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Past Paper Questions

FORM TP 2015052
rESr coDE 01210020-l
Paper 02 - General Proficiency
2 hours 10 minutes
1. This paper consists of l8 questions in three sections.
Section A: Questions I to 6
Section B: Questions 7 to 12
Section C: Questions 13 to 18
2. Ansu'er THREE questions; choose ONE from EACH section.
3. Write your answer in the spaces provided in this booklet.
4. You are advised to take some time to read through the paper and plan
your answers.
5. Do NOT write in the margins.
6. If you need to rewrite any answer and there is not enough space to do
so on the original page, you must use the extra lined page(s) provided
at the back of this booklet. Rememtrer to draw a line through your
original answer.
7. If you use extra page(s) you MUST write the question number
clearly in the box provided at the top of the extra page(s) and, where
relevant, include the question part beside the answer.
Copyright A 2014 Caribbean Examinations Council
All rights reserved.
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Answer ONE question only from this section.
Where questions require an example, explanation or description, your answer must be well developed
and supported by historical details.
Theme 1 - The Indigenous Peoples and the Europeans
Question 1.
Study the information below and answer the questions which follow.
The first inhabitants of the Caribbean islands were migrants. They were expert mariners and constantly
travelled through the region. When the Europeans arrived, they found two main groups occupying the
islands. On the mainland, more sophisticated civilizations were found.
(a) With reference to the map above, name the group of Indigenous People who occupied EACH of
the areas marked A, B, C, and D when the Europeans arrived. (4 marks)
(b) Describe THREE features of the settlement pattern of any one group of Indigenous People in the
Caribbean region at the time the Europeans arrived. (9 marks)
(c) Explain THREE factors which influenced the migratory patterns of the Indigenous Peoples who
occupied the Caribbean islands. (12 marks)
Total25 marks
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012100201F 2015
Question 2.
The political and economic systems of the Indigenous Peoples reflected the size and organization of
their societies. Each group selected its leaders and sustained its societies in a different way.
(a) What were the leaders of the Taino and the Kalinago communities called? (2 marks)
(b) Describe ONE way in which the lifestyle of the Kalinagos affected their economic practices.
(2 marks)
(9 marks)
(12 marks)
Total25 marks
Explain THREE roles of the leader in Taino communities.
Examine THREE features of the economic system of the Maya.
Theme 2 - Caribbean Economy and Slavery
Question 3.
The first object which saluted my eyes when I arrived on the coast was the sea, and a slave ship which
was then riding at anchor and waiting for its cargo. These filled me with astonishment, which was soon
converted into terror when I was carried on board. [... ] indeed such were the horrors of my views and
fears at the moment that, if ten thousand worlds had been my own, I would have freely parted with them
all to have exchanged my condition with that of the meanest slave in my own country.
"Interesting Narrative o-f the Life of Olaudah Eqtriano and Gustavus Vasa", 1789.
Cited in S.C. Gordon, Caribbean Generations. A CXC Historyt Source Book.
Longmans Cctribbeqn, 1983, p.55.
List FOUR ways in which Africans might become slaves within Africa. (4 marks)
Explain THREE ways in which the transatlantic trade in enslaved Africans had a negative effect
on West African societies. (9 marks)
(c) Examine THREE of the conditions on board a slaver which might have made Equiano want to
trade places with "the meanest slave in [his] own country". (12 marks)
Total25 marks
t210020/F 2015
Question 4.
Sugar plantations differed in size. The land on the sugar plantation was used for many important pulposes
with the best land under sugar cane cultivation.
(u) Identify FOUR uses of plantation land other than for cane fields. (4 marks)
(b) Examine the functions of the land for THREE of the uses identified in (a) above. (9 marks)
(c) Explain THREE reasons why so many women were engaged in work in the cane fields.
(12 marks)
Total25 marks
Theme 3 - Resistance and Revolt
Question 5.
(a) Name TWO Caribbean teritories where large Maroon settlements developed. (2 marks)
(b) State what is meant by the term 'maritime marronage'. (2 marks)
(c) Explain THREE factors which contributed to the development of Maroon societies in the Caribbean.
(9 marks)
(d) Discuss THREE measures which the Maroons took to overcome challenges to the development
of their societies. (12 marks)
Total25 marks
,-|i I
Question 6.
(a) Identiflz TWO of the social groups in St Domingue in I 791. (2 marks)
(b) Name TWO groups which fought against the revolutionaries in St Domingue. (2 marks)
(c) Explain THREE factors which led to the outbreak of the revolt in St Domingue. (9 marks)
(d) Discuss THREE factors which contributed to the success of the revolutionaries by 1804.
(12 marks)
Total25 marks
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01 21 002006
- -9-
Answer ONE question only from this section.
All responses in this section must be well developed. Points must be logically sequenced and supported
with relevant details and examples. Marks will be awarded for good organization and correct
grammar, spelling and punctuation.
Theme 4 - Metropolitan Movements Towards Emancipation
Question 7.
Imagine that you are a journalist who has been following the anti-slavery movement in Britain. Write an
article for your newspaper explaining how the 19th century revolts contributed to the abolition of slavery
in the British Caribbean.
Total25 marks
Question 8.
As an MP in the British Parliament, you voted for the Emancipation Act because you thought its terms
were favourable to all parties. With reference to its terms, discuss the reasons why the Act will benefit
plantation owners as well as enslaved men and women.
Discuss at least TWO benefits for the owners and at least THREE beneflts for the enslaved.
Total25 marks
Theme 5 - Adjustments to Emancipation, 1838-1876
Question 9.
You are a journalist in the English speaking Caribbean in the 1850s. You are assigned to the newspaper,
The Economic Update. Write an article for the paper highlighting the factors affecting the sugar industry
in British Guiana OR Jamaica between 1838 and 1854.
Your article should focus on labour, capital, technology and free trade. Total25 marks
Question 10.
You are the Govemor of Barbados after 1845. Write a letter to the Colonial Office describing the attitudes to
labour by land owners/employers and free persons in Barbados in the immediate post-emancipation period.
Total25 marks
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Theme 6 - Caribbean Economyo 1875-1985
Question 11.
Imagine you are an estate manager in the Windward Islands in the late 1800s. Explain FIVE factors which,
in your view, led to a gradual decline in the sugar industry during the period 1875-1900'
your answer should focus on the areas of environment, technological backwardness and competition from
beet sugar producers.
Question 12.
Imagine you are living in Trinidad and Tobago in the 1960s and
in the oil industry. Examine the impact of the development
(b) women (c) the standard of living.
Total25 marks
Total25 marks
1970s and have experienced changes
of the industrY on (a) occuPations
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Answer ONE question only from this section.
-{ll essays in this section must be well developed with a clear introduction and conclusion. Points
must be logicatly sequenced and should tre supported with relevant details and examples. Marks
will be awarded for good organization and correct grammar, spelling and punctuation.
Theme 7 - The United States in the Caribbean,lTT6-1985
Question 13.
Discuss THREE measures adopted by Fidel Castro to consolidate the Cuban Revolution and TWO ways
in which he opposed the United States.
Total25 marks
Question 14.
Discuss THREE ways in which the United States used its political influence and TWO ways in which it
used its economic influence, to prevent the spread of Communism in the Caribbean between 1962 and 1985 .
Total25 marks
Theme 8 - Caribbean Political Development up to 1985
Question 15.
Examine THREE economic factors and TWO political factors which contributed to the failure of the
attempt to unify the Windward Islands in the 1870s.
Total 25 marks
Question 16.
Choose ONE of the following Caribbean personalities and examine his contribution to national politics
and the regional integration movement between 1945 and 1962.
. Vere Bird
. Norman Manley
. Eric Williams
Examine at least TWO contributions for EACH area. Total25 marks
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Theme 9 - Caribbean SocietY, Uq9:19S
Question 17.
Examine FIVE initiatives undertaken by governments oR by the trade union movement to improve social
conditions in the British Caribbean territories after 1945
Total25 marks
Question 18.
Examine THREE reasons why, up to the 1960s, some sections of caribbean sociery were reluctant to
participate in the festivals and telebrations of tn" ,egion and discuss TWO factors which were responsible
for a change in this attitude' Total25 marks
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Social and economic conditions in the 20th century

In the post-emancipation period, there really were only three MAIN classes or divisions that could be seen.
1. The Upper class: this group consisted of those who owned and controlled the wealth: large landowners, businessmen, commercial dealers etc., those who had political power and sway: the Governor and his officials and the members of the House of Assembly.
2. The Middle class- many of these were coloured people. Chief among them would be the professionals such as journalists, teachers and lawyers. The identifying feature would be the fact that they were educated and held what we called ‘white collar' jobs. They wore shirt and tie to work and some could be seen proudly displaying a pen or two on their shirt pockets, sometimes more!
3. The lower or laboring class. Their lives were characterized by hard / strenuous physical work. They labored on agricultural estates whether sugar, coffee or bananas. They worked in the factories, (light industries). They did menial work in the hotels and in peoples' homes as domestics. Some were craftsmen or skilled people such as tailors and shoemakers.
Somewhere between the bottom of the middle class and the laboring class, we could insert the peasantry and small retailers. These were people who did not work for an employer, for examples the small farmer and the shopkeeper.
How the Racial Conflict was Displayed?

1. Employment
Appointments and promotion on the job, for example in the Civil service were made on the basis of family connections. Job security and permanent appointments were easily guaranteed to persons of the lighter hue (color) while others worked for decades as ‘temporary' employees.

2. Laws
As we would expect, the laws had to be adjusted after Emancipation to reflect the ‘new free' society. So, from 1838 to 1930's a series of laws were passed. In the main, these ensured the continued domination and progress of the ruling class at the expense of the working class. These were designed to tie the ex-slaves to the estates and keep them in their place as ‘hewers of wood and drawers of water'. When we looked at the Morant Bay Rebellion, we saw where a new tax of eighteen (18) shillings was levied on donkey carts while the tax was removed from plantation carts.
What was also important were the laws that were NOT passed. You already know that it was not until after the 1938 riots that Trade Unions were legalized in the British West Indies. The ruling class was NOT interested in guaranteeing or protecting workers' rights.

