Home Arts-Entertainment Showcase 'Seasoning for the Mortar:' V.I. Authors Add Flavor to Anthology

'Seasoning for the Mortar:' V.I. Authors Add Flavor to Anthology


Feb. 6, 2005 – The publishers of acclaimed annual The Caribbean Writer have cooked up a literary delight with the publication of "Seasoning for the Mortar: Virgin Islanders Writing in The Caribbean Writer Volumes 1-15."
In keeping with the mission of The Caribbean Writer, which is committed to providing a forum for and encouraging good writing, "Seasoning for the Mortar" gathers some of the best work of Virgin Islanders which were published in previous volumes of The Caribbean Writer, an annual anthology published by the University of the Virgin Islands.
The text is a collection of poetry, fiction, drama and personal essays written in local dialect and standard English. The Virgin Islands serve as the setting for many of the pieces and the themes are reflective of the territory and region. Featured writers include Althea Romeo-Mark, David and Phillis Gershator, Sharmane Myvette, Winston Nugent and Isidor Paiewonsky. Anthology editor Marvin Williams, along with past and present UVI professors and employees such as Arnold Highfield, Patricia Harkins-Pierre, Jeanne O'Day, Simon B. Jones-Hendrickson, Gene Emanuel and Carmen Rogers-Green also contribute literary pieces to the book.
Following the format of the parent text, the book is divided by genre, and individual pieces are clustered around their authors. Part I focuses on the poetry of 29 poets who engage in numerous themes including identity, the legacy of colonialism, and women's rise in a male-dominated society. Part II consists of 14 short stories, many of which question issues surrounding coming of age and violence in male-female relationships. Part III offers a play that takes a comic view of the conflicts that arise when challenged male chauvinism comes under the attack of an assertive, womanist vision. The final section, Part IV, is made up of five personal essays, each investigating how demographic and cultural shifts impact tradition and provoke reassessment of name and place.
Collectively, the works in this anthology provide what its title suggests — ingredients for a V.I. literary gumbo from which unseasoned and seasoned writers, critics and audiences can draw nourishment toward an end of healthy growth and development, a release said.
"Seasoning for the Mortar" will prove itself useful in high school and university classrooms throughout the region.
The anthology is available at Education Central, Memories of St. Croix, Undercover Books, Dockside Bookshop, and both UVI bookstores. Copies can also be ordered directly from The Caribbean Writer's Office by calling 692-4152 or e-mailing [email protected] or [email protected].


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