Jamaica has been a land exploited and oppressed by white nations for much of its history. First colonized by the Spanish and then the British, it seems hard to imagine a time when it was just the native people living in peace and harmony with the land. Many years after the white man first jammed himself onto the beaches of Jamaica, reggae music was born. A continuing tradition, this easy-to-groove-to music style originated as a voice against this oppression; it was the peaceful islanders way of finally communicating their plighted history to all who would listen, or all who could appreciate a good beat. Much of this oppression came in the time of slavery; a period of nearly two hundred years where those of a dark skin were considered property of the light skinned ones, inferior in all ways. Most of their labor was on sugar plantations, an export that Jamaica was supplying much of the world with. Later in their history, it would be bananas that the British would learn to exploit.
Until the philosophy which holds One race superior and another inferior Is finally and permanently discredited and abandoned That until there are no longer first class second class citizen Of any nation. Until the color of a man’s skin Is of no more significance than the color of his eyes That until their basic human rights are equally guaranteed to all, Without regard to race.
That until that day, The dream of lasting peace, world citizenship And the rule of international morality Will remain but in a fleeting illusion To be pursued, but never attained… -Haile Selassie
Even as slavery was finally abolished at the beginning of the nineteenth century, these views and the oppression brought on by them continued. Without the thousands of hands wor...
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...o the plight of the Jamaican people; the methods employed by Parliament and local estate owners showed how far they were willing to go to ensure they stayed in power.
1) Holt, Thomas C. The Problem of Freedom: Race, Labor, and Politics in Jamaica and Britain, 1832-1938.Johns Hopkins University Press; Baltimore. 1992
2) Ragatz, Lowell Joseph. The Fall of the Planter Class in the British Caribbean
Octagon Books, Inc; 1963.
3) Walvin, James. Black Ivory; A History of British Slavery. Howard University Press, Washington, D.C.; 1994.
4) Petras, Elizabeth McLean. Jamaican Labor Migration: White Capital and Black Labor, 1850-1930. Westview Press, London; 1988.
5) New International Magazine. ‘Battle of the Bananas’. http://188.8.131.52/ni/issue317/battle.htm; Oct., 1999.
6) Anadol, Sinan. ‘Caribbean Soul’. www.atlasturkey.com; May, 1998.
In this essay, the author
Explains that jamaica has been oppressed by white nations for much of its history. reggae music originated as a voice against this oppression.
Opines that the philosophy which holds one race superior and another inferior is permanently discredited and abandoned until there are no longer first class second class citizens of any nation.
Opines that the dream of lasting peace, world citizenship, and the rule of international morality will remain in a fleeting illusion.
Explains that jamaica believed that one race was superior and all others inferior and that the "superior" race had the right to own the lives of people of a different skin tone.
Explains that the slaves were treated as objects, not as humans. they were forced to farm their own food and work in the plantations all day.
Explains that the british parliament realized that change must be quickened, not avoided, and in 1833 declared an end to this legal ownership.
Explains that jamaica's sugar supply was in danger of being obliterated even before slavery was abolished.
Analyzes how the abolishment of slavery didn't mean that the freed jamaicans ran into the woods and slept beneath a banana tree. the number of peasant estates increased twenty times from 1840-1845.
Explains that the land sold to them by the english was often too small and the soil too hard to grow a great number of crops on.
Analyzes how the british parliament predicted the west indies islands after the abolishment of slavery. they believed that white races were superior to the black and the brown, and that human differences were racially determined.
Explains that reggae music laid the groundwork for the oppressive feelings and voice expressed in the music. the british economic stranglehold on the island and the quashee belief of white superiority frustrated the native islanders.
Explains that jamaica's economy prospered during british colonization, and agriculture continued to bring the island much revenue.
Explains that the coffee industry suffered severely as a result of the abolishment of slavery, and the small settlements were cashing in on this as well.
Analyzes how the british needed the hands of the peasants, but knew that they could be easily exploited.