3. Education
The Education System was reflective of all three areas of conflict: that is gender, class and race. Let us start with the gender. At the secondary and tertiary levels there were more places in terms of scholarships and more schools for boys than girls. In Trinidad, the then Governor Lord Harris established ‘ward' schools for the Indians to attend. In terms of class, one would find that the ‘free' elementary or Government schools were poorly equipped and less Government funds were allocated to them.

4. Ostracism
Members of the upper class completely ignored those of the lower class except in cases where the latter worked for them. In Jamaica, in the 1940's, 50's and 60's the practice was for those of the upper class particularly from the urban areas, to recruit young girls from the ‘country': rural areas to work as domestic help. It was a common thing to look in the newspaper and see ads for ‘young girls from the country to work in the home'. These young girls were often treated very badly, in some cases they worked like slaves until all hours of the night and were referred to in the most disparaging way.
But ostracism was also practiced by the upper class against any member of their elite and privileged group who dared to marry outside the class. For example, Norman Manley's mother, a white woman got married to his father who was a black (colored) man. She was disowned by her family and forced to work as a postmistress at Belmont. In those days it was unheard of for a WHITE woman to be working to support her family. Only the working class did that sort of a thing!!
We see this same sort of ostracism taking place in the area of recreation. Even if they could afford it, the laboring class in general was excluded from participating in any of the organized sports or joining any of the members' only clubs that were in operation. If you were to go to horse racing in those days, it would be the privilege of the upper class to watch the races with their ‘trophy' wives on their arms, with the signature parasol (umbrella) to shade them form the sun. Any blacks or lower class that would be seen would be the workers such as the stable boy.

5. Gender conflict
a. Women who worked on the sugar estates were paid less than men. This is ironic because during the time of their enslavement the men and women performed the same tasks in the fields. In Jamaica, men earned one shilling six pence per day while women were paid six pence. That is almost fifty per cent less than what the men were getting!

6 Pence coin
b. Women were excluded from certain professions and jobs. For example, they could not enter the police force.
c. Sexual harassment and physical abuse characterized the conflict that existed between the two genders. A number of domestic helpers had this sort of experience.

6. Religion
The Established Church (Anglican) practiced ‘selective seating'. The blacks or members of the lower class were relegated to the rear of the Church.

7. Access to Financial assistance
Banks would not even consider lending money to the working class. The excuse would be that they "did not have the necessary collateral." Yet, in British Guiana in particular, preferential treatment of loan concessions were granted to Portuguese merchants and you can imagine that not ALL of them met the ‘collateral criteria'. The poorer class had to resort to informal means such as the partner system, better known in some parts of the Caribbean as throwing box or susu.

A Portuguese merchant

8. Political participation
The political arena was seen as the exclusive domain of the whites or ruling class. Firstly, before 1944, the franchise- the right to vote- was reserved for those who owned a certain amount of wealth. This would be certain acreage of land, business etc., Now, we know that Britain had not yet granted Universal Adult Suffrage to her West Indian colonies. Jamaica was the first to receive it in 1944, Trinidad a year later (1945) and the others following in the 1950's. But, the fact of the matter is, the establishment of the Crown Colony Government (1865) paved the way for a certain group to monopolize the few positions that were available. Throughout the British Caribbean, the ‘new' legislatures consisted of members that were nominated by the Governor. Who would he nominate? What class would these persons belong to? In essence therefore the system closed the door to those of a certain hue wishing to vote and or enter politics.
Let us look at what happened to Marcus Garvey, founder of the first modern political party in Jamaica from as early as 1929. He was imprisoned for three months for the tenth point of his manifesto which expressed the view of the majority of the population at the time. Garvey argued that there should be a provision in the law which allowed for the imprisonment of judges who dealt unjustly with the people.
Decreasing Tensions and Assimilation

Thankfully, there were signs that the tension and divide was decreasing, slowly but surely. Quite a bit of cultural assimilation took place.
1. It is fair to argue that both the Indians and the Chinese immigrants began to adopt European culture in their manner of dress in particular. Indian women in their saris and even worse, men in their dhotis were ridiculed, laughed at and talked about. After a few years this mode of attire was replaced by what they had seen and what was available in the West Indies.
2. Bridget Brereton, (Social Life in the Caribbean 1838-1938) tells us that in British Guiana (Guyana) a number of Indians adopted the Creole custom of the wake (nine night). Indian men could also be seen at the wakes of their departed Creole friends.
3. The Indians and Chinese realized that they were the subject of ridicule because of their language and ‘strange' accent. As a survival strategy therefore, they began to learn the English Language, used it more in public and reserved their native language for the homes where of course, it was definitely accepted. Some even decided to give their children who were born in the West Indies either English names or easier names for their friends to pronounce.
4. Conversion to Christianity - By the early 1900's a sizeable group of immigrants had converted to Christianity. Much credit must be given to the Catholics and Canadian Presbyterian Society as well as the others who worked assiduously in this area. We find also, that many of these persons who became Christians also opted for a Western marriage ceremony instead of the practices and customs they would have used if they were in their native land.
One would expect also that as time passed both immigrants and Creoles served on the same committees, sat in the same pews and eventually began to relate better with one another. It is fair to argue that both Chinese and Indian immigrants worked on charity and various fund raising events at their Churches. They became well liked for their success in this area, as you would imagine.
5. Education - At first, parents in Trinidad and British Guiana in particular were afraid to send their children to public schools. They were reluctant to do so because they either felt or heard of instances were children of immigrants were mocked and abused. As time went by they realized that education was perhaps the single most important means of social mobility for the children of working class. Amidst these fears they sent their children to these public schools. Again with time, the children became friends on the playground. In the classrooms, as children tend to do, they devised various little mischievous acts and pranks together.
6. Cultural assimilation took place in the area of food. The groups shared or passed on various recipes to each other. Curry is now a favourite Caribbean seasoning. Chinese restaurants became popular.

Curried chicken Chinese chicken

7. By the 1940's the Chinese were an example of a progressive and successful minority group. Through their various commercial activities they had made a significant contribution to the economic development of their host countries. How did they manage to accomplish this? Through hard work, determination and thrift.
8. The Chinese shopkeepers operated the trust system in their wholesale and harbadashery stores. They credited or ‘trust' the blacks the goods that they so badly needed until pay day. They often kept a little book where they recorded what the peasants had ‘trusted' and the amount. They sold vital consumer goods such as foodstuff: flour, cornmeal, saltfish and such in very small quantities.
Even when they were aware that they were being teased, they gave polite service and attention to the blacks. This was something that the blacks had not experienced from the Portuguese merchants. They felt that they could trust the ‘Chineyman'. On the other hand, it was said that the Portuguese engaged in fraudulent business practices such as short weighting the goods. The first self serve supermarket was opened by the Chinese in St. Andrew, Jamaica.
9. The Chinese also operated ice cream parlours and restaurants. These became a source of social release.
10. By the 1940's they sat on various municipal councils. They sent their children to school and they excelled. They became professionals: physicians, dentists and lawyers- who gave quality service to their clients without discriminating on the basis of race or status. Many were in the Government medical services.
11. While it is true to argue that the Chinese maintained much of their own cultural practices we must also note that they did mix with the other races. Eugene Chin, (Trinidad) son of Chinese immigrants, used his garden to host cocktail parties, games and even open air meetings. It is not difficult to see then how they came to earn the respect of the masses as well as members of the ruling class.
12. The laborers irrespective of their races faced adverse working conditions on the estates. Together, they planned and executed strikes and other methods of resistance. For example, the Duckenfield (St. Thomas) estate riot in 1885.

Chinese immigrant workers on a sugar cane plantation
13. The tension decreased because interracial marriages took place. To use an old cliché, love sees no barrier and regards no class. So, naturally some of the immigrants fell in love with people from the other groupings and formed permanent relationships. Some got married.
14. Persons from different groups lived together in the same communities. While this is a source of conflict it is also a source of unity. For some persons living together in the same place with someone of a different culture presented problems (conflicts) for others it represented opportunity. They travelled to the river and washed clothes together. They passed the time together talking and sharing as they worked together.
The Social and Economic Conditions Relating to Health

The problems of the 20th century are for the most part inherited from the century before. In a number of cases these are problems that were either ignored or inadequately addressed by the authorities. Their attitude remains the same in this century. Their approach is still one of indifference as far as the masses are concerned.
Keep in mind that as the population expands so does the volume of problems.
Social Conditions
It is fair to argue that the MAIN problems experienced by the lower class in the 1920's and 1930's were: unemployment, poor living conditions, malnutrition and low wages.
1. Malnutrition was prevalent. This was mainly due to the fact that the masses could not afford three meals a day or even one well balanced meal for the day. The majority of them had too many mouths to feed. They had to focus on quantity rather than nutritional value (quality). Their diet lacked most of the essential nutrients and vitamins required to build a healthy body. Statistics show that only 45% of the population in Jamaica was adequately nourished. Needless to say they had very little resistance to diseases.

Malnourished children
2. Diseases were rampant. The most common diseases were typhoid, yellow fever, malaria, dysentery, tetanus, hookworm, yaws and tuberculosis. In the 1930's up to 70% of the poor in the British West Indies suffered from hookworm while tuberculosis was responsible for 15% of all deaths.

3. There were very few trained doctors in relation to the size of the (ever growing) population. Many of them were not interested in attending to any member of the lower class. This was not only because they were prejudiced but also because the poor could not afford the fees. In addition most of the doctors were located in the towns, far removed from the deep rural districts and villages.
4. A number of them did their own doctoring. They used home remedies passed down from generation to generations. Here are some interesting examples: comfrey bush/leaf for headaches, eucalyptus bush or oil for cold, coconut water for hypertension (high blood pressure) and sage tea for baby gripes.

