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Radio Haiti Archive: Franketienne



In this 1977 interview (in Kreyol) from the Radio Haiti Archive, Jean Dominique interviews legendary Haitian playwright and poet Franketienne. Eccentric and abstract, this beloved Haitian author rejects realism and embraces disorder. He integrates chaos into a style he believes is fitting for a country with a long, tumultuous history birthed in a slave revolt more than two centuries ago and scarred by a plethora of natural and manmade disasters. Birthed from this ideology, Franketienne spearheaded the literary movement of Spiralism. In 1975, Franketienne wrote was considered by many to be the first modern novel entirely in Haitian Creole and he authored the play Pelin Tet which challenged political oppression. One of Haiti's best known intellectuals and artists, Franketienne is one of the foremost leaders in creative and political thought in the Caribbean.

Jean Léopold Dominique was a Haitian journalist who spoke out against successive dictatorships. Despite fleeing the country twice when his life was under threat, he continued to return to his native Haiti, firmly believing in the cause of the Haitian plight. He was assassinated on April 3, 2000 at the radio station, a crime for which no one has ever been prosecuted. Surviving through tides of political strife during the Duvalier regime and outright attacks on the station, including exile, torture, and execution of reporters and radio directors, Radio Haiti lasted as a voice of Haitian democracy until its closure in 2003.

This program is made available on Clocktower Radio in partnership with The Radio Haiti Archive, part of the Human Rights Archive at the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Duke University. To find out more about this historic archive, visit RadioHaitiLives.com.
 

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