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A la maison du Québec à St-Malo

A la maison du Québec à St-Malo


H[ubert] Nigel Thomas: Biographical Note

I was born on the Caribbean island of Saint Vincent, in a place called Dickson, actually named for one of my colonial ancestors. In fact, my maternal grandfather, in whose household I lived from age three, was John Dickson, grandson of that colonial ancestor.

I am the third of four children—all boys—resulting from my parents’ marriage. I have several half-brothers and a half-sister, my father’s children, some I have not yet met, some with whom I’m in close contact. At an early age I bonded with my maternal grandmother, Hester Roban Dickson, a warm, affectionate woman, in spite of her strict, no-nonsense ways. She died when I was eleven.  My grandfather (her husband) was an avid reader.  He’d had several careers: shopkeeper, schoolteacher, carpenter, mine manager in Venezuela and Colombia, sugar plantation manager in Cuba. He taught me to read before I went to school, and after that he challenged me to perform beyond the school curriculum; best of all, he was full of stories about his travels and his childhood. I dedicated my novel Behind the Face of Winter to their memory.

I immigrated to Canada in 1968. The reasons were many: 1. I desired to experience life on a continental scale. St. Vincent is about three hundred square kilometres.  Most people live in small villages. Life there is very insular and traditional. As a child I was forced to listen to advice, some of it silly, from people whose lives were evident failures.  2. I felt a strong need to go to university, and it  was not clear that I would have done so if I’d remained in St. Vincent. 3. There was no space in St. Vincent for someone with a same-sex orientation. One suspected of being gay was verbally harassed; one known to be gay was physically and verbally abused and barred from employment in teaching and the civil service. 4. It’s a society where youngsters, male and female, are flogged in school—sometimes  several times in a single day, sometimes during a single lesson—at home; and in the law courts—on the authority of the Old Testament scriptures. It revolted me. (Corporal punishment is still practised there, in schools, in homes and in the law courts, and vigorously defended with sanctimonious and theological arguments).

In Saint Vincent, I worked briefly as an elementary school teacher, a high school teacher, and a civil servant. Shortly after my arrival Montreal in 1968, I studied psychiatric nursing for two years at Douglas Hospital. I worked part-time as a mental health worker while attending Concordia University: 1969-1975, and McGill University: 1975-1976. I graduated with a B.A., 1974; M.A., 1975; and a Diploma in Secondary Education, 1976. In 1976, I began a twelve-year career teaching English and French at the Protestant School Board of Greater Montreal (now the English Montreal School Board), a career I periodically interrupted to pursue doctoral studies at l’Université de Montréal, from which I graduated with a Ph.D. in 1986. In 1988 I began a career as assistant professor of U.S. literature at Université Laval and held the rank of Professeur titulaire when I retired in 2006 to devote myself to writing full-time.

I have been one of the fortunate few who have been able to find rewarding work in their chosen field. At age ten I said  that I wanted to  become a teacher when I grew up.  (I’m not sure I grew up, but I have been a teacher at pretty well all the levels, from kindergarten to doctoral). Childhood caprice? Quite possibly. But it’s a bit more complex. The rural elementary school I attended was staffed by untrained poorly educated teachers, more skilled at imparting welts than knowledge. But that year, 1957, my teacher was Viola John, a trained, intellectually-outstanding, creative woman. I was fascinated by how she taught as well as what she taught. Mrs . John did not flog her students. She had no need to. I wanted to become the sort of teacher that she was.

My arrival in Montreal (at age 21) deepened a compulsion I already had to probe my identity and to resist those who sought to restrict me. Needless to say, those issues, which are ongoing, have influenced my writing. But above all, it’s the mystery of the human psyche that intrigues me—this and the awareness that survival is the fundamental instinct driving human behaviour, even when such behaviour seems inimical to survival. Writing imaginatively is one way for me to explore such issues. – Nigel.


Curriculum Vitae

 

PUBLICATIONS:

 

BOOKS

  • No Safeguards (forthcoming) Toronto: Guernica, 2015.
  • When the Bottom Falls Out and Other Stories (forthcoming) Toronto: TSAR, Fall 2014
  • Des vies cassées (translation by Alexie Doucet of Lives: Whole and Otherwise. Montréal: Mémoire d’encrier, 2014.
  • Lives Whole and Otherwise. (short fiction) TSAR 2010. 147 pp.
  • Return to Arcadia (novel). Toronto : TSAR Publications, 2007.
  • Why We Write: Conversations with African Canadian Poets and Novelists.Toronto: TSAR Publications, 2006. 244 pp
  • Behind the Face of Winter: (novel). Toronto: TSAR Publications) 2001. 238 pp.  (conference papers; taught at York, Montreal & Laval in 2012-13)        
  • Moving Through Darkness (Poetry) Saint-Laurent, QC: Afo Enterprises.  2000.     83 pp.  
  • How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow? (short stories). Saint-Laurent, Quebec: Afo, 1996. 124 pp. (Taught in University courses, subject of conference papers).
  • Spirits in the Dark (novel). Toronto: House of Anansi Press, 1993 and Oxford & Portsmouth, NH:  Heinemann (Caribbean Writers Series), 1994. 219 pp. (Finalist for QSPELL/Hugh MacClennan Fiction Award (1994) Taught in postcolonial literature & gay and lesbian studies; subject of articles, dissertation chapters, conference papers.
  • From Folklore to Fiction:  Folk Heroes and Rituals in the Black American Novel. Contributions in Afro-American and African Studies, number 118. London, New York, and Westport, CT:  Greenwood Press, 1988. 213 pp.

