Freedom of Speech

From Haiti to Miami, Sosyete Koukouy champions Kreyol culture

When Mapou settled in New York City, he started a new chapter of Sosyete Koukouy, working to educate the city's Haitian population about its culture and heritage. He did the same thing after he moved to Miami in the early Eighties, and has since founded chapters in Connecticut and Canada. Throughout, he has been a crusader for Haitian culture.

"Jan Mapou is the only one in the Haitian community who's doing what he's doing," says Dr. Jean-Robert Cadely, a professor of French linguistics and Kreyol at Florida International University. "His cultural center is not only for the Haitians in Miami, but it is well-known in all the communities of the Haitian diaspora."

Cadely believes Mapou's play could act as a unifying element in a notoriously divided Haitian community. "The community as a whole will go see the play, intellectuals as well as illiterates, because Haitian history in general touches every Haitian," says the academic. "You don't have to be educated to see Libète ou Lanm."

Lib├Ęte ou Lanm (Liberty or Death) revisits the 
1791 slave revolt that led to Haiti's independence
Jacqueline Carini
Lib├Ęte ou Lanm (Liberty or Death) revisits the 1791 slave revolt that led to Haiti's independence
Sheila Bastien (center) recovers from a brutal rape 
during the revolt
Jacqueline Carini
Sheila Bastien (center) recovers from a brutal rape during the revolt

Details

Sunday, March 21 at 7:30 p.m.. Tickets range from $15 to $20. Call 305-374-2444.
The Gusman Center of the Performing Arts, 174 E Flagler St.

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