LA Creole Conference to Explore Origins of Early Settlers
Who Helped Establish Rich Creole Culture in New Orleans
The Louisiana Creole Research Association’s annual conference, “Old World Connections: Creolization in New Orleans,” to be held at Xavier University, Oct 19-20, shines a spotlight on the disparate peoples from around the globe who contributed to Creole culture in colonial Louisiana, particularly in New Orleans and the lower Mississippi River valley.
Descendants of those original inhabitants -- LA Creole members -- as well as visiting historians and scholars, will bring their unique perspectives to a full day of lectures, panel discussions, multimedia presentations, and musical performances. This year’s event is hosted by Xavier University of Louisiana's Center for Intercultural & International Studies.
Throughout civilization, people have departed their homelands and migrated to new lands, driven by economics, by force, by the need for shelter and safety, or by a sense of wonder and adventure. The conference will acknowledge those who arrived bringing diverse history and culture to contribute to an emerging Creole lifestyle in New Orleans and its vicinity.
Though the term Creole is often applied primarily to the descendants of colonial French, Spanish, African and perhaps Native American inhabitants of this region, in actuality, immigrants from Germany, Austria, Ireland, China, India, Brazil, the Caribbean and elsewhere became part of the Louisiana Creole fabric, establishing families with, and alongside, folks from Bordeaux, Madrid, and Dakar.
Topics and presenters include: Weaving an Extended Heritage: Cultural Exchange & Creolization, by Dr. Ronald Dorris, professor, Xavier University; Unheard Voices: The Role of DNA in Genealogy, Bernice Bennett, professional genealogist; Overture to a New World, by Givonna Joseph, founder and director, Opera Creole, and Dr. Jean Montes, associate professor, Loyola University, New Orleans; The China Connection: The Wing Family of New Orleans, Dr. Laura Rouzan, Associate Director, Dillard University; Africans in the New World: A History of Whitney Plantation, Dr. Ibrahima Seck, Departement d’Histoire, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Senegal, & the West African Research Center; Europe & Creolization: The World in Your Neighborhood, panel with Karen Ducre Raymond, Catherine Ladiner and Diane Honore; Casa Samba: The Voice of Brazil, Curtis Pierre & the Casa Samba Dancers; St. Louis, Senegal to New Orleans, Louisiana: An African Connection, Dr. Emily Clark, professor, Tulane University.
A jazz brunch with an open dance floor will be held in nearby historic Gentilly on the final day of the conference, offering a chance for continued conversation in a relaxed social setting.
The Louisiana Creole Research Association, or LA Creole, founded in New Orleans in 2004, is dedicated to preserving Creole culture through historical and genealogical research. LA Creole holds annual conferences, free public programs, and publishes an annual journal.
To get more information, visit www.lacreole.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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