Here at Tande we mourn the loss of Paulette Poujol Oriol, one of Haiti's literary foremothers who died of a heart attack on Friday March 11, 2011. Born on May 12, 1926 Oriol was celebrated for her literature, artistry and activism. She received the prestigious Prix Henri Deschamps for her novel Le Creuset in 1980. In addition to her work as a novelist Poujol Oriol was also a playwright and a performer, having founded the Piccolo Teatro, a school of performing arts where she inspired dedication to drama for a generation of Haitian youth
In addition to her contributions to Haitian arts and literature, Oriol was also a fervent feminist, a commitment that was evident in her literature, her non-fiction writing, and leadership of the Ligue féminine d'action sociale. Her important contributions to the feminist movement in Haiti continue to inspire a generation of women in Haiti and the diaspora such as Kettly Mars, Edwidge Danticat, and Myriam Chancy. The former was partnering with Oriol to write an exhaustive anthology of Haitian women.
As stated in her obituary in Le Nouvelliste on Friday, Poujol Oriol was an extraordinary Haitian Women featured by filmmaker Arnold Antonin among others such as Viviane Gauthier, Micheline Laudun Denis, Odette Roy Fombrun, Madeleine Desrosiers et Emerante De Pradines in the documentary film "Six femme haitiennes exceptionelles."
For her formidable literary contributions, her passion for the performing arts, and her unwavering feminist spirit, we give honor and respect to this fanm vanyan.