Monroe College to Host Screening of Marion Bethel's Bahamas Women's Suffrage Movement Documentary on June 26

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Acclaimed Bahamian Marion Bethel to Visit Monroe College's New Rochelle Campus for Caribbean Heritage Month

Monroe College, a national leader in urban and international education, today announced that it will host a screening for the documentary, “Womanish Ways, Freedom, Human Rights & Democracy: The Women’s Suffrage Movement in the Bahamas 1948-1962”, directed by acclaimed attorney, producer and writer Marion Bethel. The event is in honor of Caribbean Heritage Month and will be held on June 26th at the college’s New Rochelle campus, located at 145 Huguenot Street. It is open to the public and will begin with a cocktail reception at 5pm, followed by the documentary screening from 5:30pm to 7:00pm.

Ms. Bethel is a native of Nassau in The Bahamas and has garnered significant attention for using writing as a platform for cultural and political activism. Her historical documentary profiles the five leaders of the Women’s Suffrage Movement in the Bahamas during 1948-1962 – including Mary Ingraham, Mabel Walker, Eugenia Lockhart, Georgiana Symonette and Doris Johnson – and illuminates the obstacles they faced in working to spread freedom, social justice and democracy throughout Bahamian society. Ms. Bethel spent nearly 10 years working on the film, which was released in 2012, marking the 50th anniversary of the culmination of the Bahamian suffrage movement.

Prior to the screening, Ms. Bethel will attend Monroe’s Faculty Appreciation Day Lunch, themed “Celebrating the Culture of the Caribbean,” and later will meet with the college’s international students from the honors class “Film and Literature.”

“Marion Bethel is a distinguished storyteller who brings a unique perspective to the Bahamian women’s liberation efforts, having spent her childhood in close proximity to the very people her documentary profiles,” said Dr. Geneive Brown Metzger, former Jamaican Consul General and Monroe’s Director of Government Relations and Outreach for the Caribbean. “Her insights into the politics of Caribbean identity and how the suffrage movement contributes to the formation of a national narrative will be particularly meaningful for our international students, in addition to the wider community, as we celebrate Caribbean Heritage Month.”

Ms. Bethel’s writings include poetry, short stories and essays that have appeared in a variety of anthologies and journals, including Junction, From The Shallow Seas, Lignum Vitae, The Massachusetts Review, The Caribbean Writer, and Moving Beyond Boundaries. She has also been published in several literary journals, including Callaloo, River City, Poui, and MaComere, among others.

In 1993, Ms. Bethel was awarded the Casa de las Americas Prize for a volume of poetry called Guanahani, My Love, and in July 1991 she received a James Michener Fellowship by the Caribbean Writers Summer Institute at the Department of English of the University of Miami. Her latest poetry collection, Bougainvillea Ringplay, was published in 2009. She has been a guest writer at the Miami International Book Fair, the Caribbean Women Writers Series, and the St. Martin Book Fair, among others. Ms. Bethel is a graduate of Cambridge University and has worked as an attorney since 1986.

Monroe College has a campus on the Caribbean nation of St. Lucia and is actively involved in the community, most recently hosting a Caribbean Leadership Forum on crime reduction strategies, attended by the St. Lucia Prime Minister, senior police officials, criminal justice experts and other human services personnel from around the Caribbean. The school also sponsors the National School Science Fair and provides free, credit-bearing college courses to local high school students through the Jumpstart Program. The campus is home to approximately 300 students from St. Lucia and the surrounding Caribbean islands; another 200 students from the region attend the college’s NY campuses each year.


Founded in 1933, New York-based Monroe College is a nationally ranked private institution of higher learning with a real world learning approach that prioritizes hands-on academic experiences, practical and relevant academic programs, flexible learning schedules, best-in-class instructional technologies, and committed and engaged faculty to ensure that students are well positioned for career success upon graduation. Monroe College graduates more minority students than any other college in New York State.

Monroe College offers Certificate, Associate, Bachelor's, and Master's degree programs. It has campuses in the Bronx, New Rochelle, as well as in the Caribbean nation of St. Lucia, with programs offered through its Schools of Criminal Justice, Information Technology, Nursing, Education, Business & Accounting, Hospitality Management and Culinary Arts, and Allied Health Professions, as well as through its liberal arts and continuing education programs, and its King Graduate School. For more information and admissions criteria, please visit

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