Madeline Frances Coopsammy
Poet Madeline Coopsammy, born in Trinidad, West Indies, studied at Delhi University, India, on a Government of India scholarship. Such scholarships were awarded to the descendants of East Indians who had gone to the Caribbean as agricultural workers from the mid nineteenth to the early twentieth century. She came to Canada in 1968, where she attended the University of Manitoba, obtaining B.Ed and M.Ed degrees. Her Master’s thesis was “The Development of a Multicultural Short Story Anthology for Canadian Schools.” She has taught Elementary, High School and ESL to new immigrants. She has been active in issues relating to immigrant women and Equality in Education. Her poetry and short stories have been published in Anthologies and Journals in Canada and the United States. Her poem, “In the Dungeon of My Skin,” was published in a Norton Anthology entitled, “New Worlds of Literature: Writing From America’s Many Cultures.” This poem was on the curriculum of some American Universities. She is a regular book reviewer for the Winnipeg Free Press. She has read her Poetry at the Winnipeg International Writers Festival, at the Museum of Man and Nature and at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. Her poem, “The Second Migration” was used as the title of a conference in Toronto in 1985, celebrating one hundred and fifty years of East Indian immigration to the island of Trinidad. For many years she has had a display booth at the annual Folklorama Festival of Nations in which she showcased the many writers the Caribbean region has produced. She believes her writing is a link between Canada with the Caribbean.