Comfrey leaves

5.Some of the members of the lower class were very superstitious. They believed that forces of evil were responsible for illnesses. As a result they did not seek medical help but resorted to ‘bush doctors' and obeahmen.
6. Poor sanitation helped to worsen the situation. There was a lack of running water and proper sewage facilities in most of the areas. Bathroom facilities were also limited and shared in the cases of tenement ‘yards'. In some parts of the rural areas people still used the ‘bush'. This helped to spread diseases. It did not help that they went mostly barefoot. Compounding the problem was those cases where the pit toilet or latrine was near to the kitchen, both being outside the main house.
7. There was a high infant mortality rate. 137 out of every 1000 infants did not live to see age one or two.
8. After World War 2 (1939-19450 international agencies such as World Health Organization (WHO) were formed. They made important advancements in the areas of eradication and prevention of diseases.
9. The establishment of the University Hospital of the West Indies provided an important training institution for doctors of the region.
The Social and Economic Conditions Relating to Education

The 20th century saw the expansion of those educational services that were begun in the 19th century. The Churches were still pretty much in control. Many of the schools were built and operated by them. The number of elementary and secondary schools increased.
1. Government built Teachers' Colleges throughout the Caribbean:
(i) Jamaica - 4
(ii) Trinidad - 3
(iii) Antigua - 1
(iv) Barbados - 1
(v) Guyana - 1

2. Teachers' salaries were increased
- Departments of Education were created in addition to the inspectors who were also known as education officers. With the introduction of internal self government the Departments evolved into Ministries.
- A more realistic curriculum was introduced. The students still did Latin in school but there was also general science, commercial subjects and domestic science.
- In 1948, higher education was available in the region with the establishment of the University College of the West Indies in Jamaica. It operated at first as an arm of the University of London. It became an independent University in 1962. Soon after Barbados and Trinidad had their own campuses: Cave Hill and St. Augustine respectively. The University of Guyana was also founded that year as an independent University.

UWI Mona Campus Jamaica University of Guyana
The Social and Economic Conditions Relating to Working Conditions

The employers had the upper hand. In some territories unemployment reached a high of 50%! The demand for work was so high that they felt that they had a right to exploit their workers. To make matters worst Trade Unions were not legalized before 1938 so the workers were at the mercy of the employers.
1. They worked for long hours, up to ten hours and more for very little pay.
2. Some worked from Monday to Saturday. They were not given pay for overtime.
3. Those who worked in the factories were exposed to dangerous machines. They were not compensated if injured in an accident. They were merely sent home. They had to bear any medical expenses involved in the treatment of the injury that they sustained.
4. They were not given any vacation or sick leave.
5. Women were not granted maternity leave.
6. The employers often dismissed workers unfairly.
7. The women suffered from sexual harassment.
8. Children were often employed in the factories and fields.
9. Those worked in the agricultural industry especially sugar, suffered from seasonal unemployment. They were employed for only a part of the year and the rest of the year they were left to starve.
The Social and Economic Conditions Relating to Housing

In the town areas, the majority of the housing facilities for the masses could best be described as overcrowded unhygienic tenement yards. They were poorly constructed hovels without much inside plumbing. The tenants shared one standpipe in the yard. From this they collected water for washing and cooking. There was one central bathroom. It was often divided in two, one part was the shower and the other compartment was the toilet.
The roofs were often made from corrugated and even rusty zinc. They leaked when it rained because the landlord's emphasis was not on repairs but collection of rent. Because the demand for housing was so high, a number of persons were afraid to complain too loudly. The landlord's would merely give them notice and rent the place to someone else forcing them to find another place. This was not an easy task especially if you had children.

Zinc housing
In the rural areas most of the houses were constructed by the owner with the help of other villages. A number of persons inherited land from their families who had acquired it through the free village movement the century before. It would not be uncommon to see thatch houses, nor outside bathroom and kitchen as described in the health conditions. Many of the houses were made of bamboo walls and or wattle and daub (mud). They usually had dirt floors. The houses usually had a large room which was called the hall (living room). The verandah was a must. It afforded one the pleasure of looking out on the horizon and calling to one's neighbor.

Wattle and Daub (mud)
In British Guiana and Trinidad a large majority of the population were descendants of immigrants. They still lived in the long unsanitary barracks that were provided for them as part of their contract.

Efforts made to Improve Social Conditions

What Part Did the Political Leaders Play in the Drive to Improve the Conditions?

1. They provided more health centres and clinics
2. Relief was provided for the aged and infirm
3. Churches and charitable organizations received donations
4. Asylums were created for lunatics
5. They allowed the creation of various co-operatives to address the specific needs of various industries, for example the All Island Banana Growers Association
6. Training was provided for Social Welfare development officers
7. Community centres were established throughout the West Indies to provide recreation and adult education.
8. Family planning was introduced. The various women's organizations played a great role in this.
9. Old age pensions and national insurances schemes were legislated in many of the territories.the clearance of slums (ghettoes) began
10. The clearance of slums (ghettoes) began
11. In some territories government began the construction of housing schemes for lower and middle income groups.
12. Road improvement projects were undertaken. This was more widespread after the availability of tarmac/asphalt from Trinidad to pave the roads.
Measures taken by Various Groups to Improve Social and Economic Conditions

1. The Trade Unions were not the only organizations that helped to improve the terrible social and economic conditions that existed. There were also other groups such as:
(a) Friendly Societies:

They offered various social services such as help with burial and sickness. Antigua was famous for these. There were quite a number of them. One example is the Daily Meal Society. As its name suggests it provided meals free of cost to those who could not afford them.
(b) Religious Groups
You are already aware of the giant role that the Church played in helping to provide education in this period. They were also instrumental in providing recreational facilities and wholesome activities for young people. Among these are:
(i) Girl Guides
(ii) Boys Scouts
(iii) Picnics and concerts
(iv) Camps and retreats
(v) The Salvation Army is a most renowned religious institution. They are among the first group to provide a place of safety and learning for the blind. They also operated hostels that provided relief for the destitute and infirmed.

Map showing when the Salvation Army started up in countries across the world.
Much of the Caribbean is green; 1900- 1919. Jamaica is Orange 1881 -1889
(vi) Trinidad and British Guiana have a large East Indian population. The Hindu society in these two Colonies opened two organizations that offered free lodging and food for more than 250 persons each day. (Dharamsala and the Balak Sahaita Mandalee)
(c) Women's Organizations
By the 1930's the traditional narrow view of women as homemakers was beginning to change slowly but surely. A number of women were forced to become more active when the men left either for service in the World Wars or to find jobs in Latin, central and North America and Europe.
There was also the view that enough was not being done by the men to address the specific issues that women faced. In order to combat the gender discrimination that existed and its various manifestations women needed to be in place of power.
There were literally dozens of organizations that were founded and operated by women in response to the adverse social and economic conditions that they faced on a day to day basis. These organizations provided skills training for women, opportunities for education and child care among other facilities.
Here are some examples:
(i) St. Kitts - Ann Liburd was the first President of the Caribbean Women's Association. It became an umbrella group for over 500 women's organizations in the Caribbean

Ann Liburd
(ii) St. Vincent- Sarah Baptiste spearheaded the local chapter of the Girls Guide and Mothers' Union.
(iii) Jamaica - Una Marson was one of the founding members of the Jamaica Save the Children Fund. It built and operated several day care centres. The children received one hot meal per day and had a safe place to play while their parents were at work. After 1946 the organization also began to operate Basic schools. After this period also they received assistance from Canada and became known as CANJAM- Canada Jamaica Save the Children Fund.

Una Marson
(iv) Trinidad- Amy and Merle Dowers were among the founding members of the Negro Welfare and Cultural Industrial Youth Movement. The organization provided wholesome activities for the youth in an attempt to prevent juvenile delinquency. Handicraft, sports, concerts, short story competitions, the performances of plays written by Merle were some of the features of this organization.
(d) The Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA)
This dynamic organization was established by Marcus Garvey of Jamaica. It is said to have more than 30 chapters over the world. Garvey's philosophy of racial dignity and pride help to lift the masses of people. The U.N.I.A. was actively involved in health. Black Cross nurses provided health care for those who were sick. A number of nurses were trained to give services at the community health centres that were established. Garvey established a cultural centre at Edelweiss Park in Jamaica.

The Garvey Club
In 1929, Garvey founded the Peoples Political Party. It was the first political party to be started or founded by a black man in Jamaica.
Excerpts from the Party's Manifesto:
• an eight hour work day
• a minimum wage for the working class
• the passing of a law to promote and protect local industries
• a legal aid department for the poor
• technical schools for each parish
• the establishment of a Jamaican University and Polytechnic Institution
• land reform
• libraries and civic amenities for each parish
• imprisonment of judges who use the law to oppress the poor
• beautifying Kingston Race Course and making it a national park
2. In August 1929 Kingston had the honour of hosting the sixth International Convention of the UNIA.
1. The following year (1930) he started a Trade Union- The Jamaica Workers and Labourers' Association
Various aspects of social life

Festivals and Celebrations

Persons who contributed to the Festivals and Celebrations
• Amerindians, especially in Belize.
• Europeans (Spanish, French and English)
• Africans
• East Indians (especially in Trinidad and Guyana)
• Chinese
Religion also came to play an important role in the selection and practice of festivals and celebrations in the British Caribbean 1838-1938. Chief among these are
1. Christianity
2. African- Christian syncretic religions for example Orisha, Kumina and Revivalism
3. Islam (Muslim)
4. Hinduism

(a) It was not the culture of the masses that was accepted and or widely practiced in the Caribbean
(b) It was the culture of the ruling class- the dominant class that mattered and was therefore approved as appropriate by the colonial authorities, who themselves, belonged to that group or class.
(c) The dominant or ruling class viewed the cultural practices of the masses with scorn and veiled hostility.
(d) The masses faced much opposition when they tried to practice any aspect of their culture that was seen as backward and uncivilized by those who looked through the lens of a colonial upbringing.
(e) To some extent, a curious mixture of European and African festivals and celebrations did take place in the British West Indies, partly out of a ‘survival' response to the pressure and opposition and partly because of the fact that the two races were forced to co-exist on the plantations for generations!
(f) Sadly, some amount of culture erosion occurred with the increasing influence of the Americans in the Caribbean, particularly during and after their sojourn at bases here during the Second War.

Yam Festival
As its name suggests this festival is a time of thanksgiving for the yams harvested. In Jamaica in particular, a wide variety of yams were (are) planted by the enslaved people and later on by the peasantry. Examples of these are: yellow yam, white yam and soft yam.