                

  FICTION (in Journals & anthologies)

 

  •  “Unusual Gardening”.  Montreal Serai. Jan 26, 2014
  • “Emory” (short fiction). In Beyond Sangre Grande:Caribbean Writing Today. Ed. Cyril Dabydeen. Toronto: TSAR, 2012.
  • “Jerome”  ( (Excerpt from Spirits in the Dark).In Our Caribbean:An Anthology of Caribbean Gay and Lesbian Literature. Ed. Thomas Glave. Duke University Press, 2008.pp. 355-359.
  • “The Village Ram” (short fiction). Making a Difference: Canadian Multicultural Literatures in English. Smaro Kamboureli, ed.  Don Mills, Ontario: Oxford University Press, 2007. 173-184.
  • “How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow?” (short fiction). Revival: An Anthology of Black Canadian Writing. Donna Bailey Nurse, ed.  Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 2006. 117-131
  • “Another Journey” (forthcoming). Wadabagei. A Journal of the Caribbean and its Diaspora.
  • “The Village Cock.”  Nalo Hopkinson, ed. Whispers from the Cotton Tree Root: Caribbean Fabulist Fiction. Montpelier, VT:Invisible Cities Press, 2000. 97-110.
  • Bones in the Closet,” Wadabagei: A Journal of the Caribbean and its Diaspora:2: 1 (Winter/Spring 1999). 113-144.      
  • [Chapter 3] Spirits in the Dark. In Eyeing the North Star: Directions in Canadian Literature. George Elliott Clarke, Ed. Toronto: McClelland & Stewart, 1997. 99-110.
  • “Spiders.”  Kola vol 8:1 (spring 1996). 6-17.
  • “Ramcat.”  Extract from Spirits in the Dark.    Etudes littéraires 25 (3)  (Hiver 92-3).
  • “Death of a Murderess.”  Matatu    10 (Frankfurt) 1993. 179-187 (In How Loud).
  • “No Balm in Gilead.”  Kola 4 (3)  (Summer 1991).  7-17  (RJ).
  • “Percy’s Illness.”  Notebook/ Cuaderno   6 (2)  (1990).   1-18 (RJ).
  • “Bankruptcy.”  New Canadian Review   2  (2)  (summer 1990). 22-30.
  • “Maude.”  Kola  4 (1)  (summer 1990).  24-35.
  • “A Little Shaky at the Knees but Standing Up.”  Caribe  (April 1989).
  • “Robertson Remembers.”  Caribe   3 (3) (December 1989).  17-20. (Incl. in How Loud).
  • “The Headmaster’s Visitor.” Kola 2  (2)  (summer 1988). 13-17 & 19-27. (Inc. in How Loud).
  • “The Graduation.”  Caribe  (December 1987).  12-13.
  • “Bushy’s Return.”  Kola 1 (3)  (autumn 1987).  23-34. (Incl. in How Loud).
  • “The House on the Hill.”  Kola 1 (1)  (spring 1987).  5-23. (Incl. in How Loud).
  • “At the Market.”   Rubicon (autumn 1984) and Fatal Recurrences:  New Fiction from Montreal.  Edited by Hugh Hood and Peter O’Brien.  Montreal: Vehicule Press, 1984.  119-124.

        POETRY (in journals & anthologies)

  • “Desire,” “Boy-Child,” “Nigger-Kike-Honky-Wop.” Seminal: The Anthology of Canada’s Gay Male Poets. Edited by John Barton & Billeh Nickerson. Vancouver: Arsenal Pulp, 2007. 197-199
  • “Exile”, “Saturday Night Stalking,” “A Peep behind the Veil,” “In the Beginning Was the Word”. Kola  10:1 (1998). 63-66.
  • “Exile.”   The Literary Half-Yearly XXXVIII 1.  11.
  • “Portraits” (3 poems). The Literary Half-Yearly.  XXXVII (1) (January 1996). 7-8.
  • “See.” Epasa Moto. 1 (2) (January 1995). 102.
  • “The Empire Writes” ARIEL 24 (1) (January 1993). 78.
  • “On Listening to the Sea,” “The Return,”  “See,” and “Georgetown Cemetery.”  In Vincentian Poets: 1950-1980.  Edited by T. Anthony Joyette.  Montreal:  Afo Publications.  1991.  66-70.
  • “Epigrams:  Manichean Folly.”  The Rap    (July 1987).  4.
  • “On Listening to the Sea.”  Poetry Today Magazine   (Summer 1984).  38.
  • “Cease,”  “Action.”   Thumbprints (spring 1976).  16 & 28-29.

