The L’Ouverture Blog

The term capital means a stock of wealth that produces a flow of income. Your human capital refers to investments you have made in yourself through which you expect to gain economic returns. The term human capital refers to both tangible and intangible attributes and investments, such as the combination of your genetic inheritance, your education and experience, and your attitudes about life and business. It includes such subjective characteristics as your personality traits, your creativity and your self-efficacy, abstract endowments like your intelligence and conscientiousness, in addition to your personal attributes like health. Human capital is the KSAOs (knowledge,
INTRODUCTION Civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. and Ralph Abernathy (center, back) kneel with a group in prayer prior to going to jail in Selma, Alabama. The group was arrested on February 1st after attempting to gain the right to vote. Following the prayer, the group peacefully marched to jail.   The fallacy that race is an aspect of one’s identity and that racism either validates or invalidates one’s identity has created a high level of resentment and anxiety among people. I speak of race and racism as fallacies because an analysis of race reveals that the concept subsumes
  Writing a good book is hard work, but knowledge makes the process easier. Here are some multi-dimensional actions you can integrate into your writing process that will take you closer to your goal of becoming an award-winning author. Don’t wait for the right time to write your book – just do it Write using your own voice Give yourself permission to write in your mother tongue Write the books you’ve always wanted to read Write down your purpose for writing your book Know your audience Research and create an audience profile Try to freewrite every day Engage in freespeaking

Because we were not in our country, we could not use our own languages, and so when we spoke our voices came out bruised. When we talked, our tongues thrashed madly in our mouths, staggered like drunken men. Because we were not using our languages we said things we did not mean; what we really wanted to say remained folded inside. trapped. In America we did not always have the words. It was only when were were by ourselves that we spoke in our real voices. When we were alone we summoned the horses of our languages and mounted their
  That a writer must find and develop their own voice may seem obvious to a seasoned storyteller. But to many it’s not obvious at all, especially those writing non-fiction works like business books or academic and other intellectual works. I carefully mentor such writers and encourage them to give themselves permission to allow their own voices to emerge in their work. One of the important purposes for which many people write non-fiction is to brand themselves as authorities in their field. Finding your own voice and writing your book in that voice is one of the most crucial aspects
Civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. and Ralph Abernathy (center, back) kneel with a group in prayer prior to going to jail in Selma, Alabama. The group was arrested on February 1st after attempting to gain the right to vote. Following the prayer, the group peacefully marched to jail. “The year before, Newark, New Jersey, had been occupied by nearly lily-white units of the National Guard, sent there to quell a four-day rebellion in which 26 Blacks were killed. The Guardsmen behaved like an Army of White Vengeance, joining the racist cops in savaging Black people and shooting up businesses
Achebe’s Things Fall Apart is a classic of the Nigerian literary canon. It’s a story set in a period in which the tragic colonialization of Africa as just beginning, a period when traditional African customs were forced to give way before the brutal invasion of  strange customs from a land called Britain. Read a review of the book and its politics: A Look Back at Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart for its 60th Anniversary    
It seems people are unable to understand that animals are a lot like us. They experience pain when they are injured or abused. They love each other and their habitats. They speak to each other. They have spiritual connections with the cosmos. They are souls, as we are. So why do some unevolved individuals continue to treat them as if they are valueless? Read about the lions rescued from illegal circuses at the DailyNativeNews: 33 Circus Lions Finally Return Home To Africa After A Lifetime Of Misery – DailyNativeNews    
Every day, Google collects an astonishing volume of information about everyone who uses their devices. Read this article and follow the links to find out how much information Goggle has collected about you. Are you ready? This is all the data Facebook and Google have on you | Dylan Curran | Opinion | The Guardian    
This story celebrates legendary photographer, Kwame Brathwaite, as he returns to capture the images of Black beauty. Read the full story:  An artist’s ornate natural hairstyles, through the eyes of a legendary photographer of black beauty    
In 1835, Britain borrowed 20 million pounds (300 billion pounds in today’s currency) from bankers Nathan Mayer Rothschild and Moses Montefiore to compensate owners of slave plantations in British colonies for the loss of slaves when the Slavery Abolition Act was passed 1833. The loan was so large, it was not until 2015 that the British government finally completed the payment, which was made using the money of British taxpayers. This means modern-day British citizens have been paying money into the hands of those responsible for the greatest crime against humanity, while not one cent of that money has gone
