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UTT awards Mon­tano and Ein­tou Springer honorary doctorates


UTT awards Mon­tano and Ein­tou Springer honorary doctorates

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So­ca star Machel Mon­tano and cel­e­brat­ed play­wright Pearl Ein­tou Springer were grant­ed hon­orary doc­tor­ates by the Uni­ver­si­ty of Trinidad and To­ba­go yes­ter­day.

Springer, who gave a speech in re­sponse to her honorary dis­tinc­tion, heaped praise up­on UTT for their se­lec­tion of awardees, point­ing to her in­clu­sion as well as Mon­tano’s and for­mer ed­ucator/politi­cian Roy Au­gus­tus.

“This syn­er­gy of awardees here to­day is so amaz­ing to­day. Some­one at UTT is se­ri­ous about getting our sto­ries told,” said Springer, who ex­plained that Mon­tano, as he has grown in his ca­reer, has tak­en more op­por­tu­ni­ties to ref­er­ence key mo­ments and fig­ures of our his­to­ry like Joe Talmana, a leg­endary stick fight­er.

Tal­mana, who played a ma­jor role dur­ing the Cannes Brulées Ri­ots in the late 1800s, was ref­er­enced in Mon­tano’s 2017 col­lab­o­ra­tion with Bun­ji Gar­lin “Buss Head.”

How­ev­er, Springer lament­ed, “Sad­ly Min­is­ter Gar­cia, that his­to­ry is ab­sent from our ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem.”

Springer said the lack of con­nec­tion to our his­to­ry con­tributed to “so­cial ap­a­thy, crim­i­nal­i­ty.”

“It wor­ries me when I go in­to schools to see ig­no­rance of self,” said Springer.

“The best polic­ing can­not fill the void in the be­ing of our chil­dren. Who will teach them through the plays, po­ems? …Who will in­fil­trate their new tech­nolo­gies with our sto­ries? Who will be our Stan Lee and tell them skree, the sto­ry of the orig­i­nal Spi­der­man; Anan­si?” asked Springer, who called for lo­cal his­to­ry to be in­te­grat­ed in­to the school cur­ricu­lum.

Springer al­so used the plat­form to call for fur­ther recog­ni­tion for the Mighty Shad­ow, who passed away last month.

“When will our lead­ers recog­nise Shad­ow as the philoso­pher the peo­ple have al­ready crowned?” said Springer.

Springer and Mon­tano shared an em­brace af­ter she re­ceived her doc­tor­ate.

Some 1,700 grad­uands were cel­e­brat­ed by UTT dur­ing the grad­u­a­tion events over the past two days. (TT Guardian)