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Brian Meeks promoted to Professor

The University of the West Indies is pleased to announce the promotion of Dr. Brian Meeks, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Government, Mona Campus to the post of Professor in the Department with effect from February 5, 2003.

Professor Meeks is a graduate of the UWI, St. Augustine Campus and holds the Bachelor of Science degree in Social Sciences with Upper Second Class Honours. He completed the Master of Science degree in Government at the UWI, Mona Campus and went on to obtain the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree also from the UWI, Mona Campus. He has also pursued Post Doctoral studies at Cambridge University on a Commonwealth Academic Staff Fellowship.

Professor Meeks joined the staff of the University of the West Indies in 1983 as Assistant Lecturer in the Department of Government at the Mona Campus.  He was promoted to Lecturer in 1986 and Senior Lecturer in 1995. He was Head of the Department of Government from 1997 - 2002. Over the period, he has also been Visiting Professor in African New World Studies at Florida International University; Visiting Scholar at the Center of Latin American Studies at Stanford University and Visiting Professor at James Madison College at Michigan State University.

Professor Meeks’ academic work has centred on the theory of revolution, comparative Central American and Caribbean politics; Caribbean thinkers and political thought as well as hegemony, democracy and the state in theory and practice. The impact of his work extends through several disciplines – political science, history, political economy, sociology, Africana studies, Caribbean studies and Latin American studies. Over the years, he has developed an international reputation in these fields, evidenced by the numerous invitations that he receives to present his work at institutions in North America and the United Kingdom.

Professor Meeks’ work has addressed nearly every development in political methodology in the twentieth century.  He is regarded as a scholar who has tried to come to terms with the problems of the Caribbean in the post-cold war world. His co-edited reader: “New Caribbean Thought” (2001), and his most recent book entitled “Narratives of Resistance” (2000) have been hailed as significant and valuable contributions to the social scientific literature on the Caribbean, and to the study of insurrectionary political events in the Caribbean at the end of the twentieth century.  In these books, Professor Meeks examines the collapse of radical West Indian politics and its failure to transform Caribbean societies. 

His first book “Caribbean Revolutions and Revolutionary Theory: An Assessment of Cuba, Nicaragua and Grenada” (1993), adapted formal theories of revolutionary change in an explanation of the recent history of the three countries.  “Radical Caribbean: From Black Power to Abu Bakr”, published in 1996, gives a careful, critical analysis of recent postmodernist thought with a firm grounding in the history and political economy of the Caribbean. Brian Meeks has also published some nineteen articles in local, regional and international journals, spanning a range of concerns.

He was instrumental in the development of the Centre for Caribbean Thought, which he chairs, and is currently conducting research for an Encyclopaedia of Caribbean Thought.   Professor Meeks’ first novel “Paint the Town Red” set in Jamaica in the 1970’s is to be published in May, 2003.

Professor Meeks has also made a significant contribution to teaching and administration. He is a Member of the American Political Science Association; the Caribbean Studies Association; the Latin American Studies Association and the Institute of Caribbean Studies at the UWI. He is also a Member of the Editorial Board of the University of the West Indies Press and a Contributing Editor, WADABAGE Journal, Caribbean Research Center, Medgar Evers, College, City University of New York.  

At the University level, he served as Member of the Vice Chancellor Search Committee (1999-2000), was one of the Vice Chancellor’s Nominees on the reform of governance at the University (1994-1995) and has been the Principal’s Nominee to the University Senate Since 1998.

In the area of Public Service, he served as a Member of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Observer Group for the Zimbabwe Parliamentary Elections (2000), is Chairman of The Michael Manley Foundation, and provides regular commentary on Jamaican and Caribbean issues for local, regional and international media.

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