richard price & sally price

2nd edition, Duke University Press, 2006

Beacon Press, 1998

Vents d'ailleurs, 2016

Presses Universitaires de France, 2000

Ediciones Callejon, 2005

the author and the convict's colonel

The convict's king

The Convict and The Colonel

Second edition, with a new afterword,
Duke University Press

An election day massacre in colonial Martinique. A "mad" artist who lives in a cave. A satirical wooden bust of a white colonel. The artist's banishment to the Devil's Island penal colony for "impertinence." And a young anthropologist who arrives in Martinique in 1962, on the eve of massive modernization.

In a stunning combination of scholarship and storytelling, Richard Price draws on long-term ethnography, archival documents, old love letters, cinema and street theater, and Caribbean fiction and poetry to explore how one generation's powerful historical metaphors could so quickly become the next generation's trivial pursuit, how memories of oppression, inequality, and struggle could so easily become replaced by nostalgia, complicity, and celebration. Reading over his shoulder, with the help of more than one-hundred illustrations, we become witnesses to the active reinvention of history, identity, and consciousness, to the "postcarding of the past."

"A superb calaloo of a book whose ingredients of autobiography, historical narrative and the anthropologist's pursuit of the origin of folk memories reconstruct the life of a Martinique fishing village. Richard Price has a remarkable grasp of the literatures of the Caribbean, and draws on this resource to explore the underlying insanity of the colonial experience, as well as the bewildering complexities of the post-colonial world where memory is erased or invented according to the demands of a market modernity."
--George Lamming, author of In the Castle of My Skin, Natives of My Person, The Pleasures of Exile, Season of Adventure

"A wonderfully readable fusion of anthropology and memoir about culture, colonialism, and madness in the Caribbean. Price practices what a lot of postmodernists preach; the book's graceful writing and innovative form, tossing the reader back and forth in time and space, is supported by solid and original scholarship."
--Lucy R. Lippard, author of Mixed Blessings: New Art in a Multicultural America

"By beautifully crafting elements as disparate as biographical data, sociological studies, literary sources, and archival documents Richard Price's research is more fascinationg than a piece of fiction."
--Maryse Condé, author of I, Tituba, Black Witch of Salem, Crossing the Mangrove and The Last of the African Kings

"An engrossing and compelling book ... Richard Price continues to build a body of work that in seriousness and self-revelation goes beyond even the work of Clifford Geertz. But he is more than an anthropologist and stylist; he is a moralist, one who demands to be taken seriously. He enters the discussion of modern culture with Lévi-Strauss' Tristes Tropiques but he is able to carry it further than the master, because he has kept his intellectualizing anchored in the experience of cultural and social difference."
--Roger D. Abrahams, author of Singing the Master and Afro-American Folktales

"Price does it again. Mixing eras, genres and voices, he carries the reader through the contradictory streams of historical consciousness in the Caribbean island of Martinique. The result is as complex and as enticing as the sea it evokes."
--Michel-Rolph Trouillot, author of Silencing the Past

"Price continues to expand the horizon of what's possible in ethnographic writing. This new offering is a delightful, out-of-genre book that resembles a Derek Walcott epic poem ."
--Charles V. Carnegie, Transforming Anthropology

"Filled with insights that are at once theoretical, methodological, and ethnographic, The Convict and the Colonel is required reading for anyone interested in colonialism, memory, and contemporary Caribbean societies."
--Jennifer Cole, American Ethnologist

Selected Books:

“Richard and Sally Price’s elegiac account of their time living among the Saamakas of Suriname in the 1960s is wholly engrossing, and of the very highest narrative quality. I can see, smell, and feel everything they describe. The Prices have never been fresher or more readable as literature.” --George E. Marcus
Boléro Tropical, a French-language reimagining of Enigma Variations, is now available from and
Winner of the 2012 Best Book Award of the American Political Science Association in the field of Human Rights and the 2012 Senior Book Prize of the American Ethnological Society. "An extraordinary work, actively written and exceptionally thought-provoking, Rainforest Warriors will be a classic." --Donald Brenneis, UC Santa Cruz
"A delicious combination of art, anthropology, and politics"--Lucy R. Lippard. "A fascinating, entertaining, and troubling book"--Journal of Anthropological Research. "A complex story of passion, intrigue, and power"--Journal of Surrealism and the Americas. "A crackling good story"--Museum.
Winner of the 2008 Victor Turner Prize in Ethnographic Writing, the 2009 Gordon K. and Sybil Lewis Memorial Award for Caribbean Scholarship, and the 2009 Clifford Geertz Prize in the Anthropology of Religion. . . . "An astonishing performance ... as lucid and cordial as the best contemporary fiction.”--George Lamming
A lavishly-illustrated art book
A French-language original, printed in full color.
"A tour-de-force ... a true marriage of anthropology and art history." --Fred Myers, New York University
"A witty, but scholarly, indictment of the whole primitive art business." --Newsweek
"A superb calaloo of a book ... that explores the underlying insanity of the colonial experience." --George Lamming
"A true gem... The promise of literary ethnography is fulfilled: to educate and, just as a lark, to entertain." --African Arts
"Sensitive and honest, First-Time is required reading for all who seek to learn something new through first-hand, long-term research with non-western intellectuals" --Ethnohistory
"A splendid effort to recover the past." --New York Review of Books
"A splendid anthology, skillfully edited and introduced." --Eugene D. Genovese
"An innovative analysis of the creativity of African-Americans under the extreme constraints of slavery." --Rebecca Scott
"Conceived with sophistication but presented with simplicity and clarity" --Choice
"A brilliantly crafted experiment in postmodern narration --J. Jorge Klor de Alva, president, University of Phoenix
As seas dry up, books speak out loud, and elephants assume human form, we are present at a whole sequence of world-shaping happenings such as the invention of sex, the discovery of drums,and the arrival of death among humans.
Si usted habla español...
Si vous parlez français...
Als U Nederlands spreekt...
Se você fala português...
Wenn Sie Deutsch sprechen....