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Author Topic: Bury the Chains - new book on Abolitionist movement
lagatta
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posted 12 February 2005 11:02 AM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
This book on the small group of activists who toiled for the abolition of slavery throughout Britain's colonies. One amazing statistic is that at the height of slavery, Britain imported more from the wee island of Grenada (slightly smaller than Montreal Island) than from all of Canada!

King Leopold's Ghost was a hard but necessary read, and this book looks just as important:

"Adam Hochschild's acclaimed account of the Belgian Congo, King Leopold's Ghost, told the tale of one of most terrible abuses of human rights: the theft of a vast country and the killing of between five and eight million of its inhabitants. Now, in Bury the Chains, he brings us the story of the most successful episodes of human rights activism, relating how, in just a few years at the end of the 18th century, a small group of men (and one woman) took on the vested interests of state, church and big business - and won" .

http://books.guardian.co.uk/review/story/0,12084,1410155,00.html


From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
Hephaestion
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posted 12 February 2005 11:20 AM      Profile for Hephaestion   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Have you ever read about the colony of Haiti fighting for its independence and freedom, Lagatta? The story puts Sparticus to shame. They utterly defeated the French — twice.

This Could Not Be Allowed, by any of the colonial powers... bad example to set. The Brits sent forces... defeated. The Spanish sent forces... &etc. The Haitians stood them all off and became the first slave colony to gain its freedom.

A little known fact I first read about in Wade Davis' book The Serpent and the Rainbow (very little resemblance to the movie made based on the book).


From: goodbye... :-( | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
lagatta
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posted 12 February 2005 11:25 AM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Oh, one could not very well be a progressive person in Montréal and not have heard and read about the Haitian struggle for independence and freedom! There is a very large and very proud Haitian community here. There are always historical conferences and cultural events on that subject here now that we are in Black History Month.

The Haitian revolutionaries sang La Marseillaise as they defied the French troops. There were of course radical French revolutionaries who favoured extending freedom to Black slaves - and to women - but Thermidor put a stop to all that nonsense.


From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 12 February 2005 07:15 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
When will colonialists learn that they can't kill the human will to be free ?. The French tried to. And the American's attempted to but failed in bridling an ancient culture in Vietnam in just ten thousand days. The war on the poor in Viet Nam was a blink of an eye for an indomitable spirit.

Black magic and the ton ton macoutes, dead from the arseholes up, are no match for the Haitian soul people.

~"They call it freedom when they themselves are free."


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
kingblake
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posted 12 February 2005 08:08 PM      Profile for kingblake     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Hephaestion:
Have you ever read about the colony of Haiti fighting for its independence and freedom, Lagatta? The story puts Sparticus to shame. They utterly defeated the French — twice.
I'm reading Black Jacobins as we speak. It's really great, but the only problem is that it was a second hand buy, and whoever read it before me seems to have underlined and highlighted all of the wrong things. And then there's some really dumb hand-written notes on the inside, such as "Jacobin: extremist revolutionaries who held a very liberal equalitarian vision - had a reputation for violence"...

I liked King Leopold's Ghost, but I found a lot of it a bit too personalized. Talking about Leopold's upbringing is one thing, but I seem to remember the author trying a bit too hard to explain what happened in the Belgian Congo in terms of Leopold's childhood.


From: In Regina, the land of Exotica | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged

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