Episodes in My Life: The Autobiography of Jan Carew

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More About This Title Episodes in My Life: The Autobiography of Jan Carew


Towards the end of a long and astonishingly full life, whose scope and variety most of us can only dream about, Jan Carew began writing his memoirs. A global, multifaceted man, they cover his multiple lives as Guyanese/Caribbean novelist, anti-colonial and anti-imperialist activist, the early shaper of Black Studies in the United States, actor and playwright, painter, agricultural evangelist, advisor to Heads of State in Africa and the Caribbean and theoretician of the Columbian origins of racism in the Americas. Where there are gaps, Joy Gleason Carew goes back to some of the vivid, eyewitness journalism Jan Carew wrote in those heady days of hope and struggle.


Jan Carew (1920-2012) led a rich and varied life as a writer, artist, educator, philosopher, Pan-Africanist, and advisor to heads of state in Ghana, Guyana, Jamaica and Grenada. He is best known for his landmark novels, Black Midas and The Wild Coast. The author of Blacks, Reds, and Russians: Sojourners in Search of the Soviet Promise, Joy Gleason Carew is the resident linguist and an Associate Professor in the Department of Pan-African Studies at the University of Louisville. She has been teaching in academe for over forty years, in institutions as varied as community colleges, major research universities, small liberal arts colleges, and historically black universities. She met Jan Carew in 1974 at Northwestern University and they spent the next 37 years collaborating on projects together in the US and abroad.