        LITERARY CRITICISM

                               (ARTICLES )

  • “Some Aspects of Blues Use in George Elliot Clarke’s Whylah Falls.” In Africadian Atlantic: Essays on George Elliott Clarke. Toronto, Guernica Editions, 2012.
  • Afterword to Arrival of the Snake-Woman by Olive Senior. TSAR publications , 2009. Pp.  159-169.
  • “Cecil Foster’s Sleep on, Beloved: A Depiction of the Consequences of Racism in Canadian Immigration Policy.” Journal of Black Studies 38:3 (January 2008).  484-501
  • “Another Look at the ‘Seven Days’ in Toni Morrison’s Song of SolomonLiterary Griot 13:1 & 2 (Spring/Fall 2001). 147-159.
  • Richard Wright.”   Emmanuel Nelson, Ed.  Dictionary of African American Autobiographers.   Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2002. 
  • “Some Aspects of Blues Use in George Elliot Clarke’s Whylah Falls. CLA Journal XLIII 1 (September 1999). 1-18.
  • “Langston Hughes and Patronage: A Paradoxical Case.” CLA Journal XLII 1  (September 1998), 48-70. Reprinted in Harold Bloom, Ed. Modern Critical Views: Langston Hughes. New York: Chelsea House, 2007.
  • “Aspects of Leon Forrest’s Fictional Representation of the Inherited Trauma of Slavery in The Bloodworth Orphans.”  La représentation de l’identité culturelle dans le roman nord-américain depuis 1960: Canada, États-Unis, Mexique. . Eds. Richard Saint-Gelais and Wil Verhoeven. Québec, QC: Nuit Blanche. 1998. 209-224.
  • “Claude McKay’s Banana Bottom: A Black Response to Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century White Discourse on the Meaning of Black Reality.”  In Nationalism vs. Internationalism: (Inter)National Dimensions of Literatures in English. Tübingen, Germany, 1996. 379-388.
  • “The Bad Nigger Figure in Selected Works by Richard Wright, Ernest Gaines, and William Melvin Kelley.” College Language Association Journal.   XXXIX 2 (December 1995). 143-164.
  • “Caliban’s Voice: Marlene Nourbese Philip’s Response to Western Hegemonic Discourse.” Studies in the Literary Imagination. XXV1 2 (Fall 1993). 63-76.
  • “Black Writers, White Critics: Claude McKay’s Home to Harlem.” Claude McKay Centennial Studies.  Edited by Alan McLeod. New Delhi: Sterling Press, 1993. 160-172.
  • “Form and Ideology in Claude McKay’s Banana Bottom.”  The Literary Griot 3 (2)  (Fall 1991). 62-76.
  • “Le personnage de Bad John dans les romans de Earl Lovelace.”  In Juan Bobo, Jan Sot, Ti Jan et Bad John: Figures Littéraires de la Caraïbe. Edité par Maximilien Laroche.  Universite Laval: GRELCA 7, 1991 39-57.
  • “Alice Walker’s Grange Copeland as a Trickster Figure.”  Obsidian II:  Black Literature in Review.   6 (1)  (Spring 1991). 60-72.
  • “‘Progress’ and ‘Community’ in the Novels of Earl Lovelace.”  World Literature Written in English 31 (1) (1991). 1-7.
  • “From ‘Freedom’ to ‘Liberation':  An Interview with Earl Lovelace.”  World Literature Written in English 31 (1) (1991).  12-20.
  • “Some Narrative Strategies in the Short Fiction of Bessie Head.” In A Tragic Life:  Bessie Head and Literature in Southern Africa.   Edited by Cecil Abrahams. Trenton, NJ:  Africa World Press, 1990.  93-103.
  • “Opposing Viewpoints: Richard Wright’s and Aimé Césaire’s Perceptions of Africa.” In The Literature of Africa and the African Continuum.  Edited by Jonathan A. Peters, Mildred P.  Mortimer, and Russell V. Linneman.  Washington, D. C.: Three Continents Press, 1989.  83-100.

