News Releases

UWI mourns the loss of Professor Barrington Chevannes

For Release Upon Receipt - November 15, 2010

St. Augustine

The University community is extremely saddened at the death of our colleague, Professor Barrington Chevannes, who had been ailing for several weeks. Barry, as he was known, was a very vital part of our community, having had a long and distinguished career as a lecturer, researcher and administrator. At the time of his passing he was Director of the UWI Centre for Public Safety and Justice. Earlier this year, he spearheaded the planning and arrangements for the official funeral of Vice-Chancellor Emeritus, Professor The Hon Rex Nettleford and delivered several tributes to Professor Nettleford, including one to a special sitting of UNESCO in Paris and another published in Caribbean Airways’ in-flight magazine.

Professor Chevannes’ contributions to University life and to Public Service were exemplary. Important among these was the National Commission on Ganja which he headed and out of which the National Report on Ganja Use was produced. Of special note are Professor Chevannes' innovative initiatives such as his founding of Fathers Incorporated (an organisation dedicated to men, especially fathers), and his contributions to the Peace Management Initiative. Professor Chevannes was also Chairman of the Institute of Jamaica which awards national honours in the form of the Musgrave Medal. Having pursued a wide range of academic, cultural and practical activities, this distinguished Jamaican has received many awards nationally and internationally. He received the Vice Chancellor's Award (UWI) for outstanding achievements in research, teaching and public service and is also recognised for his original contribution to Jamaican folk and religious song heritage.

Professor Chevannes’ research focus has encompassed aspects of Caribbean culture and identity such as the family and sexual relationships, male gender issues, crime/violence, social integration, indigenous religious manifestations such as Revivalism and Rastafari, socio-political movements and Garveyism.

A graduate in Philosophy and Classics from Boston College, USA, Barry Chevannes had the M.Sc. in Sociology from the University of the West Indies (UWI), and Ph.D. (Anthropology) from Columbia University. A Professor of Social Anthropology, former Head of the Department of Sociology, Social Work & Psychology and former Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences at the UWI, Barry Chevannes was born in Kingston, and has had a distinguished teaching career. He has taught in institutions far and wide including St Mary's College and Campion College at the High School level, and City University of New York and Columbia University as well as the UWI at the tertiary level. Additionally he was an international research consultant answering demands throughout the West Indies, Europe, and the United States.

Our sincerest condolences are extended to Professor Chevannes’ wife Pauletta, and his two daughters, Abena and Amba.

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About UWI

Over the last six decades, The University of the West Indies (UWI) has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a full-fledged University with over 40,000 students. Today, UWI is the largest and most longstanding higher education provider in the English-speaking Caribbean, with main campuses in Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago, and Centres in Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, The Bahamas, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, St Christopher (St Kitts) & Nevis, St Lucia, and St Vincent & the Grenadines. UWI recently launched its Open Campus, a virtual campus with over 50 physical site locations across the region, serving over 20 countries in the English-speaking Caribbean. UWI is an international university with faculty and students from over 40 countries and collaborative links with over 60 universities around the world. Through its seven Faculties, UWI offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Engineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Pure & Applied Sciences, Science and Agriculture, and Social Sciences.