How Britain Underdeveloped the West Indies (with Apologies to Walter Rodney)
CLR James Journal, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp. 168-189, Fall 2010
11 Pages Posted: 19 Jan 2013
Date Written: October 1, 2010
Britain's colonial adventures in the West Indies lasted almost five centuries. "Slavery...and the overarching experience of colonialism," as De Barros, et al (2006, xi) write, "have in many ways defined the...Caribbean." Similarly, as Thompson (1997: 11) described, the Caribbean is "the most thoroughly colonized area in the world." This raises at least two interesting questions: (a) What's the legacy of British colonialism in the West Indies? and (b) How much did Britain benefit from her imperial exploits in the region? In this article, I will attempt to address the first but will largely ignore the second question.
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