BOOK REVIEWS

  • Anoesis. Vienney Carpentier. 2014.
  • La faim des temps. Vienney Carpentier. 2013.
  • The Balderdash Sessions. Vienney Carpentier. 2012.
  • Sifting Through Time. Vienney Carpentier. 2011.
  • “Delight in the Poetry” (review of) I & I. George Elliott Clarke. Goose Lane Editions. #242 (Winter 2010). 103-105
  • Une tempête dans un vers d’eau. Vienney Carpentier. 2010.
  • Nu comme un vers. Vienney Carpentier. 2009.
  • Where Race Does Not Matter: The New Spirit of Modernity.by Cecil Foster. Toronto: Penguin Books, 2005. 211 pp. ISBN 0-14-301769-1. Wadabagei 11:3 (2009). 142-146.
  • “A Memorable Sojourn” The Book of Negroes. Lawrence Hill. Harper-Collins, 2007. (book review).  The Fiddlehead 233. 116-118.
  • Matter and Metaphor”. Review of George Elliot Clarke,Odysseys Home: Mapping African-Canadian Literature. University of Toronto Press, 2002, 491pp. University of Toronto Quarterly 73:1 (Winter 2003/04). 162-164
  • Review of George Elliot Clarke,Odysseys Home: Mapping African-Canadian Literature. University of Toronto Press, 2002, 491pp. CLA Journal XLVIII :3 (2004). 374-38
  • Observing  the Canadian-Caribbean Self » Review of Robert Sandiford. Sand for Snow: A Caribbean-Canadian Chronicle. Montreal: DC Books, 2003. 188pp. Non-fiction. In Montreal Community Contact. May 20, 2004. 9-10
  • “A Different Angle.”Review of Paula Aird. What Goes Around. Victoria, BC: Trafford. 2004. 255 pp. Fiction. In Montreal Community Contact. June 17, 2004
  • « Less Known Faces of Jamaica.” Review of Bernadette Gabay Dyer. Waltzes I Have Forgotten.Toronto: Women’s Press. 2005. 218 pp. Fiction
  • Review of A Hubert Harrison Reader. Ed by Jeffrey B.  Perry. Wesleyan UP. 2001. In Wadabagei 6: 1 (Winter/Spring 2003). 199-209.
  • Review of Austin Clarke.The Polished Hoe. Toronto: Thomas Allen. 2002. 462 pp.  The Caribbean Writer vol 17 (2003) pp. 248-250.
  • “Unpleasant Truths:  Austin Clarke’s The Polished Hoe » (novel), Toronto, Thomas Allen, 2002, Community Contact,  p. 18
  • Reviews of Loving This Man by Althea Prince & Dry Bone Memories by Cecil Foster.  The Caribbean Writer 16 (2003).
  • Review of Loving This Man by Althea Prince. Community Contact.  June 2002.
  • Review of  Dry Bone Memories by Cecil Foster. Community Contact , April 2002.
  • Review of Whose Song and Other Stories by Thomas Glave. The Montreal Gazette. 27 January 2001.
  • Review of Being Black by Althea Prince. Community Contact. August 21 2001.
  • Review of Commonwealth   and American Nobel Laureates in Literature:  Essays in Criticism.  Alan McLeod, Ed.  New Delhi: Sterling Publishers, 1998; in ARIEL  30: 3 (July 1999). 203-207.
  • Review of l’Humour et la culture américaine by Daniel Royot (Paris, Presses universitaires de France {Perspectives anglo-saxonnes}, 1996). Etudes Litteraires 29:3-4 (1997). 181-186.
  • A Review of Bessie Head:  Thunder behind Her Ears—Her Life and Writing. By Gillian Stead Eilersen (Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 1996). ARIEL 28 (3)  (July 1997).  192-94.
  • “Books in Review: Borrowed Beauty by Maxine Tynes (Pottersfield Press, 1987).  Poetry.  Harriet’s Daughter by Marlene Nourbese Philip   (Women’s Press, 1988). Novel.  Sans Souci and Other Stories by Dionne Brand  (Williams-Wallace, Intl., 1989).  Short fiction.”  In Caribe 4 (1) (April 1990.  27-31.
  • “Getting below the Debris:  A Review of Marlene Nourbese Philip’s Looking for Livingstone:  An Odyssey of Silence”  (Toronto: Mercury Press, 1991), Fiction. Obsidian II:  Black Literature in Review   6  (3) (Winter 1992). 112-116.
  • Review of Aishe Eshe’s Blood at the Root  (novella).  Barstow, California:  Esoterica Press, 1990.  In Kola 4 (2)  (Winter 1991).  31-32.
  • Review of Marie-Joseph Angélique: Incendiaire by Marcel Cabay (Editions Héritages, 1983).   Afro-Can   (April 1987).
  • Introduction to A Common Tongue: Interviews with Cecil Abrahams, John Agard,John Hearne, and Wole Soyinka.   Montreal:  Afo, 1987.  10-11.
  • “‘Stickfight Ritual’:  A Critical Review of Earl Lovelace’s The Wine of Astonishment.”  American Book Review   9 (6)  (Jan-Feb. 1988).  9 & 11.
  • “A Commentary on the Poetry of Dionne Brand.”   Kola  I (1)  (spring 1987). 51-61.

