To mark Caribbean Literature Day 2021, JWIL kicks off another Twitter residency. Between July 12-19, 2021, Miguel Antony Vasquez will be tweeting about the archives of the Caribbean Writers Summer Institute at the University of Miami.
Operating from 1991-1996, The Caribbean Writers Summer Institute was envisioned as an initiative that would bring Caribbean writers in dialogue with each other and with the United States. The overwhelming success of this six-week residential program (based at U Miami) sparked the addition of workshops in fiction, drama, and poetry, literature seminars, and ultimately the expansion of the Caribbean Studies undergraduate and graduate programs.
Driven by the labor of community leaders, faculty, and administrators, the CWSI sought to “generate awareness of the Anglophone (African, Asian, and Creole) Caribbean’s literary culture and, in the process, increase the profile of the Anglophone Caribbean within the department, the college, the institution, and the greater Miami region of South Florida” (Saunders & Pouchet Paquet 186).
The collected CWSI archives consisting of readings from prominent scholars and intimate knowledge of the Institute’s growth are a testament to the profound care surrounding this program and the impact it continues to have on the University of Miami’s Caribbean Studies community writ large.
Miguel Vasquez is a fourth year English PhD student at the University of Miami with a dual focus in African American Literary Studies and Caribbean Literary Studies. His research focuses on the Harlem Renaissance period, exploring U.S. Black identity formation and its sociopolitical relationship to the U.S. invasion of Haiti (1915). Miguel also currently serves as Assistant Editor of Anthurium: A Caribbean Studies Journal.