Prof. Eudine Barriteau, Pro Vice-Chancellor, University of West Indies, Barbados, narrated the gender issues on Migration on January 10, 2020.
“The Caribbean was born out of plunder, pillage, occupation and enslavement. It is an amalgamation of arrivals and departures, by force or willingly,” she said. “The Caribbean’s are perpetually on the move: Just in case – work comes, immigration officer comes calling among other reasons that may necessitate moving.”
Prof. Barriteau highlighted the gender issues and how they can be supported or squashed by state power. She pointed out that unlike the Obama administration which was lenient and allowed gender identities, the Trump administration has been very intolerant.
“Gender is not interchangeable with women or sex,” she clarified. She explained that most Caribbean’s have transnational families that hold family meetings via Skype since they don’t have a home. “The concept of a home is foreign to the Caribbean,” she said.
When slave trade was abolished in 1834, one hundred years later, between 1940 and 1965 some slaves migrated to Europe and more so the United Kingdom mainly because the Britons encouraged migration, secondly, the slaves had British passports.
Prof. Barriteau also explained in details the tribulations that women underwent during the slave trade including rape and separation from family and low pay.
Earlier on, Prof. Barriteau paid a courtesy call to the University of Nairobi, Vice Chancellor, Prof. Stephen Kiama where they discussed staff and student exchange programs and collaborations. As the University of West Indies, they are keen on collaboration in the areas of medical sciences, online executive MBA for health professionals, infectious diseases, biosecurity studies, culture and performance arts.
Prof. Kiama agreed to support the staff and student exchange programs noting that the University is strong on collaboration with the universities in the East and the West. On online education, the Vice Chancellor observed that Online and Distance e-Learning, is the next frontier of growth.