Yam Festival Dancer
To speed up the process neighbors would get together and reap the harvest. The feasting would follow. It was not just yam that they cooked but a variety of other starchy foods which they served with ‘salt ting' such as saltfish or salt pork. A big jug or pan of ‘wash' (lemonade) would be on hand to wash down the food. The music and dancing provided a perfect atmosphere for the celebrations and thanksgiving amidst loud laughter and chatter as wishes for a good price for the yam at the market was offered as one would a toast as a wedding. It was a time of unity and fellowship. Those who were religious or cared to do so saved the best of the harvest for the Church Harvest festival.

Harvest Festival
Giving thanks for the harvest is perhaps one of the commonest festivals to be celebrated by a number of people in various cultures. The earliest occupants of the New World, the Tainos and the Mayans held harvest celebrations. Both groups would pray to the gods for a good harvest. When their prayers were answered they thought it was only fair and right that they should return thanks for the said harvest by giving an offering. This would often take the form of an offering of the best of the crops. This was the same for the other groups that would later control the region: the Spanish, French and English and to a lesser extent the Dutch.

Let us begin by stating that the Non-Conformist Churches as well as the Catholics and Anglicans or Established Churches were engaged in this practice. There was keen rivalry among the villagers to give the best of the harvest. This included those who were not even regular church goers as well as members. The Church would be decorated with a variety of flowers to transform it into a festive environment. Coconut palms were often used to form arches. These were sometimes plaited so that flowers could fit between them.
Booths, erected by the members would be used to display the variety of produce from the harvest according to its kind. Top of the list would be the ground provisions- yams of all sort, cassava, dasheen and so on. Then there was the display of an abundance of fruits such as pineapples and naseberries that were so sweet you could smell the pungent flavour from afar off. Even the livestock was on show: goats, chickens, rabbits and even pigs. Coffee, cocoa, ginger and other spices perfumed the air as well.

Yellow Yam White Yam
One cannot overlook the preparatory process. It provided another opportunity for the people of the villages to work together. For example in the pimento picking and gathering process, some of the owners organized a match to see which team would pick the most. Not there was necessarily a prize for doing so, but the ‘competition' added to the excitement and made the work seem lighter. Everyone sang as they worked with a few jokes interjected between the changing of songs.
Of course, there was eating afterwards. What else attracts a crowd more than music and food?

According to Laxim and Ajai Mansingh Holi or Phagwa is the Hindu festival of coloured waters or harvest celebration. It is however celebrated just before the harvest. Throughout the day, participants move from house to house, singing, dancing and playing their instruments. They are given sweetmeats and other food items by members of the various households that they come in contact with. At the end of the day there is a community gathering in a designated spot or place.


Divali: Festival of Lights
This festival is celebrated in October. It is one of the highlights of the Indian festive calendar. The festival of Lights celebrates the triumph of good over evil, darkness over light.

Divali Festival of Lights

According to the myth surrounding this festival, the demon Mahisha Sura, was destroyed by the goddess Lakshmi on this day. She is the goddess of prosperity and so during the festival one prays to her for all sort of prosperity: physical, material and spiritual. She is depicted as having four arms. These symbolize the extent of her ability to perform. She is standing on a lotus flower, holding a lotus in one of her back hands and a conch shell in the other.
She radiates
• Peace
• Non-violence
• Truthfulness
• Humility
• Contentment
• Control of senses
• Faith
• Endurance
• Compassion
The demon is not in the sense that Christianity teaches it but is symbolic of the inner evil forces which are destroyed by this goddess. The festival also marks the return of Lord Rama after fourteen years of exile. It is yet another victory of good triumphing over evil
Festive preparations and activities start at least a week before the festival. Before they are decorated with lights, there is much cleaning of homes, offices and farms to be done. One's property must be clean. Lights are strewn on the walls, roofs, driveways and lawns. At least one diya, that is, a clay bowl with oil and cotton wick, or an oil lamp is to be found in every room or on nay object which is connected and involved in providing a source of knowledge and income for the family. It is the lady of the home who traditionally lights the diya while the other family members chanted, prayed and gave thanks to the goddess for material and spiritual prosperity.

The business places proudly boasted their chirag- the equivalent to the diyas. On the plantations where many Hindus lived and worked, the employer gave permission to hang the lights from the banana and plantain trees. On other plantations such as cocoa plantations arches were set up. The lights were then hung from them. Household gifts are bought by everyone. This is in addition to the gifts that are exchanged among family members, friends and business associates. Of course, special dinner dishes are prepared and served. In the night prayers are performed in every home. Those who were able to do so, gathered at the home of the priest for devotional songs and dancing.
Emancipation Day Celebration

As the name suggests Emancipation celebration was held in remembrance of and thanksgiving for the emancipation of some three quarters of a million enslaved Africans in the British West Indies on August 1, 1838. That first celebration was a day of prayer and thanksgiving. Many of the emancipated Africans went to Church services as the bells rang loud and clear on that first freedom morning. The Anglican Church offered Holy Communion to those in attendance.

In the early years after Emancipation, the first of August was more important to the black population than Christmas. Of course a number of them still went to Church. What thoughts ran through their minds as in the Established Church of England the minister read from and based his sermon on the book of Philemon? This book talks about servitude or slavery among the Jews. It is the story of how Onesimus a slave ran away from his master Philemon and found Paul who is now begging his master to forgive him and to charge Paul with any expenses that Onesimus' absence may have caused. You may make your comments as to the appropriateness or poor taste of such a choice for the sermon on Emancipation Day.
Before the 1890's the celebrations tended to be more spontaneous and organized on a community basis. There would be music and dancing and of course food! There would be a week long celebration. Five nights of all night tea meetings, though the Missionaries did not like or approve of these, picnics, concerts and so on.

During the 1890's and afterwards, some members of the black and colored middle class tried to put a structure to the festivities. They suggested that different persons such as Abolitionists and Missionaries such as Knibb and Phillipo be honored. This did not receive any kind of meaningful support from the ruling class and one can understand this. After all they still bore resentment towards them for the part they played in the emancipation process. It is no secret that there was much conflict between the ruling class (plantocracy in particular) and the Non-Conformist missionaries. This continued even after Emancipation over issues such as the Free Village Movement and the exercising of the franchise by the new black landowners (peasants).
In the 20th century the idea of an essay competition was accepted. You may well imagine that this would be best supported by the literate members of the population. The masses with whom the celebration originated would not be able to even enter a competition that was organized to celebrate ‘their' event?

The winning essay argued for the involvement of the upper class in the celebrations, that there should be a service in the market place and a sports competition to follow. Clearly this was NOT the idea of the master mind behind the competition. The essay competition came to an abrupt end.

After the 1920's Emancipation took a backseat to the race for legalizing Trade Unions and Political Parties as the Caribbean journeyed on the long path to political independence. Marcus Mosiah Garvey considered Emancipation day to be a sacred day. You already know how he felt about the importance of culture to the dignity and stability of the African race.
Indeed, it was on Emancipation Day, August 1, 1914, that he launched the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA). Through the UNIA, Garvey organized street parades and dramas to mark the day. His most notable production, in my opinion, was the drama entitled Slavery - from Hut to Mansion. This performance took place at Edelweiss Park in 1930.

The Chinese and the Jews

The Chinese
Squibs and firecrackers were used to welcome the New Year and chase away the old year. The sky would light up on New Year's Day as a number of firecrackers were sent hurling in the air by excited celebrants. The Chinese sold these items along with dynamite and gunpowder at their shops. These explosive items were usually kept in large open barrels in the shops. The other races bought these from the Chinese grocery for Christmas as well as New Year‘s Day celebrations.

Modern Chinese New Year celebration
Later on, there is going to be much opposition from the upper classes about this practice. In British Guiana (Guyana) in particular, the practice is declared illegal after a shop and several other buildings and houses were completely destroyed by fire, three days before Christmas on December 22, 1913. The fire is said to have started by someone accidentally throwing a match or a lit cigarette on one of the barrel of firecrackers or was it gunpowder?

A Chinese firecracker
The Jews
The Jews New Year celebration is known as Rosh Hashanah. It is a time of self examination before God. One is expected to remain serious and solemn even though it is also acknowledged as a time for happiness and festivity. I call it the time of the 3R's: rejoicing, reflecting and resolution.

Rosh Hashanah
It is customary to eat apples and twisted loaves dipped in honey to symbolize hope for a pleasant (sweet) New Year. Greeting cards are sent to family and friends with the wish for a year of good success.

Compare this to the European upper class celebrations in the early twentieth century. They would have elaborate and expensive dinners and balls. The Myrtle Bank Hotel (Jamaica) was the place to be for many a celebrant of the upper class. Music and dance commenced at about 9:30 p.m. until midnight when the music stopped to allow the air to ring out with the musical voices of those present shouting the traditional ‘Happy New Year!!!!' and wishes for a prosperous year to all.
There were others who chose to welcome the New Year by attending Watch Night Service at the various chapels located throughout the island. As the clock struck the midnight hour, the church bells would ring, signaling the start of the New Year. I have no doubt that there would be whispers of gratitude to the Almighty for the gift of another New Year's Day.

The rest of the day would be spent either at home with friends and family watching the children play several ring games or attending one of the many bazaars that were hosted on the hotel grounds. Still there were others who preferred the excitement of the sporting activities.
Here is a list of some of the activities that were available back then. How many of them are still available on New Year's Day in this century?

• Cricket at Sabina Park- from 1892, the New Year cricket carnival was held annually under the patronage of the Governor. The Band of the West India Regiment added to the excitement and air of festivity with their delightful music.
• Rifle shooting competitions at the Norman Range in Kingston
• Horse racing at Race Course
• Football matches
• Hockey matches
• Polo matches

In Antigua, the New Year would be ushered in with feasting and merriment. There would be music, dancing, masquerading clowns and a host of festivities that were designed exclusively for the whites. In fact, the Antiguan white population credits the Scotchmen with bringing merrymaking New Year and Christmas celebration to Antigua.
Hindu Celebrations

For the Muslims, marriage is seen as a legal and social contract. A proposal from the groom's family is sent to the bride's family. If they accept the proposal, the ceremony is held at the bride's home. The groom and his party of men are seated in the front yard while the bride and the women are seated at the back.

Hindu weddings
Firstly, we must note that strict principles are applied. The entire arrangement is an elaborate affair. The ceremony is seen as the most important one for the couple and it is of course the most expensive!

