Poet and politician Aimï¿½ Cï¿½saire was born in Basse-Pointe, Martinique on June 26, 1913. He attended high school and college in France. While in Paris, he helped found the journal Black Student in the 1930s. During World War II, he returned to Martinique and was mayor of Fort-de-France from 1945 to 2001, except for a break from 1983 to 1984. He also served in France's National Assembly from 1946 to 1956 and from 1958 to 1993. In 1946, he helped Martinique shed its colonial status and become an overseas department of France. Some of his best known works include the book Discourse on Colonialism, the essay Negro I Am, Negro I Will Remain, and the poem Notes from a Return to the Native Land. He was being treated for heart problems and other ailments when he died on April 17, 2008.
Gayatri Chakravorty Spivakis university professor in the humanities at Columbia University and the author of many books, including The Post-Colonial Critic, Nationalism and the Imagination and, with Judith Butler, Who Sings the Nation-State?, the last two also published by Seagull Books.
Tariq Ali is a writer, filmmaker, and a longtime political activist and campaigner. He has written over a dozen books on world history and politics, including The Clash of Fundamentalisms, Bush in Babylon, Rough Music, and Pirates of the Caribbean: The Axis of Hope, as well as scripts for both stage and screen.