President David Granger, on Tuesday evening, paid homage to his former history lecturer at the University of Guyana (UG), Sister Mary Noel Menezes, who at age 87, launched her new book entitled ‘Guyana and the Wider World’, which features a collection of her essays and addresses.
A release from the Ministry of the Presidency yesterday said that the topics covered in the book include education, Christianity, Guyana’s Indigenous Peoples and the Guyana-Venezuela border controversy.
The proceeds from the sale of the book will be donated to the Mercy Boy’s Home. Publisher, Vic Insanally presented a cheque for $100,000 in advance in anticipation of expected sales to Sister Celine Marie of the Home, the statement said.
The release said that the President spoke fondly of his interactions with Sister Menezes, describing her as a meticulous and dedicated teacher, who gave her students a granular method of instruction, particularly as it related to research. He told the gathering that Sister Menezes published a book called ‘A guide to historical research’ and later penned another book entitled ‘How to do better research’.
“This meant that once you passed through her hands you had to know how to do research and sometimes even after you have grown up and become an ‘old boy’, when you write something you would ask yourself, would Sister approve of this? This book that is being launched here gives you an idea of Sister’s intellect, the range of her interests and the intensity and passion with which she wrote. Students who were taught by her were made to think,” Granger said.
Her past students include former UG Vice Chancellor, Dr. James Rose, former Registrar, Dr. David Chanderballi, former Acting Chancellor of the Judiciary, Carl Singh, former Dean of the School of Education and Humanities, Tota Mangar and UG’s first Master’s graduate, Dr. Basdeo Mangru.
The release said that Sister Menezes’ friend and colleague, Dr. Winston McGowan, who edited the book, described her as an observant and militant individual who held very strong views on a wide range of issues and said that this book, which documents some of those views, is worth being added to individual library collections. “The book consists mainly of articles and addresses that Sister made about private groups and individuals, some of whose contributions are of an academic nature,” he said, according to the release.
Sister Menezes who was born in 1930, is a nun, Emeritus Professor of History, philanthropist, author and recipient of the country’s second highest National Award, the Order of Roraima as well as the Golden Arrow of Achievement.