Explains that withdrawal from estate residency came more gradually, and in the context of the freed people's struggle to define the proper limits of their former masters' authority.
Explains that the british were fired up at this lack of control over the jamaicans, and began to look for power over them in new ways.
Explains that jamaica's economy slipped into further depression due to the decrease in the sugar industry and exports.
Opines that no laborer likes to live on estates, nor will he do so unless necessity constraints it, for fear of being turned off when any dispute arises.
Explains that as the economy sunk further into depression, more peasants were forced to move back onto the plantations and work part time for the estate owners, mostly british.
Analyzes how the casual attitude of the jamaicans was misconstrued as laziness by the overworking british government.
Analyzes how the planter paid them low wages and sometimes no wages. as landowner, he charged them high rents or kept them out of possession of land for themselves.
Explains that the rebellion began at a courthouse, as that is the root of the british's control over the peasants.
Explains that fruit became jamaica's single most important export by the end of the nineteenth century, partly due to the increase in american purchasing of jamaican exports.
Analyzes how a handful of enterprising jamaicans and americans facilitated the switch from domestic bananas to an export crop.
Describes how lorenzo baker used his fleet of caped cod fishing vessels to ship bananas to the us, naming his company 'united fruit'.
Explains how baker converted independent peasant banana growers into wageworkers by monopolizing the market and buying out other companies.
Explains that peasant producers were more like wage workers paid at a piece rate than independent contractors, deprived of autonomy in the production process.
Describes how one multinational corporation crushed the formerly independent peasant cultivators, pushing them back to slave labor and oppression, a period they had worked so hard to advance from.
Describes how an english chap named john w. grace was requested to come to jamaica and assist his brother, michael sheffield grace, in running his banana shipping company.
Narrates how alicia and katherine spent twenty-two years in jamaica, arriving at age eight. they asked their great-aunt if she could recall some of the details of her life there.
Analyzes how united fruit relied heavily on the labor of the peasants. alicia said that they had a friendly relationship with the jamaicans, but it was never intentional exchanges.
Narrates how the servants lived in the hills of the blue mountains, and most had about a mile walk to the plantation every day.
Explains that peasants would harvest fruit and prepare it for shipping, while others would work on upkeep of the grounds. they had five indoor servants, whom the family would interact with more than any other worker.
Asks alicia if there were tensions between them and the jamaicans, who had been oppressed by their country for so long. if this attitude were truth, it would be a shame to think that they had given up their dreams of once again being self-sufficient.
Analyzes how alicia comes from a very proper english lifestyle, and eventually married an english count. her view can be considered narrow minded, perhaps even racist, due to this protected lifestyle.
Explains that the company grew from 50 to 2,000 employees during the time that john ran the business, from 1920 until 1942.
Opines that w.r. grace throws a large, weeklong party every ten years, the last one being in 1992, and the next in 2002.
Opines that jamaica's political freedom from england and the formation of two major political parties, the jamaican labor party and people’s national party, ensured the rights of the working class.
Opines that jamaica's economy relies heavily on tourism and the visiting of white people with money to spend on their island, but they are visiting, and not staying.
Explains that the british had to find ways of stomping down the success of the jamaican peasants, who weren't eager to return to the slave fields they had just gained freedom from.
Explains that even when bananas became successful overseas, the peasants were monopolized, this time by an american company with the help of british boats.
Explains that studying jamaica from several viewpoints was fascinating. a living relative's account of life in jamaica showed how ignorant the british were to the plight of the jamaican people.
Introduces holt, thomas c., ragatz, lowell joseph, walvin, james, and petras, elizabeth mclean.
Stampp, K. M., The Peculiar Institution: Slavery in the Ante-Bellum South, 2nd ed. New York: Alfred. A. Knopf, 1961.
In this essay, the author
Explains that the thirteenth amendment to the united states constitution officially prohibited slavery and all its forms on the 6th december 1865. the study of slavery has produced one of the richest and most varied historiographies in all of american history.
