A SERIES OF TALKS SPONSORED BY SISTER CITIES ESSEX HAITI
ESSEX TOWN HALL AUDITORIUM
Thursday Evenings from 7:00pm- 8:00pm
Haiti: Stories of Early Days to Present (Thursday, September 10th)
Bob Lamothe, Sister Cities Essex Haiti board member, who came to the US at the age of 12, is a graduate of Yale University and also holds a Master’s Degree in Architecture at Columbia University. He is a Professor at Norwalk Community College and also teaches Kreyol at Yale. Bob will present “The History of Haiti: Early Days to Present”, the first of our lecture series which will combine interesting insights on both historical and more recent history. You won’t want to miss Bob’s lively and fascinating accounts of the history of Haiti, gathered from his own studies as a student in Haiti and later in Yale’s Sterling Library as well as more recent ancestral family stories.
Literature of Haiti: Historical Influences Past and Present (Thursday, September 17th)
Patrick Sylvain is a poet, writer, translator, and academic. He is a faculty member at Brown University’s Center for Language Studies. Patrick will speak about the history and influences onHaitian literature and focus most recently on literature of Haitian writers, both those living in Haiti and abroad. Mr. Sylvain has taught as a lecturer at Harvard, Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), Tufts University and University of Massachusetts. He is published in several anthologies, academic journals, books, magazines and reviews. He has been featured in: PBS’s NewsHour, NPR’s Here & Now and The Story, he was also a contributing editor to the Boston Haitian Reporter. Sylvain’s academic essays are anthologized in several edited collections, including: “The Idea of Haiti: Rethinking Crisis and Development,” and “Politics and Power in Haiti”. Sylvain graduated from Harvard University Graduate School of Education as a Conant Fellow where he received his ED.M; and also holds an MFA from Boston University where he was a Robert Pinsky Global Fellow.
Art of Haiti & Recent Restoration Efforts (Thursday, September 24th)
Erica Moiah James, Assistant Professor in the History of Art and of African American Studies at Yale University; Mark Aronson, Chief Conservator of Art at Yale Center for British Art; and Matthew Cushman, Haitian Project Conservator at Yale’s Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage will speak about the visual art of Haiti, including the restoration efforts that begun in the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake, and subsequent work at Yale University directed at the preservation of a suite of nineteenth century Haitian portraits. The Rigaud portraits, a collection at the Yale Peabody Museum which depicts the early leaders of Haiti, have become the subject of an institutional and international collaborative project, bringing Haitian conservators, first involved with the Smithsonian Institution’s Cultural Recovery Project in Port-au-Prince, to New Haven for further training in Yale’s conservation laboratories. Come hear about a general overview of Haitian art and more recent work restoring portraits of Haitian Presidents which provide opportunities for Haitian restorers to work with the conservators at Yale to advance their skills.
Birds of Haiti and Connecticut –Migrators and Locals (Thursday, October 1st)
Bob Lamothe, Sister Cities Essex Haiti Board member and Professor, is an avid photographer and ornithologist. His interest in birds began as a youngster. He was fascinated by their communication skills; different calls for different reasons. At a young age he realized roosters would give a specific warning signal to the hens to take shelter when a hawk appeared overhead. That led Bob to deeper observations of all sorts of birds in Haiti. He continued that interest when he moved to CT and focused and honed much of his photographic skills on birds and their activities. He found that many of the birds he knew in Haiti were here in CT as well, either as permanent residents of both areas or as migrating birds. He has a vast collection of photos of birds that are unique to each area. Bob’s passion for ornithology and photography combine to make this an outstanding talk.
Sister Cities Essex Haiti Making a difference in Deschapelles Haiti (October 15th) Come hear about the work of Sister Cities Essex Haiti. Sister Cities Essex Haiti, formed after the 2010 earthquake, has initiated projects in collaboration with the community in teacher training, music, tennis and cross-cultural activities and the creation of a community library.
MUSIC PROJECT UPDATE
Who would have dreamed that the first efforts of Sister Cities Essex Haiti’s music project in 2012 would result in the first-ever performance in Deschapelles of a classical chamber concert with six musicians from the Ecole de Musique from Ste. Trinite in Port au Prince? To learn more, click here. CROSS CULTURAL EXCHANGE PROJECT Essex Elementary School students and students in Deschapelles continue to exchange their experiences and learn about one another’s culture. To learn more, click here.
Continued great progress!! The roof is on, the floor is laid, the windows and doors are on! Even the road to the library is getting a tune-up”. Soon, children like this little girl will have a place to read and study. For more good news, click here.
OUR LATEST BENEFIT WAS A GREAT SUCCESS!!! Thank you to all you joined us October 5, to support our organization and the people of Dschapelles. Many thanks as well to William Pitt Sotheby’s, the Foxboro Foundation and Thompson & Peck for their early support!
SISTER CITIES ESSEX HAITI RECIPIENT OF SCI 2014 INNOVATION AWARD!! Sister Cities International selected Sister Cities Essex Haiti as the recipient of their 2014 Innovation Award in Youth & Education for a population of less than 100,000!!! The award was given for SCEH’s Early Education Teacher Training Project. SCI established the Annual Awards Program in 1962 to bring international recognition to “exceptional sister city programs”. We are extremely grateful to have received this award. To learn more about the award, please click here. And to see a video about the Teacher Training Project, click here! SISTER CITIES HAS A “HAITI SHELF” AT THE ESSEX LIBRARY Want to know more about Haiti? The Essex Library now has a “Haiti Shelf” by the front door. There are fiction and non-fiction books about the history, culture, and people of Haiti. Come check it out!