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Award-winning Writer, Olive Senior, Launches First Novel, Dancing Lessons

Prize-winning Jamaican author, Olive Senior, will launch her first novel, Dancing Lessons, on Sunday, December 11, 2011 at 11:00 am at the Neville Hall Lecture Theatre (N1), Faculty of Humanities and Education, UWI, Mona Campus. Dancing Lessons has been described as “sad, satirical, hilarious, and ultimately redemptive. A novel infused with the cadences and colour of Jamaica yet connecting with anyone anywhere who engages with notions of family, love, loss, friendship, and belonging.” This new novel is further acknowledgment of Ms. Senior’s prodigious talent.
Since publishing her first poetry collection, Talking of Trees in 1985, Senior has published three other well-received poetry collections. Gardening in the Tropics won the F.J. Bressani Literary Prize, while over the roofs of the world (2005) was shortlisted for Canada's Governor-General's Literary Award and Cuba's Casa de las Americas Prize and Shell (2007) was shortlisted for the Pat Lowther Award.
Her critically acclaimed first collection of stories, Summer Lightning, won the inaugural Commonwealth Writers’ Prize in 1987. This collection was followed by the highly regarded Arrival of the Snake-Woman (1986) and Discerner of Hearts (1995). Scores of Caribbean students have had the pleasure of reading her stories and poems since Summer Lightning and Discerner of Hearts have been on the Caribbean Examinations Council literature syllabi and Gardening in the Tropics is currently one of the set texts for CAPE Literatures in English. In addition to her literary output, Senior has also produced non-fiction works on Caribbean culture that include the A-Z of Jamaican Heritage (1984), Working Miracles: Women's Lives in the English-Speaking Caribbean (1991) and The Encyclopedia of Jamaican Heritage (2003).
Olive Senior, recipient of the Gold and Silver Musgrave Medals, will read from her new book, Dancing Lessons, which promises to be a literary feast. Ms. Senior will also be available to sign copies at the end of the launch. The launch is organized by the Department of Literatures in English and the West Indian Association for Commonwealth Literature and Language Studies (WIACLALS).
Olive Senior will also conduct two creative writing workshops for the Department of Literatures in English at the UWI, Mona Campus: a poetry workshop on Saturday, December 17, 2011 and one on fiction on Saturday, January 21, 2012.
The public is invited. For further details interested persons may contact the Department of Literatures in English at 927-2217.

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