 

SELECTED PAPERS DELIVERED AT SCHOLARLY CONFERENCES

  • “Cecil Foster’s Toronto.” College Language Association Convention. Memphis, TN. April 2002.
  • “Frederick Ward’s Riverlisp within the Context of the African American Oral Tradition.” College Language Association Convention. Francis Xavier University. New Orleans. April 2001.
  • “Folklore as Ideology in Claude McKay’s Banana Bottom “.  Universidad autonoma de Santo Domingo.  May 2000.
  • “Langston Hughes’ Publishing Woes with Alfred A. Knopf.” College Language Association Convention.  Morgan State University, Baltimore.  April 2000.
  • “Motherlessness as Metaphor in Leon Forrest’s The Bloodworth Orphans. CLA Convention. Florida A & M University (Tallahassee), April 1998.
  • “The Caribbean Churches’ Response to the Same-Gender Sex Debate.”  Conference on Caribbean Religions. York University (Toronto). November 1998.
  • “Guitar as Tragic Revolutionary: A Reading of Toni Morrison’ s Song of Solomon” CLA Conference. Atlanta, (Spelman College), April 1997.
  • “Aspects of Leon Forrest’s Fictional Representation of the Inherited Trauma of Slavery in The Bloodworth Orphans .“ Colloque: “La représentation de l’identité culturelle dans le roman nord-américain depuis 1960: Canada, États-Unis, Mexique. Riksuniversiteit  Gronigen (Holland). 15-17 May 1995.
  • African-American Writers and the Literary Marketplace: Langston Hughes and and the Behemoth of US Publishing.” University of Cape Coast (Ghana), 25 January 1995.
  • “Some Aspects of Blues Use in George Eliot Clarke’s Whylah Falls CACLALS at the Learneds, Calgary, June 1994.
  • “The African-American Writer and the Literary Marketplace:  The Case of Arna Bontemps.” College Language Association. Durham, NC, April 1994.
  • “Patronage and the Writing of Langston Hughes’ Not Without Laughter:  A Paradoxical Case.”  MLA, Toronto, 1993; and University of Texas, Austin, March 1994.
  • “Claude McKay’s Banana Bottom as a Response to Early Twentieth Century Colonial Discourse.”  E A C L A L S Triennial Conference.  Graz (Austria). 18-22 May 1993.
  • “A Rejoinder to Prospero: Language as Metaphor of Colonial Horror in the Poetry of Marlene Nourbese Philip.”  Fifty-third Annual Convention of the College Language Association.  Bethune-Cookman College, April l-3, 1993.
  • “African-American Novelists and the Literary Marketplace:  The Case of Zora Neale Hurston.”   Fifty-Second Annual Convention of the College Language Association.   Knoxville:  University of Tennessee, April 1992.
  • “Ibo Women in the Fiction of Chinua Achebe and Buchi Emecheta.”  Canadian Association for Commonwealth Literature and Language Studies. Learned Societies Conference, Queen’s University, May 1991.
  • “Post-Colonial Reality in Peter Abrahams’s A Wreath for Udomo and Chinua Achebe’s Anthills of the Savannah.”  Canadian Association for African Studies Conference.  York University, May 1991.
  • “Form and Ideology in Claude McKay’s Banana Bottom. ”  Canadian Association for Commonwealth Literature and Language Studies. Learned Societies Conference, University of Victoria, 1990.
  • “De l’oral à l’écrit: Anancy personnage folklorique dans les nouvelles de Andrew Salkey.”  Symposium on Caribbean and Brazilian Literatures.  Sponsored by GRELCA (Groupe de recherche  en littératures  et cultures antillaises).   Université Laval, April 1990.
  • “Claude McKay’s Home to Harlem and the Literary Marketplace.”   Claude McKay, Harlem Renaissance and Commonwealth Literature Conference.  University of Mysore (India), January 1990.
  • “The International Outlook in Bessie Head’s When Rain Clouds Gather.”  Association of Commonwealth Language and Literature Studies Triennial Conference.  Canterbury (UK), August 1989.
  • “Some Narrative Strategies in the Short Fiction of Bessie Head.”  Canadian Association for Commonwealth Literature and Language Studies.  Learned Societies Conference. Université Laval, May 1989.
  • “Alice Walker’s Grange Copeland as a Trickster Figure.”  Forty-Ninth Annual Convention of the College Language Association.  Kentucky State University  (Frankfort), April 1989.
  • “Coming to Terms with the Concept and the Application of Houston A. Baker’s ‘Anthropology of Art.'”   Symposium: Theorists of Africa, the Americas, and the Caribbean.  University of Toronto.  February 1989.
  • “L’Effet tragique dans  La  Tragèdie du  roi Christophe et Une  Saison au Congo. d’Aimé Césaire.”   Congrès mondial d études francophones.  Montréal, April 1988.
  • “‘Progress’  and ‘Community’  in the Novels of Earl Lovelace.”  African Literature Association Twelfth Annual Conference.  Cornell University, April 1987.
  • “The Folk Tradition and the Fiction of Langston Hughes.”  African literature Association Eleventh Annual Conference.  Michigan State University, April 1986.
  • “Opposing Viewpoints:  Richard Wright’s and Aimé Césaire’s Perceptions of Africa.”   African Literature Association Ninth Annual Conference.  Baltimore, 1984.

