Aug 21, 2023
In this episode we talk about a forthcoming graphic novel adaptation of C.L.R. James’ play Toussaint Louverture: The Story of the Only Successful Slave Revolt in History.
The text of this graphic novel is a play by C.L.R. James that opened in London in 1936 with Paul Robeson in the title role. For the first time, black actors appeared on the British stage in a work by a black playwright.
In this conversation we talk to Sakina Karimjee and Nic Watts who adapted James’ play into graphic novel form and illustrated it. We talk about how C.L.R. James dramatized the Haitian Revolution and its various contradictions and characters and how they sought to tell this story through a graphic novel, using James’ script.
Along the way we talk about many aspects of the revolution, about the story’s protagonist Toussaint Louverture, about the relentless imperialist pursuit of Haiti, which was ongoing throughout the revolutionary period and continues into the present day. And we also discuss why the Haitian revolution is so suppressed in popular culture and popular representations of history, despite being one of the single most important events in world history.
You can join the Black Alliance for Peace Newsletter, which will keep you updated on issues impacting Haiti and many other issues of Black Internationalism. There are many other ways you can get involved in their work too that you can find on their website.
And to support our work at patreon.com/millennialsarekillingcapitalism. This is our fifth episode of the month and unfortunately so far this month we have more non-renewals on pledges than we have new patrons. So if you’ve been thinking about supporting the show or increasing your support of the show, it’d be hugely appreciated at this time.