The Journal of Caribbean History: Volume 44, Issue 1

Article 4
The Pain of Remembrance: Interview with Lodewijk Alphonsus Maria Lou Lichtveld (a.k.a. Albert Helman) Suriname Intellectual and Activist

Kwando M. Kinshasa


Throughout most of the twentieth century, Lodewijk Alphonsus Maria Lou Lichtveld, aka Albert Helman was a leading Suriname novelist, intellectual, anti-colonist political activist and resistance fighter against Nazi occupation of Holland during World War Two. Riling against the Netherlands creation of a brutal slave society in Suriname with its concomitant four hundred years of racial and ethnic biases, Lichtveld’s mantra on life embodied direct involvement rather than theoretical conjecture in mollifying such historical inequities. Living to the age of ninety-two, Lichtveld was the perennial political migrant who witnessed and participated in some of the twentieth century’s most notable armed struggles and political forums against tyranny and fascism. His resulting bouts of cynicism on the human condition were however continually balanced with an unending search for social justice. While the focus is on Lichtveld, the Introduction to the interview contains some highlights of what the resistance entailed through the experiences of Ab Judell and Conie (Constance van der Maesen).