SELECTED MISCELLANEOUS LECTURES AND WORKSHOPS

  • “Nous sommes le nègres d’Amérique.” Table ronde. Salon International du livre de Montréal, novembre 2013. Reprise: Libraire port de tête, Montréal, février 2014.
  • “A Thorny Relationship.” (L’épineuse relation entre l’écrivain et le lecteur ») Université Laval’s Centre de recherche interuniversitaire sur la littérature et la culture québécoises. Morrin Centre, Quebec City. April 16, 2013.
  • In-studio Guest  for a two-hour talk show on the subject of literacy.  We First FM radio station. St Vincent and the Grenadines. December 4, 2012
  • «What Themes Does the Immigrant Caribbean Writer Explore?”  St Vincent and the Grenadines, NBC Radio St Vincent and the Grenadines, December 8, 2012.
  • “Turning Reality into Story,” (one-day workshop). Canadian Authors’ Association.  31 May 2009.
  • “Putting Reality into Fiction” ( 8-week  workshop on writing fiction) Quebec Writers’ Federation. 1 October – 3 December 2008.
  • “Who are the Garifuna?” Lecture Montreal St. Vincent and Grenadines Association. February 2008.
  • “Immigration and My Writing.”  Literary and Historical Society. Quebec, February 2007.
  • “To Whom Is the Writer Responsible?” Multiple Lenses: Voices from the Diaspora Located in Canada (Sponsored by the James Robinson Johnston Chair in Black Canadian Studies. Dalhousie University. 27 October 2005.
  • “Independence in a Non-Independent ‘Nation’. Keynote Speaker. Independence Banquet and Ball. Ottawa St. Vincent and Grenadines Association. November 2004.
  • Form & Content in Spirits in the Dark (my first novel). Discussion with students studying the novel. Bates College (Lewiston, MA), 26 March 2004.
  • “Le visage déformé de l’histoire africaine. CEGEP François-Xavier-Garneau (Quebec City). 26 February 2004.
  • “Identity in Post-independent St. Vincent & the Grenadines. Keynote Speaker. Independence Banquet & Ball of the Montreal St. Vincent & Grenadines Association. Montreal, 31 October 2004.
  • “Challenging ‘Illegitimate’ Sexuality in the Caribbean.” York University (Toronto), November, 2002.
  • “The Writer and Society.” (Lecture)  University of the West Indies (St. Vincent & the Grenadines). June 20, 2001.
  • “Reality in Fiction.” (Workshop)  University of the West Indies (St. Vincent & the Grenadines). June 9, 2001.
  • “Necessary Counter Narratives.”  Africana Congress 2000. McGill University. February 5, 2000.
  • “The Black Community and Homophobia” Soul Perspectives, CKUT (Montreal) Host Adrian Harewood, Interview, commentary and response to questions phoned in by listeners  (two-hour program), 8 December 1998.
  • Interview: “Homophobia in the Black Community (interviewed by Natasha Vincent and incorporated in an article in Community Contact  (December 1998).
  • “Moeurs, homosexualité et fiction aux Caraïbes anglophones.”  (“Mores, Homosexuality and Fiction”) Eglise communautaire du village” (Lecture given as part of Black History Month.)  28 February 1998.
  • “The Fiction Writing Process”: workshop with 70 students involving the reading of a short story and a discussion of its evolution as well as other issues bearing on the process of creative writing. Sponsored by the Writers Development Trust of Canada. Quebec High School, 30 January 1998.
  • “What’s Definable in the African-Canadian Aesthetic?” Lecture, part of a workshop  “Reflections on the ‘African-Canadian Aesthetic”.  CELAFI– CELEBRATING AFRICAN IDENTITY: ENTERING THE MILLENIUM.  Ryerson University.  CAN: BAI, 12 July 1997.
  • “What and Where Is Kwame Appiah’s House?” Lecture, part of a workshop exploring aspects of African reality.  VUES D’AFRIQUE. Montreal, 24 April 1997.
  • “From Reality to Fiction and back again to Reality: The Fiction Writing Process” Lecture-discussion-lecture with three groups of students studying How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow? . CEGEP Champlain–St-Lawrence. Quebec City, 29 April 1997.
  • “English-Caribbean Fiction Writers’ Response to Marginalized Caribbean Reality.  Bates College (Lewiston, Maine). Lecture & discussion with two classes students studying Spirits in the Dark 21 March 1996.
  • “African Reality and the African Writer in the Diaspora.”  Lecture to the St. Vincent and Grenadines Association of Montreal in the context of Black History Month. February 6, 1994.
  • “Self-definition”  (keynote address).  Sixth Annual Business Week of the Montreal Association of Black Business Persons and Professionals.  Montreal, April 27, 1991.
  • “Choosing Our Values, Discovering Our Past”  (lecture and discussion).  Shadd Academy, Montreal, April 9, 1990.
  • “Ending the Marginalization of Black History”  (lecture and discussion).  Sponsored by the Quebec Human Rights Commission to close Black History Month. February 28, 1990.   This lecture was given a second time at the Commission’s premises in Montreal on April 2, 1990.
  • “African Authors and Liberation:  Ngugi Wa Thiong’o and Alex LaGuma”  (a fourteen-minute discussion with Chengiah Ragaven).  Televised on the Montreal Cable Television Network, May 8, 1988.
  • “The School Curriculum and the Black Child”  (lecture).  Sponsored by Concordia Students Union, November 15, 1987.
  • “Finding Solutions for Unmotivated Black Elementary and High School Students”  (workshop).  Sponsored by the Black Community Council of Quebec, le Ministère d’immigration et des communautès culturelles and Department of Multicultural Affairs.  Montreal, Ocotber 24, 1987.
  • “The Reflection of Apartheid in Black South African Writing”  (lecture) Sponsored by the Emancipation 150 Committee.  Montreal, March 29, 1987.
  • “Black Literature and Theatre” (one-hour discussion shared with Don Jordan, with host Brent Brambury).  Broadcast live on CBC FM.  Montreal, March 19, 1986.
  • “Community Building”  (Keynote Address).  Annual Banquet of the Montreal Caribbean Social Organization.  Montreal. November 12, 1985.

