Monthly Archives: July 2015

What is Carnival to me (Renwick Herry)


Carnival is Pipey, Petet, Mals Jim, Lena and Tan Tan stick fighting in Tivoli junction.


Playing jab jab at 7 -years old, and wineing to the rhythm of the drum.


Wearing headpiece of house, donkey, boat and  plane made with bamboo and coloured tissue paper, dressed in velvet and satin costumes.


Timber , Otway, Jocan and Dadday, play- acting the role of doctor, midwife, and dispenser with tababy in box collecting a penny to sound and get you well.


The old carnivals of my childhood were portraits of facts and also fantasy.



Renwick Herry.


Renwick Herry is a master drummer and  leader of Toronto’s Drum Theatre Group.

carnival grenada

What is Carnival to me?


Carnival is the proverbial “feast for the eyes“.  But do the sated eyes tell the whole truth?


John Berger offers some help:

The relation between what we see and what  we know is never settled”


Berger argues that when we see,  we are not just looking -we are reading the language of images”


Ways of Seeing, Berger




What is Carnival to Me

Nothing has happened until it’s been described”.

-Virginia Woolf


Carnival is the excremental attack on the sanctimony of Authority; it answers to a psychic need for elevation, heaven,ecstasy, feathers, wings. Carnival is a flight to Imagination.

Carnival teaches that dance is a text more eloquent than words, and that only Carnival achieves the impossible.

Carnival is promise, and promise succeeds in ways that shames fulfillment.

Carnival is the sweetest anarchy.

Caldwell Taylor

What is Carnival to Me

Jab Jab carnival band © Grenadian Connection

Jab Jab carnival band
© Grenadian Connection

Carnival is the highest form of cultural manifestation. It is the stethoscope that sounds the robustness of a society. It is the validation of the equivalence of decadence and morality. It endorses the highest freedom of expressions.

Clevil James

Father from Victoria, St. Mark

Mother from Hermitage, St. Patrick

Nation-building and Culture


“In this nationalist struggle I am confident that the man of culture has an important role, and that the political

leader can only succeed by enlisting culture in the struggle and placing it in the vanguard of the nationalist movement”. 

Dr. Eric Williams, addressing the Second Congress of Negro Writers, April 1959


Caribbean Carnival in Costa Brava, Spain

This piece opens our 2015 Carnival Studies. So now it is time to tell the stories of the Grenadian Carnival: our  Grenadian show opens on August 1, 2015.

And remember this: “Nothing has happened until it’s  described “

-Virginia Woolf


September time is Carnival time in Begur, the small town on Spain’s Costa Brava.

The Costa Brava Carnival is a Caribbean Carnival; its roots in Cuba.


Carnival aka Carnestoltes: Residents flock to the streets in fancy dress for the carnival to dance and watch a huge procession of floats whilst massive paellas are cooked on the beach.

Spain’s Caribbean Carnival goes by the  name of Fira d’Indians, the Indians’ Fair.   

Note: Costa Brava is located in Catalonia; it is a fine time to read Orwell’s Homage to Catalonia.


Publication date 25 April 1938