Hindu wedding scene
Arranged marriages were very common and accepted as the norm. The first step is for the bride's father or uncle or brother to offer the prospective groom a silver or brass bowl with food and jewelry item in it. If the man accepts it, it is a signal that he is willing to marry the daughter (or sister or niece). So a few days later the prospective groom's family showers the girl's family with gifts only these are deposited in her lap instead of being handed to her in a bowl. The day of the marriage is determined by astrological means. Interestingly, the marriage should not be solemnized during the planting or reaping season.
On the day of the wedding the bridegroom travels to the bride's house amidst a happy dancing procession (barat) of relatives and friends. The ‘on foot' procession includes a musical band. The groom is the centerpiece of the procession. He rides on a tastefully decorated horse or car at the rear of the procession. Ceremonies are held at nights and the route to the bride's home is well lit to add to the gaiety of the event.
On arrival at the bride's home, the groom is met at the entrance and is welcomed by his mother-in-law. He stands there until his bride appears surrounded by her sisters and friends. She welcomes her husband by placing a garland around his neck. He then places one around hers and the ceremony begins. Both the bride and the groom are in traditional dress: sari and kurta. More often than not, the groom wears a turban. The bride's sari is usually red or a vibrant pink.

A woman dressed in a Silk-Sari A man dressed in a Kurta
Songs welcoming the groom are sung and the blessing of the future couple follows. The wedding ceremony is usually conducted in an open area under a specially built canopy, the posts of which have been wrapped with banana and mango leaves.
Prayer is a very important part of the ceremony. This is usually done after the giving away of the bride by the parents. The prayer area (vedi) is in the center with a fire pot, jug of water and a small plate with an oil lamp. Fire, sky, earth, water, and air are important witnesses to a Hindu wedding ceremony. We must note however, that a number of marriages in Trinidad took place in temples.
The couple walks around the fire seven times signifying the seven virtues of marriage. Three of these are: compatibility, understanding and good health. They say their vows amidst the chanting of the mantras by the priests.
The symbolic hair parting exercise is an important part of the ceremony. The husband puts powder on the hair parting of his wife while she puts powder on his forehead. The wedding necklace and toe rings are put on the bride. She is expected to wear these and the powder on her hair until she is widowed.

1. For the last half of the 19th century majority of the people in the British West Indies worked in agricultural. Many worked on sugar, coffee, cocoa and banana estates as:
• Cane cutters
• Weeders
• Coopers
• Water carriers
• Farmers
This group also includes the rising peasantry. These were small landowners who sometimes offered their labour on nearby estates. In this group also are the market sellers. Those who sell small livestock, (pigs, fowls etc.,) handicraft goods, household articles, fruits, vegetables and ground provisions produced by the peasants.
2. Shop keepers - This group swelled with the coming of the Chinese immigrants many of whom opened shops and ice cream parlours at the end of their contract.
3. Fishing
4. Cabinet makers (furniture men)
5. Craftsmen: potters, tailors, shoemakers, basket makers and carpenters
6. Professionals: lawyers, nurses, Ministers of Religion and teachers.

By the 20th century, a number of openings were created. Political and Constitutional developments meant that emerging educated class filled posts that were created. The legalization of Trade Unions, heavy investments by the United States and industrialization also created a wider variety of jobs for the common man.
a. The Upper Class filled posts such as surveying, Civil Service, army, journalism, banking and the commercial sector.
b. Factory workers
c. Pharmacists
d. Driver
Women and Family Life

Middle Class women worked as secretaries, post mistresses and so on.
Lower Class women were: washer women, nannies, midwives.
Upper Class women did not work. They prepared tea parties and formal gatherings. They were seen as trophy wives. Their leisure activities consisted of embroidery and crotchet. Some were involved in art.

Family Life

• Majority of the families of the lower class were based on "Common-Law" relationships. As a result there was a great number of illegitimate children- Born out of wedlock. A scornful term applied to them is Bastards
• Some of them got married when they became Christians since the Church did not approve of partners living together without getting married. In most instances this was after they had children. The blacks did not like to get married if they could not afford to invite a large crowd and have plenty food.
• Single Parent households were also very common. In most instances it was the woman who was left behind to look after the children. In the 1920's, 30's and 40's the men left to fight in the World Wars, work in Central America, the United States and Canada and England.
• In the slums and ghettos of the overcrowded town areas where the lower classes lived in tenement yards like one big family. This had a negative aspect to it where frequent quarrels broke out and competition was rife.
• Among the lower class, a number of fathers had children with several different women. The women had several children for different fathers.
• Women bore the brunt of domestic responsibilities
• Nuclear: Most of the nuclear families were of upper class
• The extended family African tradition was retained. A number of children were raised jointly by parents and grandparents and even uncles and aunts living with them.
• Large families- many children born to mothers of lower class especially Africans, Indians and to a lesser extent Chinese
• The men were the main income earners "bread winners" in the upper and middle class. In the lower class the women were forced to work outside of the homes especially after the 1930s.
• Older siblings were responsible for younger ones.
• Upper Class women were seen as "home makers". This is ironic since the maids tend to take care of the children of the Upper class women.
Living Conditions

Poor living conditions persisted into the 20th century. In the town areas, the majority of the housing facilities for the masses could best be described as overcrowded unhygienic tenement yards. They were poorly constructed hovels without much inside plumbing. The tenants shared one standpipe in the yard. From this they collected water for washing and cooking. There was one central bathroom. It was often divided in two, one part was the shower and the other compartment was the toilet.
The roofs were often made from corrugated and even rusty zinc. They leaked when it rained because the landlord's emphasis was not on repairs but collection of rent. Because the demand for housing was so high, a number of persons were afraid to complain too loudly. The landlord's would merely give them notice and rent the place to someone else forcing them to find another place. This was not an easy task especially if you had children.

In the rural areas most of the houses were constructed by the owner with the help of other villages. A number of persons inherited land from their families who had acquired it through the free village movement the century before. It would not be uncommon to see thatch houses, nor outside bathroom and kitchen as described in the health conditions. Many of the houses were made of bamboo walls and or wattle and daub. (mud) They usually had dirt floors. The houses usually had a large room which was called the hall (living room). The verandah was a must. It afforded one the pleasure of looking out on the horizon and calling to one's neighbor.

A shanty town in Jamaica
In British Guiana and Trinidad a large majority of the population were descendants of immigrants. They still lived in the long unsanitary barracks that were provided for them as part of their contract.
Art Forms

(a) Jamaica and Trinidad were the two British Caribbean territories that were most engaged in visual art. Edna Manley, wife of Jamaica's most eminent politician was a professional artist. Most of the Caribbean art that was on show copied European themes. This is understandable since the majority of their patrons were whites- creoles. Those who were interested in local art were usually self -taught and therefore not recognized by society. By the 1930's the picture began to change. Marcus Garvey philosophies and teachings gave great impetus to local artists. Edna Manley was instrumental in this. She did sculptor and paintings of Rastafarians, market sellers (Negroes and lower class!)

Eve by Edna Manley
The Institute of Jamaica encourages local art exhibition in the 1930's. by 1940, there was an exhibition of all Jamaican paintings. By 1950, the Jamaica School of Art was established and artists such as Mallica "Kapo" Reynolds a Rastafarian spearheaded a group of artists who emphasized African heritage as their theme.
Trinidad's native art movement also began in the 1930's. In 1943, the Trinidad Art Society was created and the following year (1944) they hosted their first Annual Art Exhibition. While Jamaica forged ahead with paintings and sculpturing of local themes Trinidad seemed to focus on abstract themes.? In 1962, Trinidad's National Museum and Art Gallery was founded.

Performing Arts
Beryl McBurnie and the Trinidadian dancers. The NDTC movement in Jamaica.
1. Ward Theatre National Pantomime: By the 1950's people from all walks of life in Jamaica were attending the Pantomimes. The themes moved from early British favorites such as Jack and the Beanstalk (1941), Sleeping Beauty and Pandora's Box to Anansi, Carib Gold (1960) and Banana Boy (1961). Phenomenal roles were played by (Mas Ran) Randolph Williams and (Ms. Lou) Louise Bennett Coverly.
2. Natives were writing their own plays. The play: Bluebeard and Brer Anancy (1949) was written by Louise Bennett and Noel Vaz.

(b) Architecture??
Caribbean architecture was imported by the different colonial masters that ruled the region: Spanish, British, French and Dutch.Spanish architecture is best seen in the cathedrals and forts that are left behind. They used stained windows, solid stones and arches. The stone pillars indicate that they copied from the Greek and Roman styles. ?

Spanish architecture in Puerto Rico
British architecture is best seen in the remnants of the Great Houses and forts that are in the territories. Jamaica is famous for Devon House and Rose Hall while St. Kitts is famous for Brimstone House. The houses were usually three stories high. Built of stone with huge rooms and curving connecting staircases. They usually have a verandah or porch. They are built to withstand hurricanes and the tropical weather.

Devon House Kingston Jamaica
In the islands that were at some point controlled by the French: Grenada, St. Lucia and Dominica: we see evidence of French influence especially in the roofs which are usually made from fish scale tiles. Architecture in the Caribbean, though imported from Europe takes into consideration the climatic conditions of the region. Hence the houses are built with a lot of windows to let out the heat and hopefully attract the breezes. The wooded windows are latticed or criss crossed and open outwards. ??
They are also built to withstand hurricanes and earthquakes as much as possible. Later on when iron and steel building material became available these were also used. In addition local material is often used. Belize and Jamaica are famous for their hardwood which was used for both flooring and supporting posts.?

A lot of the activities were seen as the exclusive domain of the ruling class. It is not until the 20th century that some of the barriers were removed.
The upper class engaged in:
• Grand balls
• Visiting theatrical groups
• Swimming (going to beach)
• Hunting and bird shooting
• Horse racing, betting and gambling (1906)
• Hotel entertainment- especially at New Year when they host balls.
• Reading
• Sports: golf (1930's) Lawn tennis, cricket and Yachting

The lower class engaged in
• Ring games
• Work games
• Tea leaf meeting
• Dances
• Cricket - they played amongst themselves with bats and balls that they made. This was usually done in an open space in the community commonly known as the ‘ball ground'.

