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Black Mountain Institute


Distinguished poet, playwright, Nobel Laureate, and visual artist Derek Walcott reads and discusses selections of his work. Walcott spent the month of April 2007 at UNLV as the Elias Ghanem Chair in creative writing and taught a graduate poetry seminar through the department of English.

Derek Walcott was born in Saint Lucia, the West Indies, in 1930 and began writing poetry at the age of 18. He graduated from the University of the West Indies, and, in 1957, was awarded a fellowship by the Rockefeller Foundation to study the American theater. In 1959, he founded the Trinidad Theater Workshop, and his plays have been produced throughout the United States. He founded the Boston Playwrights' Theatre shortly after he accepted a professorship at Boston University, which presents original works by local, national, and international playwrights. He has also organized an exchange program between his Boston Playwrights' Theatre and the Trinidad Theatre Workshop.

His play Dream on Monkey Mountain won the Obie Award for distinguished foreign play of 1971. He also received the 1992 Nobel Prize in Literature, a MacArthur Foundation "genius" award, a Royal Society of Literature Award, and, in 1988, the Queen's Medal for Poetry. He is an honorary member of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. Walcott teaches creative writing at Boston University every fall and lives the rest of the year in St. Lucia.


Oral interpretation of poetry; Poetry – History and criticism; Walcott; Derek


Arts and Humanities | Literature in English, Anglophone outside British Isles and North America | Race, Ethnicity and Post-Colonial Studies




Introduction: Carol C. Harter, Black Mountain Institute

Discussant: Wole Soyinka, Black Mountain Institute

Moyer Student Union, UNLV

Audio/Video File size: 410 megabytes

Additional audio file size: 42 megabytes

walcott-19april07.mp3 (43010 kB)
MP3 recording of event