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New Kweyol Dictionary Launched

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Contact: Primus Hutchinson

Friday, October 25, 2002 - Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Dr. Didicus Jules sees the launching of a new Kweyol dictionary by the Ministry of Education and the Summer Institute of Linguistics International (SIL) as helping to refashion the future.

Dr. Jules who addressed the launching ceremony at the Folk Research Centre (FRC) on Saturday 19th October 2002, paid particular homage to Dr. David Frank of the Summer Institute of Linguistic International, who during the early 1980’s was intricately involved in the developing of the orthography of the Kweyol language together with members of the FRC. Dr. Jules focused his attention on the historical developments regarding the FRC/SIL relationship, whilst collaborating on the Kweyol language project.

“ I want to recall that when David first came to St. Lucia, at the point when he came with the Crosby’s and he sat with us at the Folk Research Centre, we were not sober minded, young committed Christians, we were also radical, fire breathing black nationalists (laughter, applause) and we put David and the Crosby’s through their own particular baptism of fire to ask them why would a group of white people want to come and help us, and which one of you here represent the CIA” .Jules said.

Dr. Jules complemented Dr. David Frank and his team for working tirelessly through the night doing the simple bounding things he said, that all the fire breathing radicals would never want to touch, but which at the end of the day lays the foundation for a solid future.

Founding member of the Folk Research Centre, Monsignor Patrick “Paba” Anthony reiterated the significance of appreciating the beauty of the idiom that is “indigenously and natively ours” carrying its own wealth and power. According to Paba, if one does not appreciate oneself as a person, it is impossible to appreciate the beauty of our language. Monsignor Anthony, indicated that this is the main driving force which keeps them doing research into St. Lucian culture, because the culture, he said, is the expression of our humanity, equal with the humanity of anybody, anywhere in the world.

The first kweyol dictionary was published by the late Jones E. Mondesir in 1992.


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