The Churches provided the following means of recreation:
(i) Camps
(ii) Retreats
(iii) Outings
(iv) Picnics
(v) Concerts
(vi) Sporting Competitions
(vii) Clubs such as Girls Guide, Boys Brigade and Brownies


• Cricket was very important at the primary/elementary level in the schools in the 1930's. In many schools throughout the West Indies the boys not girls, represented their schools at matches against other schools.
• West Indian colonies began playing cricket matches from as early as the 1890's. You already know that at that early stage there was a colour bar on for the all of the exclusive cricket (sporting) clubs that were in operation at that time. By the 1920's things began to change.
• The West Indies cricket Board (WICB) was granted test status in 1928. The first test match was played at Lord's in England.
• Even though the whites dominated the side there a few blacks or coloureds on this team. Learie Constantine was one of them. The Trinidadian was among the first to break the colour barrier. He debuted in this historic test match of 1928.

Learie Constantine at the crease
• He was soon joined in the 1930's by the Jamaican (Panamanian born) George Headley. The West Indies won the series against England in 1934-1935. He went on to become of the first black man to captain the West Indies team in 1947 -1948.
• By the 1940's there came the famous Barbadians- the three W's (Clyde) Walcott, (Everton) Weekes and (Frank)Worrell. Weekes' test record of five centuries in consecutive innings must have caused a few whites and blacks to jump together in true West Indies style. It helped to erase some of the prejudices that whites tended to have against non-whites.
• By the 1950's, a number of players of Indian descent joined the team. Among them were Sonny Ramadhin and Rohan Kanhai. The great Garfield Sobers also debuted at age 17 in 1954. The West Indies won the Test Match against England at Lord's in the 1950's.
• They played and won Pakistan in JAMAICA in 1958. At this match, Sobers made his historic 365 not out.
• The Calypsonians could not let the moment pass without ensuring that it entered the annals of our history. Men such as Lord Beginner and Lord Kitchener recorded songs such as cricket, lovely cricket. You know the power of music in uniting people everywhere.
• The colonial experience was meant to teach us that nothing good comes from the colonies. It comes from overseas. It wanted to teach us that we were inferior and the Mother Country superior. Some of us choose not to learn that lesson but rather to defy it. This is where our cricketers come in.
• The lower classes were not allowed membership in the exclusive cricket clubs. They played cricket among themselves with bats and balls that they made themselves. They would not have been able to afford the gears, bats and balls that the professionals and elites used.
Classroom Practices

The society was one that believed in force as a way of controlling the masses. Corporal Punishment was therefore used in schools. Students were beaten with whips, belts and even bamboo sticks. The main teaching method was repetition or route learning where the students continuously repeat what the teacher says until the teacher is satisfied that the students have committed the information to memory. The teachers spoke in English. Except for the student teachers, the others could not be understood because of their thick accent. The children did not understand everything that was said.
The main subjects that were taught at the primary level were known as the Three R's, they are: Reading, Writing and Arithmetic. The same problems were experienced in reading classes. The words were strange to the students. When they went back home everyone around them spoke broken English or patois. They did not have any opportunity to practice.

Many of the schools were operated by various religious bodies such as the Baptists, Moravians, Anglicans and Catholics. They placed emphasis on Religious Education and indoctrination. The students were not allowed to talk out of turn. In most instances they did not ask questions. This helped to stifle learning.
The curriculum was of no relevance to their culture. Textbooks were imported from England and later from the United States. They contained material, phrases and images that were foreign to the average Caribbean child. For example, snow, reindeer, xylophone and Rumpelstiltskin.
Gender Discrimination - Boys were paid more attention than girls.
Why and How did the Festivals Survive?

This week we discuss the reasons these festivals survived despite the difficulties and obstacles faced by the organizers and participants. Let's go!
1. 416,000 Indian and some 20,000 Chinese immigrants came to the Caribbean by 1917 to join the over 700,000 ex-slaves. Enough of them were committed to the preservation of their cultures. They had a desire to see it continue and be passed down to their children and the future generations.
2. Imagine that you are in a strange land, thousands of miles away from home, it would be quite natural for you to gravitate towards customs and practices and people that you are familiar with rather than those of the new place that you are in.
3. The festivals helped them to maintain their sense of identity. For many this was important in the maintenance of their sanity, especially in those times when they became homesick and lonely.
4. Social life on the plantations and in the colonies was restrictive to say the least. There were not many provisions if any for the recreational aspect of the masses. The elite did not care about them at all. How boring it must have been! You can then well imagine how they welcomed every opportunity to participate in such enjoyment and pleasurable activities.
5. They worked on the estates for up to nine hours per day. The rigorous labor required of them left them with little energy each day. Some of the festivals were held on weekends and provided a big escape from the usual drudgery of plantation life and work.
6. They were able to meet people of similar faith and culture. Friendships were formed which in some instances led to marriage.
7. They had the necessary items needed to practice the festival. What was lacking or not available in the Caribbean, they could either improvise or simply do without.
8. Some of the festivals were not expensive or required much time and effort. For example, the Harvest festival- all a farmer had to do was to choose and present the best of his crop or animal to the person in charge.
9. A number of persons were usually involved in the organization and implementing stages of the festivals. This made people more willing to co-operate since the burden would not be left on any one person or individual family.
10. It gave one a sense of pride and self worth to be able to contribute and participate in one's own religious festivals.
11. Participating in the Holi and Divali festivals had material as well as spiritual benefits that could not be bought. Eid -ul-Fitr the Islam festival that celebrates the end of a month of fasting (Ramadan) presents the Muslims with a great opportunity to do alms giving which is a very important pillar of their beliefs.
12. There were leaders who were available to conduct the exercises such as the Muslim imam. The support and sponsorship of the Churches and private individuals were crucial. Men of influence and purpose such as our great hero, Marcus Garvey injected life, creativity and vitality in the celebrations thereby attracting a large group of people.

13. It also provided an important link for the parents who sent their young children to participate in the festivals. Children who were active in the Choirs or plays would certainly be more favored to receive any opportunities for position that may arise. Where the Church has influence, they would certainly recommend such a child or young person.
14. The ruling class did not accept the masses of the people as their equal. As a result they were excluded form various recreational activities and clubs that were owned and operated by them. This meant that they had to find their own means of entertainment.
15. In some instances the festivals were held in proximity to the masses but out of the ‘circle' and reach of the upper class that did not approve of them.
16. The rum drinking aspect and noisy festivity attracted those poor Hindu laborers and villagers who were a sort of outcasts to their own people.
he Difficulties and Challenges in Practising Festivals

Difficulties and obstacles faced by the organizers and participants in their attempts to practice these festivals.
1. As more and more persons became converted to Christianity the number of Indians in particular who were willing to participate in the festival dwindled. This was because of the Christian leaders' condemnation of some of these festivals which they saw as wrong. As a result the organizers lost the financial support of some of its most faithful supporters.
2. Wages were kept deliberately low. Some of the festivals required funding such as the tazias building and the gift giving. This prevented some of those who would have wished to participate from becoming involved.

A Tazia
3. There are particular cases to consider. For example the 1860's was a difficult time for the entire Caribbean. It all started with the American Civil War (1861). There was a massive increase in the price of imported foodstuff. Flour, a main meal item for the masses rose by eight three per cent! (83%) The cost of living rose by sixty per cent (60%). In order to cushion the blow for themselves, the authorities imposed heavy and new taxation on the masses. For example, carts were previously untaxed but after 1864 the owners (who are obviously those of the poorer class) were required to pay eighteen shillings per year on their carts! You can well understand how, in the context of low wages, this would result in their inability to buy gifts for festivals or sponsor tazia building and so on.
4. The Caribbean region is prone to droughts and hurricanes. 1862 and 1863 saw a series of droughts throughout the region. This was followed by heavy rains the next year. The result? Flooding and destruction of crops, roads bridges etc., You can well imagine that the harvest festival would either have to be postponed or cancelled for that year.
5. Each successive generation became less and less interested in the culture and practices of their forefathers. This was partly because they spent more and more time at school. As they became more and more educated and exposed to other cultures they became more and more integrated, they made friends with children from other races and did not want to be seen or stand out as different.
6. In some instances potential leaders of the ceremony and men of influence became more involved in the formation and fight to legalize Trade Unions (1930's) and their political careers or aspirations for political office in the 1950's and 1960's when Constitutional changes were taking place in the British Caribbean and a number of coveted posts were made available.
7. The upper class opposed these cultures. The rowdy behaviour, the rum drinking and the loud music were seen as barbaric and uncivilized. They made no attempt to understand the new cultures that were injected into the society instead they reacted with scorn and derision. For example in 1884 the Governor of Trinidad passed a law, placing certain restrictions on the Taziya procession. A Proclamation was issued to the East Indians of Naparima, (Trinidad) notifying them that they would NOT be allowed to pass through San Fernando.
8. Those members of the lower classes who managed to send their children to schools desired for them a better way of life. Very often this ‘better way of life' meant aspiring to the values and traditions of the upper class.
9. The Americanization of the Caribbean led to a lot of culture erosion. This was especially so after the American soldiers spent some six years in the Caribbean on the different bases. Persons became more attracted to the American culture- the rock and roll music, the seductive moves of Elvis ‘the pelvis' Presley and certainly after the late 1950's for those who could afford it television became the centre of attraction not festivals and celebrations! A number of persons lost their taste for ‘those things'.
Christianity and the Region

How did the religions of the region influence social life?