Analyzes how rucker's the river flows on: black resistance, culture and identity formation in early america is a fascinating consideration of african culture and its effect on the history of slavery in north america.
Analyzes rucker's book, the river flows on, as an ardent defence of the importance of african cultural traditions to the institution of slavery in north america.
Analyzes how rucker's book, the river flows on, builds on current ideas in slave literature and establishes its own unique account of slave resistance.
Explains that rucker's biggest strength is his treatment of the primary sources he adapts to support his thesis. artefacts discovered at graveyard sites and examples of metalwork are just two types of primary source.
Opines that rucker's book, the river flows on, is a significant step towards understanding the effect of african cultural heritage on the slave trade in north america.
Describes the works of allison, r. j., and creel, m. w.
Slavery in Colonial America
Slavery was created in pre-revolutionary America at the start of the seventeenth century. By the time of the Revolution, slavery had undergone drastic changes and was nothing at all what it was like when it was started. In fact the beginning of slavery did not even start with the enslavement of African Americans. Not only did the people who were enslaved change, but the treatment of slaves and the culture that each generation lived in, changed as well.
When America was first founded the colonists believed that they could do one of two things.
In this essay, the author
Explains that slavery was created in pre-revolutionary america at the start of the seventeenth century. by the revolution, slavery had undergone drastic changes.
Explains how indentured servitude began in colonial america. the colony was in desperate need of people who could work the fields to help continue the growth of their cash crop, tobacco.
Explains that the first african americans that were put to work in jamestown were not treated in the way that people traditionally think of early slavery.
States that massachusetts, connecticut, and virginia were of the first states to legalize slavery. with crops prospering, the need for slaves was increasing at an alarming rate.
Describes the new york slave conspiracy of 1741, where slaves started rioting and killing colonists.
Explains how missionaries began teaching slaves how to read and write and preaching the word of god. slaves began to sing songs about god and begin to preach about the freedom that he would one day bring.
Analyzes how one question sums up the entire revolution and shows exactly how corrupt the colonists were.
Explains that the african american culture has been shaped around what their ancestors were put through and the struggles that they endured.
Explains davis, thomas j., the new york slave conspiracy of 1741 as black protest.
Explains johnson, charles, patricia smith, and wgbh series research team. africans in america.
In the book Beyond Massa: Sugar Management in the British Caribbean, 1770-1834, by John F. Campbell, it’s main focus encompasses and revolves around issues surrounding slavery practices by using Golden Grove estate in Jamaica as a primary source during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The author highlighted the slavery period of the sugar monoculture era, followed by the development of amelioration policies, to the abolition of the slave trade in 1807, and finally the failed industry in 1834. The book uses archival data which logically analyses, revises and modifies the historical ideologies, thus manifesting revisionist philosophies about sugar estates in the Caribbean region. It really sets the reader to have different insights and perspectives with respect to the managerial systems, hierarchical structure, political dimensions, social relationships and a relatively new field of analysis- the Human Resource Management strategies. This report seeks to discuss the ideas of color-class hierarchy, the role of gender and sex, the introduction of the Amelioration Act while analysing the role of slavery and Human Resource Management (HRM) and lastly the effectiveness of the writer’s work and it’s relation to the current course.
In this essay, the author
Analyzes the book beyond massa: sugar management in the british caribbean, 1770-1834, by john f. campbell.
Analyzes how a "color-class hierarchy" existed with racial differentiations and divisions based on phenotype. the content of the book builds on this visage to show revisionist aspects of this stereotypical analogy.
Analyzes the controversy of gender and sex in beyond massa, which focuses on the paternalistic view of the plantation.
Analyzes how the amelioration policy was replaced by the slave trade act in 1807 up until its "signaled death"
Opines that beyond massa was a learning experience and lacked enthusiasm and ability to keep interest of the reader.
