Skip to content

Dismantling the Caribbean Cliché : Creative Writing Workshop

August 5, 2014

“Caribbeanness is a system full of noise and opacity, a nonlinear and unpredictable system. In short a chaotic system beyond the total reach of any specific kind of knowledge or interpretation of the world.”

– Antonio Benitez Rojos, Cuban scholar


Rosabelle Illes, Groundation Grenada’s writer-in-residence from Aruba residing in Netherlands

After a revitalizing yoga session on the morning of Saturday  16th August 2014, which will focus on cultivating creativity, it’s time to stretch our minds and to engage in creative writing from 10:15 am to 4:15 pm at the historic Priory building on Church Street (next to ‘Hindsay’ School). Forgetting is Not an Option Phase N°1 is Groundation’s largest project to date and boosts a rich program of events, including Dismantling  the Caribbean Cliché, a creative writing workshop hosted by our visiting Writer-in-Residence, Rosabelle Illes (Aruba). Pre-registration online is required and open to everyone, 16 and over.

The Caribbean has become a synonym of paradise and that in turn has become a cliché. Naturally, the history of each island shaped its current state. Yet the fact that our past took shape under clear blue skies and bright sunshine while surrounded by white sand and caressed by turquoise sea does not make slavery, colonialism, revolution and identity crises any more or less pretty. Even the events and movements tied to Caribbean islands, when mentioned as empty terms to simply summarize the history, also pertain to tired overused narratives.

This creative writing workshop aims to reach the core of the Grenadian native as individuals. By expressing emotions, experiences and observations through poetry and short-stories, participants will be guided to tear down longstanding views that have lost their meaning and create fresh pieces. It is – after all – our duty to provide the next generation with more progressed thoughts so that they can dismantle what we create today. Don’t miss your chance pre-register online!

1375114_668636626489646_1122785473_nRosabelle Illes is an Aruban writer and artist currently residing in the Netherlands. She is the author of two collections of poetry “Beyond Insanity” (2005) and “Spiel di mi Alma” (Mirror of my Soul, 2010) and the creator of an art calendar entitled “Wholism” (2012). Her short story “Stars for sale: a buck each” (2013), about a woman who becomes mentally ill after the baristas at her favorite coffee shop repeatedly misspell her name on her coffee cup, is published in the 11th issue of Gone Lawn Journal. Her experimental piece “The invisible short-story” (2013) features in theNewerYork Press and her poem “True Friendship” (2014) can be found in the 13th volume of My Favorite Bullet. Her most recent work “Species” is published in the Spring 2014 anthology by Crack the Spine Press. Presently, Rosabelle is working on a children’s book in collaboration with Curaçaoan singer-songwriter Levi Silvanie.

Next to producing works of art, Rosabelle also dedicates her time to teaching the craft. In the summers of 2013 and 2014, Rosabelle led a two-week workshop on creative writing as part of the Pancake Gallery’s global educational arts program “Art Rules Aruba.” She has also taught creative writing and held lectures at Webster University Leiden, the University of Aruba and The Pedagogy Institute of Aruba.She holds a BA in Psychology (Hons) with a minor in English from Webster University and an MSc. in Social and Organizational Psychology from Leiden University, where she is currently a doctoral candidate in psychology.

Learn more about her at

Click to Pre-register for her creative writing workshop!



Groundation Grenada is a social action collective which focuses on the use of creative media to assess the needs of our communities, raise consciousness and act to create positive radical growth. Our mission is to provide active safe spaces to incubate new modes of resistance, building from the local to affect regional and international solidarity and change. We pursue our mission online, through our website and social media, and also through live events and special projects in collaboration with local, regional and international artists, activists and institutions. Groundation Grenada’s website supports both local and diasporic voices, acting as an interface to connect people who are hungry for innovative change.

Speak Your Mind

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: