(photo © Thomas C. Spear Montréal, 14 avril 2009. — & Thomas too is in Haiti & I haven’t heard if he is alright)
News just reached me of the death in the Haitian earthquake of George Anglade and his wife Mireille. The couple had returned to Haiti earlier this year for what was supposed to be a longer research stay. Anglade liked to define himself as a “man in three pieces:” geographer (his academic field of study & teaching), political man (a militant for redress in Haiti, he spent time in jail under the Duvalier dictatorship and was exiled several times, returned briefly to join the administration of Aristide as cabinet member) and writer. He is both a theoretician and practitioner of Lodyans, the Haitian narrative genre that goes all the way back to Justin Lhérisson and that Jacques-Stephen Alexis calls the specifically Haitian literary genre by excellence. Here is how Hugues St. Fort speaks of Anglade’s book Haitian Laughter.
With Rire haïtien / Haitian Laughter, Georges Anglade has taken a giant step in literary and linguistic innovation in the realm of Haitian literature. To my knowledge, this is the first time that a Haitian printer (in this case Féquière Vilsaint), publishing in the United States, has produced a Haitian text in a French-English bilingual edition on American soil. Such an undertaking is quite different from English translations of Haitian texts in French, such as the novels of Jacques Stephen Alexis (Compère Général Soleil / General Sun, My Brother, University of Virginia Press, translated by professor Carrol Coates, 1999; or L’espace d’un cillement / In the Flicker of an Eyelid, University of Virginia Press, translated by Coates and the Haitian-American novelist Edwidge Danticat, 2002, for example). Here, Anglade is setting his sights not only at the immense United States market made up of an impressive population of second-generation Haitians — born in the United States or having arrived in America at a very young age, and who are ill-informed about the culture of their immigrant parents – but also at the American public at large, whose perceptions of Haiti and its culture are particularly disastrous.
You can read the full review here. And, for the francophones (& lodyansphiles) here is a bibliography of Georges Anglade:
- Les Blancs de Mémoire. Montréal: Boréal, 1999.
- Leurs jupons dépassent. Montréal: CIDIHCA (Bibliothèque haïtienne), 2000.
- Ce pays qui m’habite. Outremont: Lanctôt, 2002.
- Et si Haiti declarait la guerre aux USA ? Montréal: Éditions Écosociété, 2004.
- Rire haïtien / Haitian Laughter, recueil bilingue de 90 lodyans de Georges Anglade. Trad. Anne Pease McConnell. Coconut Creek (Floride): Educa Vision, 2006.
- L’espace haïtien. Montréal: Presses de l’Université du Québec, 1974.
- Mon pays d’Haïti. Montréal: Presses de l’Université du Québec, 1977.
- Espace et liberté en Haïti. Montréal: Centre de recherches Caraïbes, Université de Montréal, 1982, 144p.
- Atlas critique d’Haïti. Montréal: Centre de recherches Caraïbes, Université de Montréal, 1982, 80 pages, 18 cartes.
- Cartes sur table, en trois volumes. Port-au-Prince: Deschamps, 1990.
- Chronique d’une espérance; L’Hebdo de Georges Anglade (2007-2008). Port-au-Prince: L’Imprimeur II, 2008.
On Georges Anglade:
- “Les paris risqués de Georges Anglade, Entrevue.” Le Nouvelliste (8-10 juin 2001): 1, 8.
- Georges Anglade, “L’année des chiens, lodyans.” Le Nouvelliste (8-10 juin 2001): 31-32.
- Peterson, Michel. “Georges Anglade, Blancs de mémoire” (compte-rendu). Nuit Blanche 79 (été 2000).
- Peterson, Michel. “Et si Haiti declarait la guerre aux USA?” (compte-rendu). Nuit Blanche 96 (automne 2004).
More on Georges Anglade (who also succeeded in starting the PEN club in Haiti) is available here, on the île-en-île site where you’ll find 1. a full Anglade bibliography, 2. audio recordings of him reading 2 lodyans 3. the original diaspora map (teh version I reproduced was more or less unreadable).