1. The Christian Churches taught the following about gender:
(i) The men were superior to the women
(ii) The man was the head of the household
(iii) The women were to stay at the home and take care of the children and home life while the men worked
(iv) Church men were given leadership positions; e.g. Local preachers, Deacons, Priests

2. They provided recreational and educational facilities
3. They did valuable charity work such as operating soup kitchens and day care for desperate mothers.
4. They conducted informal adoptions. Some of the Missionaries themselves adopted and took care of orphaned or less advantaged children. They operated Boys and Girls Homes.
5. They provided a wide range of occupation for lower class people, allowing them a measure of social mobility: clergy men, deacons, watchmen of the church grounds and caretakers.
6. Health Practices: The Church taught that "cleanliness is next to godliness". Members were therefore encouraged to practices good hygiene.
Diet: some denominations such as Seventh Day Adventists taught their followers to abstain from eating certain foods such as pork and beef. They had a vegetarian diet.
7. Conflict: in the early period (1838-1850) the blacks experienced much discrimination when they tried to worship in the Christian churches such as the Anglican and the Catholic churches. They were required to sit at the back. The services were conducted partly in English and partly in Latin. They did not understand much. The way it was conducted was outside of their culture and experience. They were not asked to do much. They found the exercise quite boring.
Hinduism and the Region

How did the religions of the region influence social life?
The East Indian immigrants introduced this new religion to the region. It was different because of its doctrines and practices. First of all, the Hindus were polytheistic. That is they believed in many gods whereas Christians believe in One God. To make matters worst these gods were represented by images of animals. There was one god who was an elephant and another was part monkey. This was ridiculous if not sacrilegious to the Christians and those of the African religions.
They also believed in reincarnation and animism that is that all things have life. The Vedas was their scripture. It is these beliefs and practices that gave the immigrants the hope and strength that they needed to endure the harsh conditions that they faced on the estates in particular and in the Caribbean society in general. They buried their dead on a pyre. The Africans thought this was disrespectful.
They met to worship and formed important links and friendships. Some met their partners and got married.
But there was also another feature of their religion that sparked some positive connection with the masses. Their food and spices were adopted by a number of people.
Islam and the Region

How did the religions of the region influence social life?
Some Africans were Muslims but they had to abandon this when they were forcibly transported to the West Indies. This religion revived with the introduction of the East Indian immigrants.
The central figure of this religion is the Prophet: Mohammed. Muslims believe in one God. His name is Allah. There were five important pillars which each Muslim had to practice on a daily basis. They had to pray three times a day at particular hours facing Mecca. The masses felt that this was too demanding. It would not fit in with the strenuous workload that they had to carry.
Gender Relations
The man of the house had ultimate power in house matters and decision making. Women were not allowed to be educated. Fathers sent sons but not daughters to school. At the mosque or masjid, the men sat together at the front while the women huddled together at the back.

Family Life
Men were the head of the house hold Women were home makers. They stayed home and raised the children. Boys were considered more important than girls and were generally privileged. Both Hindus and Muslims practiced arranged Marriages and got married at an early age. Most women did not leave their home without a veil covering their hair and sometimes a robe covering their clothing. They were teased for their dress and beliefs.
Muhammed Khan came to Jamaica in 1915 and built Masjid Ar-rahman in Spanish Town (1957) Masjid Hussein (another organization) was built in Westmoreland. British Guiana and Trinidad had the largest Muslim population and number of Mosques since they received the most East Indians in the migrants during the period of slavery.

The Mosque in Port of Spain, Trinidad, Trinidad and Tobago
The festivals were most commonly practiced in Trinidad and Guyana. The two most known festivals are Ramadan and Hosein. A number of the lower classes found the thrill, color and pageantry of Hosein very attractive and they would actually join the processions.
Ramadan is the 9th month of the Islamic lunar Calendar. During this month Muslims all over the world abstained from food drink and pleasure. Young children, elderly, chronically ill and the pregnant were exempted. This was conducted in order to purify the soul and reconnect with God. This was something that African men felt they definitely could not manage!
Name calling: some were scorned due to the fact that some blacks were Muslim. They were ridiculed by other religions because of the five pillars (praying five times a day)
African Religions

Orisha is a religion of the Yoruba people of West Africa. This is a monotheistic religion. They believe in one supreme being who communicates with his followers through emissaries called Orishas. Participants sing until they fall into a trance and are possessed by the spirits. In Trinidad, the shango religion is believed to be derived from the Orisha. They share the same rituals and practices, except that their god is the god of thunder and lightning (shango). It also has a mixture of Catholicism with the Baptist faith.

Map showing Yoruba

Yoruba people
They also believe in spirit possession. Their dress is distinctive. They wear robes of either white, blue and or red. Their heads are wrapped. Some even wear a pair of scissors in their hair. Men are often seen with a pencil behind their ears. They see themselves as messengers of God. They give this message in public places where they are sure to be heard. Many claim that they can ‘read' a person. That means that they can look at a total stranger and tell what is happening in their life. Women play a leading role in this religion. They are known as ‘mother'.
Their place of worship often has a basin or bottles of water at the altar. Some carry a flag or flags of red, blue to identify it as a sacred place. Music and dance are important to the ceremony. They do not sing traditional English or American hymns used in the traditional Christian churches. Someone ‘tracks' the song, that is they say the words mostly from memory and the others sing after them. Their drums have a distinctive beat. Men and women dance and gyrate as they are ‘possessed' by the spirit. Some even ‘turn around in circles' or are spun by others. This is known as ‘turn your roll'.
This religion is seen as a cult by Christian community. They do not mix with them. Some people are afraid of them because they believe that they are actually mixing with evil (demons).

Spiritual Baptists

Practices: They believed in communicating with departed spirits and that they briefly inhabit the bodies of the faithful. The purpose of this is so that the ancestors could share their wisdom. Songs were often sung during rituals. Some did chanting.

The Rastafarian movement began in Jamaica in the 1940's. It began as a rebel movement against the oppression and exploitation of colonialism. Rastas reject European social standards. They see whites as oppressors, the ones who introduced slavery to the Caribbean. They were the ones who dragged their forefathers across a continent and enslaved them. After slavery whites remained the rulers and continued their oppression and exploitation of the black race.
Its founder Leonard Howell was an ardent supporter of Garvey and his philosophies and program. He was especially attracted to the teachings regarding Africa being the homeland of all Africans, the back to Africa movement and the idea of blacks worshipping a black divine being. They also preached racial pride and dignity.

Leonard Howell
They proclaimed Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia as god. The fact that he is from the lineage of David and was crowned with the title king of kings and lords of lords seemed to confirm Garvey's prophecy that Africans should look for a black god. According to Rastafarians this fits in also with prophecies from the Bible.

Emperor Haile Selassie
They follow a strict code of conduct with regards to diet and dress. They do not eat pork. They consider the pig to be an unclean animal. They are mostly vegetarians. A few eat fish. They eat strictly ital, which means that their food is cooked or prepared without salt. They believe that all herbs and trees are given for food and healing. They constructed their own language. They greet each other with the term ‘blessed love'. They refer to themselves as I and I. the word ‘irie' is originally theirs.
They dress in the colors of Marcus Garvey: red, green and gold. They are fully clad from head to toe and usually wear sandals that they make. They sport a dreadlock which means that they wear their hair matted and uncombed. They are supposed to look fierce and lion like. Members of the upper class in particular began to spread propaganda against the Rastafarians claiming that they were untidy and even smelly.

Lion of Judah
They engaged in growing provisions, corn, cassava, yam and fruits and vegetables: chiefly for their own use. They also made brooms, mats and other craft items which they sell for a living. They are famous also for their music. The beating of drums and the chanting of their god's name: Jah Rastafari accompanied by the titles, ever living, ever faithful and ever sure scared quite a few children. They smoked ganja as part of their religious rituals. Their pipes which they also made were called chalice.
They were ostracized by the society in general. The Christian community found their doctrines blasphemous. The colonial authorities saw them as dangerous. They were heavily persecuted and hunted down like common criminals. On the orders of those in charge, police raided their settlements, beat the men and carried them off to jail frequently on the charge of being disorderly.

It is no wonder then that the Rastafarians called the police Babylon. This term is also loosely applied to anything that the white man is said to have created or is a part of. This includes the King James Version of the Bible. The Rastafarians use the Maccabees version instead. They read and study their Bible in depth.
The parents of upper and middle class children feared for their daughters and sons. They feared that their daughters would fall in love with a Rasta and be carried off into the hills to become his queen and have his children. Rastas do not believe in the sacrament of marriage. They believe that once you take a woman unto yourself and call her queen that's it. They do NOT believe in contraception either. They see it as a plot to ‘kill out black people'.

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Attitudes to Labor

The newly emancipated people also had some adjusting to do:
1. They had to find their own food, clothing and shelter. They could either make arrangements with their former owner or establish independent settlements. Where possible, they much preferred the latter.
2. They had to learn and exercise the rules governing bargaining of labor
3. They had to address the issue of education, health as well as their legal and political rights. Needless to say the colonial authorities were not in a hurry to include them in the political process or to change the laws to reflect their new status. As Governor Harris of Trinidad noted: " a race has been freed but a society has not been formed."
4. The planters shifted the burden of taxation to the newly emancipated people.

Measures adopted to solve the problems of the British West Indian sugar economy:
Since labour was the major issue facing the industry, a series of immigrant labour schemes were tried from 1838- 1845. The groups that were brought to the region were: European, African, Madeiran,Chinese and Indians.Indian indentured labourers proved to be the
most successful immigrant group from 1845 and were a cheap source of labour.
Steam mills replaced animal mills from as early as 1852 in Trinidad and British Guiana. Smaller colonies used smaller steam engines. New equipment was installed, such as vacuum pans (allowed sugar to be boiled at lower temperature, lessening the chance of
destroying sugar crystals by overheating) and the centrifugal driers (separated molasses from sugar). These aided in the speeding up of production and an improvement in yield of estates (as much as 25% more cane juice being extracted). Also, these saved cost of the
long curing process and stopped wasteful usage on the journey to Europe. This helped British colonies remain on par technologically with other competitors.

Smaller estates were joined together to form larger ones. This allowed for more efficient use of factory equipment and generally better management of estates.It also meant that labour was more readily available and estates could share more marketing facilities. More land was available for cultivation so therefore the most fertile areas were cultivated. A large estate was more likely to get loans could then be divided and given to individual planters. Amalgamation aided in the getting loans and in making maximum use of land, labour and other facilities. It also, gave smaller planters and planters who were in debt to continue in the industry. Profits of course, was also divided among the different planters.
NOTE: Machinery and amalgamations helped some colonies especially Trinidad and British Guiana. It also, aided in the colonies coping with the effects of the Sugar Duties Equalization Act. However, the main reason for the rise in production was the low paid work and poor conditions of immigrant labourers.

Attempts were made to improve the varieties of cane so that cane would have higher sucrose (sugar content).