Black people who live in communities in which Black institutions such as Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) are located become very successful. This is because the knowledge they acquire from the HBCUs empowers them to startup businesses and employ Black people in the communities. Read more about this via HBCUs Improve The Quality Of Life For Blacks Living In Their Cities | News One    
by Maggie Brito, PhD When I attend to the Ding! at the time it Dings! I become absorbed in the layered, complex type of creative idea it tends to be. Sometimes when I’m working an idea would pop into my awareness and kind of hover, as if it’s waiting for me to pick it like fruit from a tree. Ideas like these are fully formed, complete and finely detailed, and I’m usually excited by their unexpected appearance. Thing is, there are loads of other ideas in my mind already, and to attend to this new one means I have to
One aspect of the assault on the African family and on Black families has been the removal or lessening of the role of the father in the household. The underachievement of boys in educational systems throughout the African diaspora, as well as the fact that the majority of perpetrators and victims of homicides, violent crimes and assaults in the diaspora are young men, are important issues that have been engaging the attention of people from all walks of life, for these are symptoms of crises occurring in Black communities and nation states. Barbadian author, Dr. Akhentoolove Corbin, is concerned about
Sheila Minor was not, as some suggested, “support staff.” She was a biological research technician who went on to a 35-year-long scientific career Source: How Smithsonian Helped Solve the Twitter Mystery of the Unknown Woman Scientist | At the Smithsonian | Smithsonian    
The release of The Black Panther, the movie, showed the important role of representation in filmmaking to the conscientizing of Black people on the planet. There are numerous other films and TV series which spark similar interest, even if not on such a large scale. The mini-series “Roots” is one of those series. The original series aired in 1977 to critical acclaim, and the remake is no less successful. This article is about the impact of the series on the town of Spotsylvania in Viginia, and the discovery there of the grave of Kunta Kinte.
  Haitian history is defined by turmoil and upheaval, victory and freedom. In 1804, Haitian slaves won what is still regarded as the only successful slave revolution in history, to become the first free black state when the planet was being redefined by Caucasian genocidal geopolitics. These books provide an opening view into the fascinating world of Haitian literature. Source – Penguin Random House: Steeped in Tradition: Best Books to Understand Haiti’s Past and Present
In 2016, the United Nations acknowledged that the United States owes reparations to the descendants of former slaves. So far, there has been no acknowledgement of this in Washington. Source: U.S. owes black people reparations for a history of ‘racial terrorism,’ says U.N. panel – The Washington Post
The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) is a global leader in the reparations discourse. Two Caribbean nationals, lawyer David Commissiong, and historian Professor Pedro Welch, both from Barbados, speak about the importance of keeping the issue of reparations for the descendants of victims of the slave trade within the public consciousness.  
African slaves in North America didn’t know how majestic they were before slavery; they just knew how oppressed they were. Many Black people still don’t remember our great past.   SHARE
During the Spanish Civil War a German anarchist and historian serving with the International Brigade discovered an account of how a Florentine nun led a mission to Hayti, Spain’s first American colony, two decades after its ‘discovery’ by Christopher Columbus. But she also had a secret assignment – to find out if the passage through to Asia depicted on a world map published by the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller actually existed. During her investigations, she meets up with Fray Hugo de Montenegro, a Dominican monk who has been there for several years and has been collecting accounts of Spanish atrocities;
This article examines the impact of gun control in the USA from the point of view of Black owners of guns. Since Caucasian settlers needed to defend themselves against the indigenous people whose land they stole, the ideology of the right to bear arms became enshrined in the United States constitution. Black gun owners have historically used firearms as a defence against the hostile Caucasian dominated nation. But how would gun control affect their ability to protect themselves? Read the full article in A Black Radical Defense of the Second Amendment | Black Agenda Report
We just ‘heard’ through the Twitter grapevine (thank you, Bocas Lit Fest) of the sad news of the passing of Guyanese author Sir Wilson Harris. To echo Bocas Lit Fest, “Harris has been one of the Caribbean’s literary giants for half a century.” In his honor, we share an excerpt from a 2010 interview with […] via Sir Wilson Harris has passed away — Repeating Islands
The image of the black panther is a symbol of Black Power, which bespeaks bravery, excellence and the willingness to use one’s skill to out-manoeuvre a cunning enemy with every intention of winning the fight. The symbol of the black panther enjoys a heritage rooted in authentic Black civilizations which flourished before the colonization of Black populations by the Caucasian paradigm. The Black Panther movie has been described as the best movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), grossing, according to one estimate, $704 million worldwide within the first month of its release, making it the highest grossing film of
  This is an interesting feature about the way one American school frames the educational experience for children. I like the way they recognise how multi-dimensional consciousness is, how holistic is the learning experience, and how complex is the human being.
