Arrow Symposium Call for Papers

The Fourth Symposium in the Alphonsus ‘Arrow’ Cassell Memorial Lecture Series “Storytelling: A Powerful Tool for National Development”

Thursday November 16, 2017 • Cultural Centre, Little Bay, MONTSERRAT


The First Symposium in the Alphonsus “Arrow” Cassell Memorial Lecture Series was held on November 11, 2010 under the theme “Creative and Cultural Industries: Implications for Developing Economies.” This was shortly after the passing of internationally recognised King of Soca, Alphonsus Cassell, or “Arrow” on Wednesday September 15, 2010. Suggestions from Open Campus colleagues led to the decision to memorialise Arrow with a Lecture Series using the overarching theme of Creative and Cultural Industries. The Lecture Series continues to be part of the Alliouagana Festival of the Word, the 9th edition of which is planned for November 16 to 19, 2017, with a related theme, Telling Our Stories!

Symposia and Lectures in the Series have been held as follows:

• Second Symposium was held November 10, 2011 with the theme “Enabling Creative and Cultural Industries as Forces for Change and Innovation.”

• Third Symposium was held November 13, 2014. with the theme “Arts and the Environment: Implications for the Creative and Cultural Industries in the Caribbean”

• Distinguished lectures were presented in the Series in the years 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2016.

This year, we are inviting presentations on the multi-disciplinary theme “Storytelling: A Powerful Tool for National Development.” Storytelling is regarded as an art form that dates back to pre-historic times and touches every culture around the world. The region has had the benefit of African and Caribbean storytelling traditions. Beamish and Beamish (2015) have written that stories have always been used “as a means of understanding our world and for conceptualising new material. The Greeks called them mythos or myths and in all cultures they have survived because they provide lessons, inspiration and the motivation to act.

Cavemen drew story pictures, tales were told around the fireside and every culture has its equivalent of the Seanachi, the Irish storyteller. Storytelling survives because it has important things to say and can be understood by all ages and cultures.”1

This suggests that the creative act of telling a story has the potential to support development objectives. This Symposium seeks to bring together researchers and storytellers who through their work can inspire others to action in the interest of small-island development. What are the success stories from around the world that can be used as guides for action? What are the techniques of storytelling that can motivate? What is the future of storytelling and how can we prepare to engage with the unfolding new developments?

“Storytelling as a learning tool is therefore not new, but it changes its form to respond to the changes in environment. Paintings on the wall or stories around the camp fire held sway as the main forms until the advent of the printing press when the written story began to predominate – but the oral tradition did not die.

Radio, film and television marked a further step in the development of storytelling – but the oral tradition did not die. The digital age added email, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. – but the oral tradition did not die. The oral tradition lives on. Technology has not killed storytelling; it has created a new faster, wider medium for the telling.”2

Below are some suggested topics for consideration but the list is certainly not exhaustive and other topics in support of the theme are welcome:

  • Storytelling Traditions
  • Oral Cultures
  • Personal and Contemporary Stories
  • Personal Stories through Words, Music, Dance
  • Storytelling for Healing
  • Storytelling Revival
  • Storytelling to Enhance Learning
  • Communicating/Sharing Vision for Development through Stories
  • Developing and Presenting Successful Business Narratives
  • Storytelling for Business Transformation
  • Storytelling for Change
  • Technology and Storytelling
  • Future of Storytelling
  • Storytelling for Academic Advising in Higher Education
  • Significant Historical Episodes
  • Stories in Stone: Material Culture and the Built Environment

1 Beamish, G., & Beamish, J. (2015). Cave wall to internet, storytelling, the ancient learning art. Industrial and Commercial Training, 47(4), 190-194. p 191.

2 Beamish & Beamish. p. 193

Interested persons are invited to submit proposals for participation in the Symposium by June 30, 2017. Submissions should include the title of the paper, the author’s address and contact information, (Email/Tel/Fax number), institution, a 500-word summary of the paper and author’s bio-data of no more than 250 words. By July 31, 2017, information will be shared as to which submissions will be included in the 2017 Symposium.

Submission Deadlines:

  • Paper Proposal by June 30, 2017
  • Abstract by August 30, 2017
  • Full Paper by September 30, 2017

Papers will be included on the Open Campus web site and submitted for potential inclusion in Caribbean Quarterly. Submissions are to be sent to:

For more information, kindly contact: Gracelyn Cassell (Miss), Head

The University of the West Indies; Open Campus Montserrat;

Phone: (664) 491-3924 / 2344 |Fax: (664) 491-8924