New techniques were developed on the fields and included the use of the following:
The plough, harrow, wheelbarrows and weeding machines, different types of fertilizers (Peruvian guano),irrigation schemes and proper drainage systems. These were aimed at improving the speed preparation of the land and production.

Some planters turned to the USA to export their sugar. As the USA is relativelyclose to the West Indies, transport costs were lower and prices were better than when supplying sugar to Britain, for example.

Many colonial governments employed skilled engineers to give advice to planters ,for example on new types of manufacturing techniques which could save cost. Departments of agriculture were established by some governments. These gave advice to sugar
cane farmers and offered technical assistance and financial advice on increasing production. These government departments also conducted research on new types of crops.
These measures, were adopted in different degrees according to the size and wealth of the colony and what individual planters could afford.


Effects of Immigration on the Sugar Industry

1. There was an increase in the supply of labor. Their coming definitely solved the labor shortage problem.
2. There was a decrease in the wages offered to workers on the estates. This helped to cut the cost of production dramatically since wages was two thirds of the cost of production.

4. Sugar production increased particularly in Trinidad and British Guiana.

5. A number of immigrants remained and worked on the estates after their contract expired. They did both skilled and unskilled jobs.

6. It is said that the Indian immigrants encouraged the use of mechanization

Social Contribution of Immigrants

1. New races were introduced. This resulted in a permanent change in the social composition of the colonies.
2. Sexual relationships between the Asian immigrants (Chinese and East Indians) and the Negroes resulted in a further mixing of the races. In Trinidad and British Guiana, a person of such mixed descent was termed a ‘doogla.'
3. The introduction of a new language. Though the masses never really learnt the Chinese or Hindu language, one could enter a Chinese shop and hear the Chinese language as they communicated with each other.
4. Islam was not new to the Western Hemisphere but the coming of the immigrants expanded the membership and presence of this religion. In addition Hinduism was introduced.
5. New festivals were introduced. Some of these are Divali, Hosein and Holi. The masses were attracted by the food and the color. Some of them joined the various processions.


6. The Chinese opened restaurants and ice cream parlors adding to the variety of recreational activities that the masses could enjoy.
7. In Trinidad, the number of schools increased as particular schools were built for the children of East Indian immigrants. These were known as ward schools.
8. New foods were introduced. This includes the now famous curry seasoning, roti and a host of Chinese dishes.
9. The Chinese and Indians made the eating of rice popular.

Despite the positive contributions of these new groups of people there were a few negative effects of their coming. They themselves had a difficult time adjusting to life in the Caribbean. They came from the east, different culture and different languages. They arrived in a society that was largely controlled by the white plantocracy.
The ruling class was very prejudiced. They practiced open racial discrimination. They considered themselves superior to every other race and class. As a result the newcomers faced basically the same kind of treatment that the blacks received:
• Restriction of movements made them feel trapped and enslaved on the estates.
• Planters underpaid them. In some cases they owed them for long periods. Some never bothered to pay the arrears at all.
• Partiality of the courts in favor of the whites
• Physical and verbal abuse on and off the estates. The East Indians in particular were called some unkind names. The fact that they tend to stick to their races only did not help the tension between the races at all.
• Tropical diseases were a serious challenge
• The planters did not provide adequate food or medical care. The housing conditions were unsanitary.
• Some of the Indians were from the lower caste or the untouchables. Those immigrants who were from a higher caste kept the caste system and did not mix with them. A number of them dealt with their loneliness by becoming drunkards.
Assess the impact of the free village movement on the English speaking Caribbean

The Role of Churches in Establishing Free Villages

The Non-Conformist Missionaries played a crucial role in helping the ex-slaves to form Free Villages. They either acted as bargaining agents for them, getting a ‘fair' price for the land and or accessing loans from their headquarters Church in England.
They bought large tracts of land, subdivided it and sold it in small plots to those who wanted it. Jamaica had a number of Free Villages that were formed this way. Most of them either bore the name of Abolitionists or places in the Bible or Christian traits, for examples: Clarksonville after Thomas Clarkson, Bethanyand Harmony.

A poster proclaiming outrage at Abolitionists (from the American struggle against slavery)
These Missionary established Free Villages each had a Church at the center of its operations. During the week the Church building was used for school and even a day care center. Some offered evening classes to working adults. From this early the British government decided to allow the Non Conformist missionaries to provide elementary education to the masses. They were given a small sum of money to help them.
In British Guiana, the ex-slaves pooled their resources and bought entire estates through a co-operative venture. They then subdivided the land and each person received their share according to the money they had out in.
Assessing the Effects of These Settlements on the Labor Market

(a) Firstly it gave the homeowners a greater level of independence. They could ‘hold out' until the planter made a better offer.
(b) They could not be threatened with eviction from the estates hut anymore. This meant that planter control over labor was severely weakened.

(c) It tended to help to keep the wage level high.

(d) This meant that once again the planters were faced with a big wage bill. The cost of production was still high.

(e) Some females became homemakers. They preferred to stay at home or do jobs from home such as washing and sewing rather than work on the plantations. From the days of slavery women represented a significant percentage of the field workers. This was a serious blow to the plantations.

(f) In some cases the effect was positive. Freedmen who lived in villages close to estates tended to work on the estates even if it was only part time. Others worked at planting and reaping season. These were the times when the planter needed to have a large and sure supply of labor.
The Peasantry

The conditions or factors that gave birth to the Peasantry are similar to those for the Free Villages.
To begin with each of these villages was a socio-economic unit that is the land was used for both housing and farming. Each person was sure to have even a garden plot. That was their traditional way of providing food and extras for themselves from the days of slavery.
When we speak of the peasants, we are speaking about that group of people who owned (small) plots of land from which they earned a livelihood.
(a) Much of the land was bought through the Free Village movement
(b) The freed people had the skill of producing and marketing ground provisions and other crops for sale.
(c) There was an even larger market than during slavery. Now that the entire population was free it was a certainty that the demand for foodstuffs and articles would increase.
(d) It was seen as a way to earn additional income
(e) It was a sure way to feed the many mouths of a large family.
(f) The more peasants became successful and independent the more the movement spread.

The planters reacted just as negatively to the Peasantry as they did to the Free Village movement. The acquisition of land by the blacks threatened their ‘exclusive' ownership of land. They were worried that the blacks would become eligible for voting rights and that worse yet they may want to feel themselves equal with them. The ruling class jealously guarded their class. They placed a number of obstacles in the way of the emerging peasantry.
Problems of the Peasantry

• First of all they were charged high prices for what was more often than not, hilly and or infertile land in remote areas.
• They had problem obtaining proper titles for their land. They were often told that the land was not officially surveyed. What did this mean to an illiterate peasant? The spiteful planters were trying to prevent the peasants from exercising their right to vote. The right to vote was extended to persons with a certain amount of property.
• The colonial authorities refused to allocate government funds to fix or construct roads in the remote areas

A Peasant hut

• The peasants had a hard time getting their produce to the market
• The colonial legislatures charged high land tax on the small holdings of the peasants
• They further transferred the tax burden to them by charging more tax for a donkey (cart) than a horse!
• They suffered from praedial larceny.
• Then were the acts of nature: hurricane, droughts and all sorts of plant diseases
• Later on they received stiff competition or unfair prices from large companies such as the United States Boston Fruit Company
• They often lacked the money to buy and replace fertilizers, small equipment and tools such as machetes and hoes.
• They received no help from the local authorities or the Mother Country. In fact they were indifferent to their plight. They clung conveniently to the stereotype of the blacks as lazy.

Crown Colony Government 1866-1898

A number of persons were satisfied or encouraged by the improvements made by the new Crown Colony government. Measures such as:

1. Public works on roads, bridges and drains

2. Improvement in postal services

3. Building of more schools

4. Health campaigns

5. More effective police force

The majority however was concerned that the political changes were very shallow. The white minority was still in control. The elected representatives were in the minority. There were still too many people from the mother Country who controlled the machinery of government. They were often indifferent to the specific needs of a colonial society.

The majority still did not have a say in the governing of the country. They could not vote and neither were they eligible for positions in the government yet they were required to pay taxes. The emerging middle class was totally unsatisfied. Some of them had acquired higher education. They had expected to play a more significant role. They wanted changes in the constitution not just more schools or new roads.

Nationalists felt that there was too much dependency on the Mother Country for the financing of projects. This meant that they had to budget according to whatever funding they received. There needed to be much more opportunities for employment in order to alleviate the stress and poverty that was being experienced by so many.

They argued that there needed to be answers from within the country and the region. As a region they needed to begin steps towards independence. It is against this background that some British territories were assimilated- joined together by the end of the 19th century.

1. St. Kitts and Nevis. (1882) Anguilla was added the following year 1883.

2. Antigua and Barbuda. The latter was annexed by An Order-in-Council of August 1, 1860.

3. Trinidad and Tobago. In 1889 Tobago was brought under authority of the Governor of Trinidad.

4. Jamaica and British Honduras (Belize). In 1862, the colony of British Honduras was placed under the administration of a Lieutenant Governor who was under the authority of the Governor of Jamaica. This relationship did not last long however as some twenty two years later (1884) British Honduras became a separate colony with its own Government.

5. By an Act of 1863, Cayman was placed under the authority of Jamaica's Legislature. By another Act of 1873, the Turks and Caicos Islands were also placed under Jamaica's care.

The Leeward Islands Federation (1871)

This could be called the brainchild of Governor Benjamin Pine. There were six (6) member countries, (called presidencies)

St. Kitts
The British Virgin Islands

Each member country had two representatives. The membership decreases in 1882 when St. Kitts becomes joined to Nevis. In 1940, Dominica was transferred to the Windward Islands further decreasing the number of council members.

The council of the Leeward Islands Federation allowed for the creation of two councils

1. A Federal Executive- an advisory body to the Governor.

2. A General Legislative. This was compromised of federal officials nominated by the Governor and unofficial members from each Presidency. Members served for a three year period.

The council could legislate in conjunction with the Presidential Legislative Council on matters such as:

Prisons and asylums
Police force
Auditing of public accounts
Post and telegraph
One important note was the fact that the matter of the U.S. bases was transferred from the Presidential Legislative council to this body. The Leeward Islands Federation was quite ‘successful' in the context of its lifespan 85 years. It was superseded by the West Indies Federation.
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