africa. Unfortunately, the storytelling tradition is often only wheeled out on special occasions and for cultural events, with only a handful of practitioners keeping the tradition alive. I recently heard renowned actor Oliver Samuels talking about his childhood in St. … More African Caribbean Institute Focuses on Storytelling for Black History Month

A Rare Gem in Puerto Bueno: The Endangered Blue Kite Swallowtail

Let’s take a pause. As the debate over Puerto Bueno Mountain appears to be becoming more rancorous (at least on social media), I would like to point to what I consider a critical aspect of what has become a “controversy.” A great deal has been said lately about “environmentalists” – a label that has become … More A Rare Gem in Puerto Bueno: The Endangered Blue Kite Swallowtail

It’s Heritage Week in Jamaica, But Some of our Heritage is Looking the Worse for Wear

We went for a stroll around the neighborhood this morning – but not a leisurely stroll as thunder was rumbling all around. The streets were very quiet, as today is National Heroes’ Day, a public holiday. This week is Heritage Week, when we reflect on the legacy of our National Heroes, and on our history … More It’s Heritage Week in Jamaica, But Some of our Heritage is Looking the Worse for Wear

Minister Vaz’s Bid for Land in the Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park: Can We Please Protect our Protected Areas?

Yesterday (June 16), a report by the excellent environmental reporter and Associate Editor of the Jamaica Observer Kimone Thompson appeared in the newspaper with the headline “Government wants to lease Holywell land.” The article did not mention the name of the government minister, who reportedly wished to lease a piece of land in the Blue and John … More Minister Vaz’s Bid for Land in the Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park: Can We Please Protect our Protected Areas?

Thoughts on International Women’s Day 2020 and the Disappearance of Jasmine Dean

This could turn into a long post, because there is “so much things to say,” as Bob Marley sang. Where to start? I have been browsing, reading, and writing, for most of the day. There were of course several events for International Women’s Day in Jamaica, including a tribute to Mary Seacole at the Institute … More Thoughts on International Women’s Day 2020 and the Disappearance of Jasmine Dean

The Natural History Museum’s Earth Day Arts Competition for Children and Youth: Deadline March 9!

The Natural History Museum of Jamaica (NHMJ), a division of the Institute of Jamaica, is inviting entries for its 2020 Earth Day Competition, which has the theme: Countdown to 2030: Vision of a Healthy Environment.  As Earth Day reaches its milestone 50th anniversary in April 2020, nature and the environment are facing incredible and unprecedented challenges … More The Natural History Museum’s Earth Day Arts Competition for Children and Youth: Deadline March 9!