Associate Professor of French and Francophone Studies and Chair of the Department Kanaté Dahouda recently published an essay in a new book on the French Caribbean “Poet of the Negritude” movement, Léon-Gontran Damas: poète modern, published by Ibis Rouge Editions (Matoury, Guyane, 2009).
Dahouda’s essay, “Léon-Gontran Damas et la quête de l’identité nègre,” deals with ways in which the French Caribbean writer Damas uses poetics of memory and subversion as a means to assert a new racial and cultural identity. In Dahouda’s article, this new identity is shown to be the basis of a literary and cultural renewal focused around black values, particularly in the historical context of colonial domination in French Guiana.
In addition, Dahouda has worked recently with experts in Francophone Studies to publish the yearly journal L’Année Francophone Internationale 2009-2010. An article of his included in the journal examines the political and economic crises, as well as the social and cultural issues, that the residents and government of the Republic of Ivory Coast dealt with during 2008-09. In the article, Dahouda reflects on the diplomatic actions that the international community has taken to develop an effective approach to resolving the Ivorian crisis on behalf of national reconciliation and peaceful social coexistence.
A member of the French faculty since 2001, Dahouda holds a doctorate in Francophone Comparative Literatures from Laval University (Quebec, Canada) and an M.A., post-masters and B.A. from Université Nationale de Côte d’Ivoire. As a scholar, he has been co-author of and contributor to the following publications or reviews: Vivre l’École (Abidjan, Ivory Coast); Québec français, Dictionnaire des Oeuvres Littéraires du Québec (VII) (Quebec, Canada); Présence francophone (Worcester, Massachusetts); Francofonia (Spain); International Journal of Canadian Studies (Ottawa, Canada); Tangence (Quebec); Neohelicon (Hungary). He is also the author of Aimé Césaire Paul Chamberland et le pays natal (Africana, Québec, Canada, 2001) and editor of Les Figures de l´exil dans les littératures francophone and Mémoires et Identités dans les Littératures Francophones (Paris, 2008).
His field of teaching extends to Francophone literatures, cultures and societies (Quebec, the French Caribbean, and Africa). His principal research interests include contemporary Francophone issues, exile and quest for identity, and the memory of violence as well as the writing of subversion in contemporary francophone fictions. He is a member of American Association of University Professors, the International Council of Francophone Studies, French Canadian Association for the Advancement of Science, Modern Language Association and American Association of Teachers of French.