The language has become insufficient for the expression of my experience. I find no words to articulate the truth of my being, and so my experience cannot be known, even to myself.   Because my experience is deeper than my known concepts allow, the articulation of my experience is taboo.   Sometimes, I feel the language is my enemy that causes me to articulate pain – the language is very good at articulating pain – and even a word like love does not express what I know it to be.   Some words I painfully dig up from my depth
I found this insight about Africans deeply interesting. I, myself, have not yet visited Africa, but I have a good friend who goes there all the time, and he makes the same observations – Africans are generous, good and trusting people. When Africans leave our Motherland and migrate to the Caucasian countries, they succumb to the Caucasian paradigm and the lethal conditions set up specially for them. I think Black people should definitely stop thinking within the Caucasian paradigm and get to know ourselves. We should stop regurgitating the Caucasian narrative about us, and begin to listen to our own
There is a real – but largely concealed – war which is taking place throughout the African continent. It involves the United States, an invigorated Russia a Source: Shadow Armies: The Unseen, But Real US War in Africa
A journal, whether it be a bound book or an electronic file, is an excellent tool, no matter where you happen to be in your life. Journals are indispensable to writers, businesspeople, inventors as well as people tracking various processes, including physical and mental health treatments. Keeping a journal not only trains you to be observant as you record your experiences, it also helps you retain and develop your new ideas. Journaling is an excellent way to articulate your goals and develop them, and if you date your entries, you can review what you’ve learned over time and make significant
I named my company after one of the most charasmatic leaders of the Haitian Revolution of 1791 – Pierre Dominique Toussaint L’Ouverture. The word L’Ouverture roughly translates as “the opening” or “he who opens.” I called my business L’Ouverture because I want to open my clients to possibilities. I want them to be open to the possibilities which inhere in writing, in producing a great book and becoming a knowledge leader. I want them to be open to their brilliance, to be superstars. What kind of writer is a superstar writer? One capable of using the language to make possible
I’m busting out of my limitations, many of which are self-imposed. I think we were all born inside peculiar boxes that were pre-made for us. We were born within a box of social status, or a box of gender, or a box of race, or within a box of a nation or a particular community, and we inherited the limitations of our parents and our communities. And that’s okay, because we do need a framework when we’re growing up, something that orients us to the world around us. But there does come a time when we need to reshape our
I am a pure writer, meaning I don’t do anything but write. Mine is a complex writing space, with overlapping academic, artistic, trade, philosophical and spiritual sensibilities. I write into these sensibilities from an angst-ridden space of anger, frustration, indignation and sorrow. My attempt to reach for joy, forgiveness, happiness, peace keeps me writing.
We all know we should set goals. But how aware are we of the deeper, spiritual significance of setting a goal? You see, creating a goal – and the name says it all – is a creative process. It is the first step of every creative endeavor. Setting a goal is vitally important for the experience of manifestation. Without a goal, a vision of a new thing, and some idea of how you’re going to acquire it, you would get absolutely nowhere. Setting my goal empowers me to fulfil my higher destiny. When I set a goal, my entire being
Photographer, Jeanine Michna-Bales has documented the route of the Underground Railroad,. The images were shot at night to remind viewers that enslaved Africans seeking freedom traveled under cover of darkness. Despite the fact that true freedom remained out of reach, hundreds of Black slaves made the 1,400 mile journey from the cotton plantations of Louisiana in the USA, sometimes as far north as Ontario, Canada. See the photo-essay in Through Darkness to Light | VQR Online
  by Harold Adrian Beckles “..Well is one trip/[chorus] de Caribbean man/on de same ship/[chorus] de Caribbean man/an’ is one race/[chorus, as above]/in de same place …,” These words that mark the distinctive antiphonal dynamics of a highly popular calypso of some years past, as its Trinidadian performer made an appeal for Caribbean peoples to embrace a heightened intercultural Pan-Caribbean awareness that would be founded upon a greater popular agitation for regional re-federation at the political level. The question that emerges here, becomes this one: ‘What is this “one trip .. on de same ship,” when it is taken as
Though the United States of America portrays itself as a model of liberal democracy, Nazi leaders of the Third Reich were of the opinion it was a trailblazer in the creation of legislation designed to maintain racial purity. When framing its own racist legislation, the German looked to America or model. Source: Why the Nazis studied American race laws for inspiration | Aeon Ideas
