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MPHIL/PHD- Cultural Studies @ Institute of Caribbean Studies; University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica


I am a trained teacher of History at both the secondary and tertiary levels of education. Culture and heritage has always been my passion hence my current pursuance of an MPHIL in Cultural Studies at the University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica. I am also the CEO of Expert Educational and Professional Consultants; a humanities-based educational company and the sitting President of the History Teachers' Association of Jamaica: a collaborative group of practitioners in the discipline across all sectors. The journey of my life is summed up in my mantra: "Ignorance Enslaves; The Knowledge of God Liberates"

Geographical location : Jamaica

Research Area and Interest : Protest, Performance, Resistance, Cultural Practice, heritage preservation

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Session 3: Culture and Performance


Resistance as Culture: ‘Blockroading’ as a Colonial Cultural Conundrum in the Jamaican Society.

This research investigates the phenomenon called ‘blockroading’ in Jamaica, but widely referred to as protests or demonstrations the world over. The aim of the research is to investigate the main causes of the occurrence, the profile of the people who are normally driven to use this method of resistance as well as to locate the phenomenon squarely as a cultural feature of resistance of the Jamaican society. The research proves that there are characteristics of blockroading that are distinctive to Jamaican society, thereby making the act different from other protests and demonstrations. Blockroading is primarily a call for action from the powers that be, but it has moved beyond that to become an enactment, a performance of the common people. An over-arching post-colonial lens is visible in this research that is grounded in historical and archival studies, but also undertakes observation and an extensive survey. The research does not attempt to make specific comparisons of protests across the world; rather it uses examples of protests in other parts of the world as an explanation of the race, gender and colonial politics that marginalizes and excludes the ‘others’ usually involved in this activity, even within a post-colonial context. The research also explores the parallels in the socio-political contexts before and after the independence period in Jamaica, with a view to understanding the continuance of the practice. The methodology is grounded in the spaces of the urban and rural poor of Jamaica and proves that the phenomenon called ‘blockroading’ in Jamaican society has become an entrenched construct of resistance as a result of our historical experiences. Such is its frequency and structure that it has become a distinct, identifiable element of culture, much like other acknowledged cultural practices in Jamaica.