SELECTED READINGS & INTERVIEWS

  • Reading. Maison du Québec à St-Malo, St-Malo, 9 juin 2014.
  • Discussions on Writing. ÉtonnantsVoyageurs Festival du livre et du Film, St-Malo, 7-8-9  June 2014.
  • Interviewed by Claudia Del Balso. Laval Life. 2014.
  • Interview by  Robert Sandiford.  Kola 24:2  Fall 2013.
  • Reading & Discussion. Roxboro Public Library. Montreal. 23 February 2011.
  • Interviewed by Tien Providence. CKLN Radio, Toronto.21 February 2011.
  • Reading. Gladstone Hotel. Toronto. 24 November 2010.
  • Reading & Discussion. Ottawa International Festival of Authors. 21 October 2010.
  • Reading: Yellow Door.  Montreal. August 2010.
  • Reading. Kama Reading Series. World Literacy of Canada. Toronto. April 21, 2010.
  • Lawn Chair Soiree
  • Reading. Visual Arts Centre. Montreal, May 2009
  • Reading. Canadian Authors’ Association (Montreal). Westmount Public Library, Sept 8, 2008.
  • “Cherchez l’Arcadie: Interview avec l’écrivain H. Nigel Thomas. » (online) Felicia Mihali. Terra Nova 45, mai 15, 2008.
  • CJSR: READING AND INTERVIEW with Malcolm Azania about Return to Arcadia. Edmonton,  April 23, 2008.
  • “Indelible Identity: Confronting the Truths in Secrets” Interviewed by Terri-Lynne Waldron. XTRA. Toronto: April 10, 2008.
  • Reading. Blue Metropolis, Montreal. April 2008.
  • Paragraphe Bookstore. Montreal. Reading and Discussion. April 2, 2008.
  • Interview by Quentin Mills-Fern. “A Life Sooner Forgotten.” Uptown. Winnipeg.
  • Reading. The Economy Shoebox. Halifax, March 13, 2008. Broadcast on CKDU 88.1 Halifax on April 9, 2008.
  • Interview. Afro News (online), March 2008
  • Interview. CJSW Radio. Calgary, February 21, 2008.
  • Reading and Discussion. Chapters. Vancouver, February 16, 2008.
  • Interview.”BT.” City TV. Edmonton, 14 February 2008
  • Reading and Discussion  Return to Arcadia, Edmonton Public Library, February 14, 2008.
  • Reading and Discussion,. Return to Arcadia. McNally Robinson Bookstore. Saskatoon. February 13, 2008.
  • Interview CFCR Radio. Saskatoon, 13 Feb 2008.
  • Reading and Discussion. Caribbean Council of Manitoba, February 11, 2008.
  • Reading and Discussion. McNally Robinson Bookstore. Winnipeg, February 11, 2008.
  • Interview. “BT” City TV. Winnipeg, February 11, 2008.
  • Interview. Radio. Afro News. Vancouver, February 9, 2008.
  • Reading and Discussion. A Different Booklist (bookstore). Toronto, February 8, 2008.
  • Interview with Dave Bronstetter., February 3, 2008.
  • Interview (television) with Peter Anthony Holder. “Soul Call”. CJNT, Montreal,
  • Interview with Peter Anthony Holder. CJAD, Montreal. January 3, 2008
  • Blue Metropolis. Writers on Writing. Part of  panel with Sherri Simon, Noah Richler and Joel Yanofsky, April 2007
  • Interview (online) “The African Diaspora and Self Hate” english.ohmynews.com/articleview/article_view.asp?no=354788&rel_no=1 April 8, 2007.
  • Discussion H Nigel Thomas, Wayde Compton, Karina Vernon, and David Chariandy) Issues and Challenges Facing Black Canadian writers today.  Vancouver. Spartacus Books, February 20, 2007
  • Discussion. “Why We Write.” New College University of Toronto. February 7, 2007
  • Bates College (Lewiston, MA). 25 March 2004.Canadian Caribbean Literary Exposition. Toronto, June 21& 22 2003.
  • CEGEP Champlain St. Lawrence(Writers in CEGEPs) Quebec City February 21, 2003
  • La Parole (featured performer). (How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow? & Moving through Darkness), November 29, 2002
  • Central Technical High School (Toronto). Class of students studying Black literature (Behind the Face of Winter & Moving through Darkness) (November 21, 2002)
  • University of Toronto. (How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow?) (Prof. George Elliot Clarke’s course on African Canadian Literature), November 14, 2002
  • Paragraphe Bookstore (Behind the Face of Winter) May 2, 2002
  • McNally Robinson Bookstore (Behind the Face of Winter) July 30, 2002.