The purpose of this Declaration is to articulate IBW priorities for Racial Healing and Collaboration for Black Empowerment in terms of our work leading up to State of the Black World Conference IV and as an outgrowth of the proceedings. As such this Declaration marks a continuation of the work outlined at State of the Black World Conference III which was organized around the Theme: State of Emergency in Black America: Time to Heal Black Families and Communities. Source: SOBWC IV – Declaration of Intent and Call to Action
by Pristine Parr I meet people all the time who want to write a book. Either they think they have led a fabulous and exciting life people want to read about or they burn to tell some story their way, giving people an inside look at something most believe they already know but don’t. Before the movie Wolf of Wall Street,  I met a man who claimed to know all the inside dirt about the NYSE and really wanted to write about it. I say claim because the way the movie Wolf of Wall Street showed the open prostitution, excessive
The lyrics of this song were taken from a speech delivered by the Emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Selassie 1 at the United Nations General Assembly on October 4, 1963. Bob Marley’s recorded version of the speech hit the airwaves in 1976. Why are these words as relevant and urgent now, 53 years after they were originally penned?  
Following the election of Donald Trump to the presidency of the USA, an election in which Trump unabashedly utilized racist rhetoric and assumptions, Black people in that country and throughout the world have begun to strategize the means by which we might resist expected anti-Black discrimination.  UCLA Professor, Robin D.G. Kelly, suggests five areas of resistance. Source: After Trump: What the resistance must look like | Pambazuka News
Guyanese activist and historian Walter Rodney was one of the greatest Caribbean intellectuals of the twentieth century. Though he was assassinated for working to conscientize the Black working classes throughout the African diaspora, his legacy continues to live. Source: Dr. Walter Rodney: Revolutionary intellectual, socialist, Pan-Africanist and historian | Pambazuka News
CULTURE is a way people understand and respond to the statements and actions put out by a dominant power seeking to engender allegiance to itself. The term culture is often associated with the arts, and according to most definitions I’ve read, is assumed to refer to a shared system of values. Culture, however, is a concept which goes way beyond artistic expression. For example, the West Indian historian and poet, Kamau Brathwaite, who is Barbadian, conceptualized a definition of culture which he prefaced with a definition of the poet. He said the poet is a craftsprson, oral or literary, ideally both, who deal
For many of us, the term ‘Sub-Saharan Africa’ is an uncomplicated term denoting, simply, those countries south of the Sahara Desert. It’s usually uncritically accepted as a literal geographical space. However, as Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe observes, the term is ideologically loaded to perpetuate an unstable geopolitical hierarchy which treats Afrika as an exploitable resource. The image above, for example, is one of a typical “sub-saharan” African city. Source: What exactly does ‘sub-Sahara Africa’ mean? | Pambazuka News
We must align our dream and vision for our craft with the body of knowledge relevant to the creative-business environment of the new paradigm of publishing. As digital storytellers, we need to see the big picture of the creative/disruptive business environment in which we operate, and the process we must follow to be successful in this environment. We must align our dream and vision for our craft with the body of knowledge relevant to the creative-business environment of the new paradigm of publishing. We need to know far more than how to tell a compelling story. Actually, being able to tell
In 1963, Barbadian author, Austin “Tom” Clarke interviewed Malcolm X, who articulated the essence of the oppression of the Black race. Malcolm correctly identified this oppression as economic warfare, and said the solution lies in the creation of separate Black states in America.  This was not as novel an idea as it may sound, because Black Americans had already attempted the creation of all-Black towns in America. The wealthiest of such towns was dubbed Black Wall Street. Black thinkers may find the ideas expressed in this interview recorded over fifty years ago still relevant to us today.
Disruption has less to do with a new product or novel technology and more to do with a process embedded within the capitalist construct itself. As long as we continue to live in a capitalist economy, new technologies will be rolled out that will continue to alter the way we write and publish. Writing a book is an important aspect of self-actualization, self-validation and professional development. A book bearing an author’s name is tangible evidence of her credentials, and proves her to be a woman of letters, educated, intelligent and civilized. But an author is no longer only someone who writes