Originally a bonded man, Johnson is introduced as an exemplary figure in terms of his capacity to raise himself above his humble beginnings and to die having accrued a significant amount of property; enabling him to bear a reputation as a “black patriarch” (Bree & Innes, 7) and someone who, regardless of the evident difference between themselves and their white neighbours, proved through their very existence that opportunities for social advancement existed for the non-white individuals in the period under
In this essay, the author
Analyzes breen and innes' myne owne ground as a book that seeks to address period in us history, where formally bonded black americans achieved an unusual level of freedom.
Explains that s describe their project as one which seeks to refute a universal narrative of immiseration by careful attention to the particular details of the lives of their subjects.
Analyzes how the book begins with a study of the life of anthony johnson, who is described as possessed of "immense" energy and ingenuity.
Analyzes how s discuss pre-suppositions about the nature of life in northampton, including disproportionate punishments for black americans, and in inherent hostility between black and white servants.
Analyzes how breen and innes conclude their study with a consideration of the relationship between property and freedom.
Analyzes how s' desire to refute a universalizing tendency with regard to black immiseration leads to the book's most significant moments.
Concludes that "myne owne ground" gives a clear and convincing account of the lives of free blacks in virginia in the period in question.
This makes for a very interesting read. Johnson’s personal writing style does not shine through much due to the way he chose to build narrative around historical sources, but nevertheless he tells an interesting, cohesive story that draws the reader in and exposes some of the insidious history surrounding the trade of slaves in our history. The book is divided into seven sections, ten including the introduction and epilogue, as well as a section dedicated to illustrations of historical documents alluded to in the text. Johnson also includes a section entitled “Notes,” where he has compiled his sources. The “Notes” section is not a straight bibliography. It also includes helpful author notes describing the context of sources that did not fit in the main narrative, and references for those wanting to do their own research. For example, one note includes information on a book by Tadman which contains information on the number of slaves traded. The author includes a summary, including migration numbers and the percentage of those numbers directly related to the trade. This section is helpfully divided and labeled, with the notes referred to in each part of the book labeled by section. Each notation and illustration is referenced within the text by numbers, which coincide with each note or illustration offering more
In this essay, the author
Opines that when reading about the institution of slavery in the united states, it is easy to focus on life for the slaves on the plantations. walter johnson, of soul by soul, tells a different narrative.
Analyzes how johnson introduces a new perspective on slavery through historical documents and transcriptions of personal accounts.
Explains that johnson is a winthrop professor of history and specializes in african and african american studies. the book soul by soul won the thomas j. wilson prize.
Analyzes how soul by soul is written in an objective style, as uses copious quotes from his historical sources to tell the story rather than inserting his own opinions.
Recommends soul by soul to anyone interested in learning more about the economy of the domestic slave trade in the united states.
The study of slavery and its means has always been a controversy in the society-was it a necessary evil or was it an unimportant mean to boost up white morale? The topic has always been of interest to historians, and the frequency of the event in the earlier centuries proves to be a serious debate among people. Slavery is controversial as people of the past practiced it without remorse, while today one cannot even think about owning someone as theirs. Some might argue that slavery was good for the Southern economy during the 17th century, but the institution itself was more than just the outcomes it brought. Slavery was an evil institution because it was a brutal practice, it reinforced a racial caste system in the South and it was sexually demeaning.
In this essay, the author
Analyzes the controversy over the institution of slavery. it was an evil institution because it reinforced a racial caste system in the south.
Argues that slavery was brutal because it forced african americans into hard physical labor, tore their families apart, and failed to provide them with necessities for living.
Explains that slaves were forced to slaughter animals, dig ditches, cut and transport large amounts of wood, drive their masters anywhere they wanted, plant and harvest crops, and perform any repairs on the plantation.
Explains that slavery was an evil institution because slaves were stripped of basic necessities of a decent life. they lived in constant fear that they would get shipped away, starve from hunger, get whipped or ultimately get killed.
