Tue | Feb 20, 2018

UWI Vice-Chancellor salutes Derek Walcott

Published:Wednesday | March 22, 2017 | 12:00 AM
Derek Walcott

Vice-Chancellor of the University of the West Indies (UWI) Professor Sir Hilary Beckles has extended condolences on behalf of the UWI community to the family and loved ones of renowned author Sir Derek Walcott, who died last Friday.

Walcott, an alumnus of the UWI, Mona campus, graduated in 1953 and was awarded an honorary DLitt in 1973. His literary works are known and lauded internationally and he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature

in 1992.

"In addition to his personal works, Sir Derek's legacy is also his contributions to the field of literature regionally and internationally," read a statement from the UWI.

He founded the Trinidad Theatre Workshop, located in Trinidad and Tobago's capital, taught writing

and literature at Boston University in the US,

and a scholarship was established in his name for students enrolled in the Theatre Arts programme at

the UWI St Augustine campus.

Sharing his sentiments on Walcott's passing, Beckles said:

"One of the finest intellects of the 20th century, a literary phenomenon from the Lesser Antilles, Sir Derek Walcott has gone to meet his maker. A globally respected alumnus of the University of the West Indies, one of its two Nobel laureates from the island of St Lucia, Sir Derek's scholarly genius was first recognised while a student in the Faculty of Arts at the Mona campus in Jamaica. His first collection of poems was locally published while still a student. As a student he also engaged in playwriting, which he described as the most complicated literary form."

The UWI said it was saddened and mourned with Sir Derek's family and loved ones, including his two daughters: Professor Elizabeth Walcott-Hackshaw, a current member of staff at the UWI, St Augustine, and Anna Walcott-Hardy, who is a former employee of the campus.