by Curlan Campbell, NOW Grenada
- Digital exhibition marks 40th Anniversary of the Grenada Revolution at Norton Hall
- Exhibition of videos and memorabilia highlight developments across various sectors
- Panel discussion “The Grenada Revolution and its impact on Grenadian society” starts today at 5 pm
There was nostalgia and a solemn mood for many people visiting the digital exhibition marking the 40th Anniversary of the Grenada Revolution at Norton Hall, Church Street, St George’s.
The exhibition of videos and memorabilia highlight the developments in agriculture, agro-industries, education, tourism, infrastructure, and other areas during its 4 ½ years and is considered the widest cross-section of materials ever displayed since the collapse of the revolution in 1983. Individuals shared personal stories of the revolution.
Organised by the Grenada Revolution Celebrations Committee (GRCC), the exhibition features several large-screens showing footage and photos highlighting the positives aspects of the revolution, and activities before, during and after the revolution’s demise.
George Michael Kirton was among those moved by the digital exhibition. He was heavily involved in the agro-industries and specifically tasked with responsibility for the resuscitation and stabilising of the sugar industry during that time. He said the Grenadian revolution was the finest period in the country’s history. “The Revolution was very significant in terms of effecting change in that in getting us to understand that we are capable of doing it and that we can do it in a way in which the quality would be internationally acceptable — and that went for our nectar and other products we produce. And also building confidence that the farmers who supplied us with fruits and vegetables can be relied upon to produce according to the proper scientific procedures of agriculture.”
Dr Raymond Nurse said he was among the very first students during the revolution to receive an overseas scholarship to study in East Germany at the Technische Universität Bergakademie Freiberg, where he did his Master of Science in Geology from 1983 to 1988. He later received his PhD in Economic Geology and Geochemistry from the same university from 1988 to 1992.
Dr Nurse’s perspective on one of the major achievements of the revolution: “One of the practical tasks during the revolution was the whole question of education in the rural areas. This is why we developed the Centre for Popular Education, and I experienced that, and that made me more motivated at that point in time to become a teacher in the villages.”
The GRCC has also called on members of the public to come forward with their memorabilia from the revolutionary period so that it can be properly photographed and documented for the committee’s archives.
Co-chairperson of GRCC Attorney-at-Law Ruggles Ferguson said the ultimate goal is to establish a museum dedicated to the Grenada Revolution. “The Grenada Revolution was historic, it was the first of its kind …certainly in the English-speaking Caribbean and you have many tourists who come here and ask about the museum. It is like a given, you can’t have a revolution of this type and not have a museum where people can go and learn things.”
The digital exhibition was among many activities planned by the GRCC which started off on 9 March with Champs in Concert at the Grenada Trade Centre, a major concert which featured Grenadian-born Brother Valentino. This was then followed by 4th Annual March 13th Lecture delivered on 12 March by former St Lucian Prime Minister Dr Kenny Anthony, who spoke on the topic “The Grenada Revolution – Beyond Grenada.”
Other activities included a Youth Parliament, book launch, and public education sessions, including a TAMCC-hosted discussion on the revolution led by Dr Wendy Grenade, Senior Lecturer in Political Science at the University of the West Indies (Cave Hill Campus).
The exhibition at Norton Hall concludes today Friday, 15 March with a panel discussion “The Grenada Revolution and its impact on Grenadian society.” Panellists include Dr Stephen Fletcher, Dr Wayne Sandiford, Chris de Riggs and Val Gordon. The panel discussion starts at 5 pm and is open to the public.