Narrates how the niggers were afraid to move after the war was over. they stayed with marse jonah for about a year after freedom, then ole solomon hall made her an offer.
Explains that slavery was evil because it allowed slave owners to degrade and strip the rights of fellow human beings without any consequence, and because slaves were ultimately treated as property.
Argues that slavery reinforced a racial caste system as whites restricted interracial relationships and theorized that blacks were the inferior species.
Explains that slavery was an evil institution as it was sexually demeaning due to numerous rapes, impregnation, and psychological damage to a slave.
Opines that slavery violated the rights of freedom of the slave, accompanied by physical, economical, and mental abuses that cannot be justified any moral or religious codes widely accepted in the world.
Explains that cotton gin patented. welcome to the black box, personal narratives in high definition.
Explains that ojeda, auriana, the civil war 1850-1895, greenhaven press, 2003, and thinkquest.
Jacobs, Harriet. Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. Ed. Jean Fagan Yellin. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1987.
In this essay, the author
Analyzes how harriet jacobs' "incidents in the life of a slave girl" describes the institution of slavery crippling the accepted family structure.
Analyzes how linda sacrificed her innocence, physical freedom, right to motherhood, and responsibilities as a granddaughter during her battle to be free american.
Analyzes how jean toomer accentuated the fight for freedom through love and passion, imagery, and tom's lynching.
Analyzes how toomer shaped a relationship based on not having the freedom of love and passion due to race.
Analyzes how w.e.b dubois' work, the souls of black folk, described the constant struggles for life of african american's in america. he wanted blacks to work hard to become active parts of american society.
Explains that jacobs, harriet, incidents in the life of a slave girl, edited by jean fagan yellin.
Analyzes how the powerful ideal of freedom developed in harriet jacobs' incidents in the life of a slave girl, blood-burning moon, and w.e.b dubois' the souls of black folk slaves played an overwhelming role throughout the history of the united states.
Opines that dubois was brought to the spot light at the wrong time in history. his movements made people think of what a difference one person can make.
Examining primary sources can be a useful tool to provide partial insights of past events. Olaudah Equiano’s Interesting Narrative is an example of a primary source that provides insights on 18th century New World slavery. His autobiography takes the reader on a journey starting from his village in Africa through the slave trade to the West. He reveals many insights on slavery, but there are also limitations that do not provide the full picture, which is to be expected. Nevertheless, Equiano’s autobiography provides important insights on 18th century New World slavery through his experiences and the experiences of others.
In this essay, the author
Analyzes olaudah equiano's interesting narrative as an example of a primary source that provides insights on 18th century new world slavery.
Analyzes how equiano began his autobiography with his experiences of slavery at a young age in his village and on the middle passage.
Analyzes how equiano reveals many insights on slavery in the new world while being in virginia and montserrat.
Analyzes how equiano's experiences on 18th century new world slavery are limited because they are unique.
Analyzes how olaudah equiano's interesting narrative provides partial insights on 18th century new world slavery. he recounts the horrors of being kidnapped and traveling through the middle passage.
Martin, Nona. "I’se a Man. Political Awakening and the 1942 Riot in the Bahamas." Journal of Caribbean History, 41 (1&2) (2008): 3.
In this essay, the author
Analyzes how "island in the sun" mirrored the mindset both social and political of the people at that time.
Analyzes how boyhe realizes that he doesn't have full equality and segregation is still very there. the bahamas had official seclusion in the 1960s, blacks had to leave bay street by a certain time.
Analyzes how apartheid was used to maintain a labor system through the use of control and dominance, and violence was inflicted on whites and blacks who resisted its laws.
Compares the films "island in the sun" and "cry freedom", which portray society's social-political issues.
Analyzes how direct colonization has ended its dogmas, but it is still present in the identity of its people. the fight for economic equality during the burma road riot can be considered a precursor to majority rule and independence
Explains martin, nona, and mccartney, donald m. bahamian culture and factors which impact upon it.