Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Haitian Writer Frankétienne Named UNESCO Artist For Peace

The United Nations cultural agency today named the Haitian writer Frankétienne as one of their Artists for Peace in recognition of his contribution to French-language literature, his commitment to preserving Haitian culture and his contribution to the promotion of the agency’s ideals.

The agency’s director-general Irina Bokova bestowed the honour on Frankétienne at a forum in the Paris headquarters of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to discuss the reconstruction of Haiti’s social, cultural and intellectual heritage following January’s devastating earthquake.

A writer, actor, painter and teacher, Frankétienne is considered an emblematic figure in the Haitian culture. The author of 40 books in French and Creole, including Dezafi and Ultravocal, he has received numerous awards and literary prizes. His play Melovivi or Le Piège (“The Trap”) will be staged for the first time at UNESCO headquarters today.

Appointed for two years, Frankétienne will provide particular support to UNESCO's programmes to promote books and linguistic diversity.

The UNESCO Artists for Peace are personalities who use their influence, charisma and prestige to the service of UNESCO's message. The musicians Manu Dibango (Cameroon) and Gilberto Gil (Brazil), the actress and singer Maria de Medeiros of Portugal and the fashion designer Bibi Russell of Bangladesh are among personalities who have previously been designated.

Source: UN

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