These two books also made a contribution to the ethnic debate
October 28, 2003
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First of all congratulations are in order to Dr Gibson on her much debated book, The Cycle of Racial Oppression in Guyana. I read it several times. There are some good things in it but in the main I am disappointed with her method, her conclusions and her tone. However, what is interesting is how media debate is constructed and expanded.
In 2000 an edited book entitled Race and Ethnicity in Guyana: Introductory Readings was launched at the Hotel Tower. The recorded attendance was 85 persons. Over 300 copies of this book were sold in Guyana in the following two years. To the best of my knowledge there was no discussion of it in the Stabroek News. There was a review in the Guyana Review and the Guyana Chronicle. This book is extremely important because it deals with the issue of resolving the racial/ethnic conflicts in Guyana. The contributors include people from the main religions, ethnic/racial groups, political persuasions. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Dr David Hinds and Othello Guyau for their reviews and Guyana Journal for displaying it on the book section of its website. In many ways this book warned of the rise in the ethnic-based violence we saw recently and offered suggestions on how the racial/ethnic divide could be bridged.
Last year another important book on resolving the protracted communal conflicts in Guyana was launched. It was written by Dr Judaman Seecoo-mar and launched at the National Library, Georgetown. The recorded attendance exceeded 100. At least 100 copies of this book have been sold in Guyana so far. Again debate around this very important contribution has been scanty.
Since Dr Gibson’s book has stirred our letter writers and scholars, I hope some good soul[s] would find the time and will to engage these and other contributions in the field. Copies are in the National and University of Guyana Libraries. They are on sale at the following bookshops: Ovid Holder’s in Water Street, Michael Forde’s in Robb Street and the University of Guyana’s on the Turkeyen Campus. The two books mentioned above blamed no race but sought to point to ways of organising our lives in peace and justice.
Citizen Kampta Karran
We recall publishing previous letters from Mr Karran on his book and we had published an editorial on Dr Seecoomar’s book. There has been an ongoing debate on the ethnic issue in our letter columns for the last fifteen years.