  • Librarie Zone (Behind the Face of Winter) April 4, 2002
  • Toronto Public Library  (Behind the Face of Winter) January 21, 2002.
  • Harbourfront Reading Series (Behind the Face of Winter). November 27, 2001.
  • Association for Canadian College and University Teachers of English & The Writers’ Union of Canada (Social Sciences & Humanities Congress) Spirits in the Dark & Moving through Darkness. May 25, 2001.
  • African and Caribbean Students Black History Month Gala 2000.  Reading. Moving through Darkness.  February 25, 2000
  • Write pour écrire (Union des écrivains du Québec & Quebec Writers’s Federation) Reading from Sprits in the Dark and How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow?  (Trois-Riviéres) November 13, 1999.
  • CKUT Radio. Reading. Moving through Darkness.  February 21, 2000
  • Caribbean Pride. (Sponsored by the Department of Africana Studies– New York University, Schomburg Center for Studies in Black Culture and Poets & Writers, Inc.) Reading from Spirits in the Dark and How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow?   August 2, 1999.
  • CBC Radio (Montréal and Québec Community Network) Saturday Spotlight. Reading and discussion: How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow.   Host Shelley Pomerance).  11 Oct. 97
  • Harbourfront Centre/ Celafi (Toronto). (Spirits in the Dark and How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow?).   12 July 1997
  • CEGEP Champlain–St-Lawrence (lecture-discussion-reading). How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow?). Quebec City, 29 April 1997
  • CEGEP Champlain-Saint-Lawrence. (How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow). 16 April 1996. 
  • Bates College (Lewiston, Maine). (How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow?)    21 March 1996
  • CBC Radio (Montréal Québec Community Network) Saturday Spotlight.  Reading & interview:(How Loud Can the Village Cock Crow?)   Host Shelley Pomerance, 9 Feb 1996 (Rebroadcast in summer 1996) Montréal.
  • “ Share the Spirit” Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Artists Performance. Reading of several poems. .  22 August 1995.
  •  Université du Québec à Montréal (Canadian Association for the Study of Commonwealth Languages & Literatures) Learned Societies Conference–1995).  Spirits in the Dark.  29 May 1995.
  • Trent University (Canadian Association of African Studies Conference). Reading (Spirits in the Dark). May 1995.
  • Centreprise Bookstore (London, UK). Reading & discussion: Spirits in the Dark, 27 February 1995..
  • Sceptre Bookshop (London, UK). Reading & discussion. Spirits in the Dark, 28 February 1995.
  • Oxford University -New College. Reading & discussion. Spirits in the Dark 20 February 1995
  • BBC Radio (Oxford) Black Voice. Reading & Interview (Spirits in the Dark) Host:  Yana Groves. Broadcast 26 February 1995.
  • York University (Toronto). Reading & discussion. 8 December 1994.
  • CBC Radio (Montréal and Québec Community Network). Saturday Spotlight  (Host Shelley Pomerance.  Reading & discussion on the occasion of the nomination of Spirits in the Dark for the Hugh MacClennan Prize for Fiction. 5 November 1994 (Rebroadcast in the summer of 1995).
  • Université de Montréal. Reading & discussion. Spirits in the Dark. 6  Oct. 1994.
  • University of Texas  (Austin). Reading & discussion. Spirits in the Dark.  1 March 19 94.
  • CBC Radio (Quebec Community Network). Breakaway.  Host Jacky Czernin.  Reading & interview. Spirits in the Dark. 9 December 1993.
  • CBC Radio (Montréal) Home Run. Reading & Interview. Spirits in the Dark) Host: Dave Bronstedder.  16 November 1993
  • Eden Mills Writers’ Festival (Guelph, Ontario). Spirits in the Dark. 12 September 1993.
  • Karl-Franzens-University (Graz, Autriche). EACLALS Conference. Reading & discussion. Spirits in the Dark. 19 May 1993.

 

            


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