René Depestre (HAITI, 1926–)A writer of communist convictions, Depestre participated in the student uprisings of January 1943, a youthful act for which he was arrested and later exiled. In France, he contacted sur- realist and Négritude groups in addition to actively participat- ing in French decolonization movements. His participation in these movements led to his expulsion from the country. In- vited by Che Guevara in 1959, Depestre lived in Cuba for an important part of his exile, where he undertook various cul- tural and governmental posts and founded the famous cultural and writing center, the Casa de las Américas. Disillusioned with Castro’s regime, he returned to France in 1978, where he worked as a secretary for UNESCO. His work has been published in countries around the world and his poetry has appeared in many French, Spanish and German anthologies and collections. He has spent many years in France, and was awarded the Prix Renaudot in 1988 for his work Hadriana dans Tous mes Rêves. He lives in Lézignan-Corbières in south- ern France and is a special envoy of UNESCO for Haiti.