This panel will address the broad scope of Indo-Caribbean women’s lived experiences in the social, political, and cultural realms from the time of indentureship, through times of resistance in the 1960s to present day. Each panelist will respond to the exhibition, Reclaimed: Indo-Caribbean HerStories. Ramabai Espinet will reflect on the jahaji legacies of “Coolie Belles” in Caribbean nation states and their expanding diasporas. Nalini Mohabir will trace the trajectory of the role of Indo-Caribbean women’s role in politics shaped by labour movements in the sugar industry. Joy Mahabir will discuss the literal and symbolic meanings of Indo-Caribbean women’s jewelry.
Ramabai Espinet, Caribbean Studies, University of Toronto.
Short bio: Dr. Ramabai Espinet is a writer of poetry, prose, and essays, and a retired academic, continuing her teaching at the University of Toronto in the Caribbean Studies Program. Her publications include The Swinging Bridge, a novel, and Nuclear Seasons, poetry. She is the editor of CreationFire, an anthology of Caribbean women’s poetry in several languages. Coming Home is a documentary film (Leda Serene) on her work.
Nalini Mohabir, Concordia University
Short bio: Dr. Nalini Mohabir is an associate professor in the department of Geography, Planning, and Environment at Concordia University. She teaches in the fields of feminist and postcolonial migration geographies, and her research is primarily in the field of Caribbean studies, with a focus on indentureship.
Joy Mahabir : Suffolk County Community College of the State University of New York
Short Bio: Dr. Joy Mahabir is a Professor in the department of English and Humanities. Her published work include essays on Caribbean literature, visual arts, calypso and chutney music, and Indo-Caribbean jewelry.
Moderator: Alissa Trotz, Women in Gender Studies, University of Toronto
Short Bio: Dr. Alissa Trotz is a Professor of Caribbean Studies at New College and the Director of Women and Gender Studies at the University of Toronto. She is also Affiliate Faculty at the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill, Barbados.
Panel Presenting Partners: Women in Gender Studies at the University of Toronto
Caribbean Studies, at the University of Toronto
Presented by Gardiner Museum