Nicholas Laughlin

I'm a writer and editor with a particular interest in Caribbean literature and art. I was born in Port of Spain, Trinidad, and am still here. My book of poems, “The Strange Years of My Life”, was published in 2015.

I'm the editor of Caribbean Beat, a bimonthly magazine; co-director of the contemporary art space Alice Yard; and programme director for the Bocas Lit Fest.

I've also edited a collection of essays by C.L.R. James, “Letters from London” (2003), a revised and expanded edition of V.S. Naipaul's early family correspondence, “Letters Between a Father and Son” (2009), and an anthology of new writing from Commonwealth small island countries, “So Many Islands” (2018).

Find out more about me at my home page, nicholaslaughlin.net.

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Latest posts by Nicholas Laughlin

Cuba: thinking about the film festival

  21 December 2011

Havana Times asks whether the Havana Film Festival has strayed from its original ideals — “Much has happened since its inception in 1978, since which time its revolutionary and emancipatory ideals have faded considerably” — and wonders if the festival could once more “encourage revolutionary and popular cinema (in the...

Cuba: succession fears

  20 December 2011

The death of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il and the succession of his son prompts Generation Y to think about the Cuban government's own succession plans. “The dauphin over there is named Kim Jong-un; perhaps soon they will communicate to us that over here ours will be Alejandro Castro Espin.”

Cuba: owing obsolete rubles

  20 December 2011

Cuba has a longstanding debt to Russia of 20 million Soviet rubles — a currency that no longer exists. Machetera asks: “how and when do you decide what a vanished currency is really worth?”

Jamaica: when poets join academia

  20 December 2011

UK-based Jamaican writer Kei Miller muses on the consequences of poets joining the academic world. “Poetry is certainly not known for its plain-spoken-ness and in fact is accused, just as much as the academy, for its obscurity and its pretensions. And this is as it should be!”

Barbados: tribute to Desmond Bourne

  20 December 2011

The Bajan Reporter posts a tribute to his late father, the journalist and adman Desmond Bourne. “It was not that my father never stood on convention, he acknowledged where he felt it was expected – such as Diplomats and & Ceremony – but for the most part he ignored it….”

Barbados: prime minister's quandary

  20 December 2011

Barbados Underground offers an analysis of the “headache” created for Prime Minister Freundel Stuart by a now notorious leaked letter allegedly demonstrating his party's doubts about the PM's leadership. “Whatever he does must positively feed public perception that he is in charge of his men. The question is: will it...

Jamaica: vote or not?

  19 December 2011

Idle Yout Speeks asks if he should bother to vote in Jamaica's upcoming general election. “I blame my reluctance … on a deep rooted fear that stemmed from the more violent days of Jamaica's more violent election campaigns,” he writes. “I see some subtle differences in the parties but ultimately...

Cuba: Prix Carbet for Padura

  19 December 2011

Cuban writer Leonardo Padura has won the 2011 Prix Carbet de la Caraïbe, reports Repeating Islands. The prestigious prize for works of Caribbean literature in French, founded by the late writer Edouard Glissant, was awarded to the French translation of Padura's novel El hombre que amaba a los perros (The...

Barbados: remembering “Hitch”

  19 December 2011

Barbados-based B.C. Pires posts his reflections on the death of writer Christopher Hitchens: “for all his flaws … worth a few hundred pastors and priests to me, perhaps a few thousand.”

Trinidad and Tobago: making zines

  19 December 2011

Trinidadian artist Rodell Warner posts images from a zine workshop for young artists which he organised in Johannesburg, South Africa, and explains that the experience made him think “of all the people at home who are concerned with actively sharing and making the place richer and more fertile.”

Barbados: debating “the letter”

  19 December 2011

Barbados Underground and Barbados Free Press comment on a controversial letter allegedly written to Prime Minister Freundel Stuart by members of his party, expressing a lack of confidence in his leadership, and subsequently leaked to the media.

Puerto Rico: ideas are just the start

  7 November 2011

“It's great to give everyone the opportunity to voice their concerns, but ideas are the easy part…. We can do anything, as long as we are willing to accept the sacrifices and consequences that result from our conviction.” Dondequiera reflects on the public forums hosted by the Puerto Rican civil...

Trinidad and Tobago: animated voices

  7 November 2011

ban-d-wagonist posts a video clip in which Trinidadian artist James Hackett interviews participants in the just-concluded Anime Caribe animation festival in Port of Spain.

Caribbean: the meaning of identity

  7 November 2011

Creative Commess hosts a blog symposium “about Caribbean people, about West Indian people, about our contemporary experiences … ranging through race & identity to culture, mental health to constructs of beauty and more,” with contributions from seven Caribbean bloggers.

Trinidad and Tobago: State of Emergency, Day 4

  25 August 2011

With a national state of emergency — declared by the government to combat rising crime — now in its fourth day, bloggers and other social media users in Trinidad and Tobago express doubts about the effects of the emergency measures and respond with humour to the inconvenience of a nighttime curfew.

Trinidad and Tobago: Debating a State of Emergency

  22 August 2011

On Sunday 21 August, the government of Trinidad and Tobago declared a national state of emergency to deal with the violent crime that has afflicted the Caribbean nation in recent years. This legal move — which affects citizens' civil rights — triggered debate and concern among Trinidadians online.

Jamaica: political satire thrives

  4 March 2011

“Political satire is alive and well in Jamaica,” writes Active Voice, pointing to the supposed Twitter account of the controversial gang leader and “president” of the Tivoli Gardens community Christopher “Dudus” Coke: @dudusfromtivoli.

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