Merle Collins

1999

Merle Collins was the eleventh author in the Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series at Marygrove College.  She visited campus on April 23, 1999.

Born on the island of Grenada in 1948, Collins earned degrees from the University of West Indies in Jamaica, Georgetown University and the London School of Economics.   From the latter institution she received her doctorate.

Her work focuses on women as the preservers of the social community.  Her publications include two novels, Angel (1987) and The Colour of Forgetting (1995); four collections of poetry, including Because the Dawn Breaks (1985), Rotten Pomerack (1992), and Lady in a Boat (1999); and a collection of short stories, Rain Darling (1990).

At her visit to Marygrove, Collins emphasized the importance of tone and voice.   At her reading she read from her poems "The Lesson," "Up and Down the Deck," and "Calaloo," about the American invasion of Grenada. She spoke about the influences of the Carribbean, Africa, and the French and English languages in her work.

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