Ms Marva Phillips tribute to Mr Rex Nettleford
The Cultural Division in collaboration with the National Cultural Council continued with the planned activities for the 2010 emancipation celebrations with a ‘Tribute to Professor Rex Nettleford on Thursday July 29th at the Fort Young Hotel. This lecture was geared at recognizing and honoring the late Rex Nettleford for his memorable contributions to culture and education. Chief Cultural Officer Mr Raymond Lawrence said that the Caribbean was indeed shocked by the passing of this great professor.
Mr Lawrence said, “His death was such a sad loss to the region and it felt like a gap needed to be filled especially in the areas of education and culture. He was, at one time, the head of the Hugh Lawson Shearer Trade Institution. He was an outstanding intellectual and creative genius and his work had a great impact on shaping the cultural landscape of Dominica."
"He was a powerful educator, writer, lecturer, choreographer and dancer and he inspired and influenced the lives of many Caribbean nationals,” said the Chief Cultural Officer.
The lecture was presented by Ms Marva Phillips, head of the Hugh Lawson Shearer Trade Union Institute of Jamaica. She said that she was honored to share her experience about Mr Nettleford, a man who was not just her colleague, but also her friend.
“Not only was he stylish in fashion but he was also stylish in his outstanding and continuous intellectual contribution in his creative manipulation of the english language, in his role as a cultural icon, in his ideological exposition of race, class and gender and corresponding issues of liberation and dominance as he integrated Jamaica and the regions social history,” said Ms Marva Phillips.
Ms Phillips described Mr Nettleford as a man who embraced black nationalism and black power who carried his race and color proudly in the 1960’s.
“It was in our interaction with colleagues and friends that I came to understand his passion for the liberation of black Jamaican and Caribbean people. While some may think that emancipation started and ended in the 1830 or 1834 in certain countries, for Nettleford emancipation was an ongoing dynamic process which involved liberation from historical and contemporary bondage brought on by white supremacy," said Ms Phillips.