From the time Europeans ventured into the so-called New World in the late fifteenth century, the Caribbean has played a most important role in the unfolding of events that would subsequently shake the entire foundation of the world. The meeting of Africans, Europeans, and the indigenous people in the Caribbean is arguably one of the most interesting and important aspects of world history.
The dramatic outbreak of the revolution and the establishment in this hemisphere of the first socialist state that would in short order become a member of the family of socialist states led by the U. While the events in Cuba attracted more international press coverage than any other political drama that unfolded on this side of the Atlantic, the majority of colonial and dependent territories in the Caribbean had also reached a critical stage in the process of decolonization and nation building.
The number of independent states grew from three in to sixteen in The majority of countries that became independent at this time were former British colonies that had earlier agreed to federate as they continued, in close consultation with the British government, to move toward independence.
The Federation of the West Indies was launched in and dissolved four years later, paving the way for individual countries that had joined the federation and others that had declined to join to proceed toward independence as separate political entities.
This process had been in gestation since the forties. Within that same time frame, the other imperial countries that had a presence in the Caribbean— France, the Netherlands, and the United States—sought viable solutions to determining the future status of their respective colonies. It is necessary to place these developments in some historical perspective.
The process of decolonization in the Americas and the Caribbean had been under way for more than two hundred years.
The people of Haiti, at tremendous cost to themselves, fought for their freedom, and when they attained independence inthey were only the second independent country in this hemisphere, after the United States. The Dominican Republic became a sovereign state in in substantially different circumstances.
Cuba joined the ranks of independent states in Puerto Rico Those who lived in colonial territories at midcentury could have been under no illusions about the challenges they faced as they contemplated their options: A critical question was whether a small Caribbean country with limited resources could sever its colonial ties and remain or become economically viable.
For Puerto Rico, the terms of its relationship with the United States had been on the table for some time, and a tolerable and seemingly viable solution had been found when Congress passed Public Law ofestablishing the associated free state or commonwealth.
In a referendum held in the people of Puerto Rico endorsed the package. The agreement gave Puerto Ricans autonomy in internal matters, automatic access to U.
Puerto Rico would have full control of the judiciary and the legislature. Inwhen the matter of the constitutional status of Puerto Rico was due to be considered by the United Nations, another referendum was held.
Sixty percent of voters endorsed the status, 39 percent opted for statehood, and less than 1 percent for independence. Coincident with the introduction of associated status came the implementation of an aid package aimed at overhauling and energizing the economic structure of the island.
The program carried the label Fomento or Operation Bootstrap. The initial gains were so impressive that it became a model for plans developed in other parts of the Caribbean and throughout the world, plans intended to kick-start the inflow of foreign investment and promote industrial growth and development in the predominantly agriculture-based economies of the third world.
The French Caribbean In similar fashion, the people of the French Caribbean territories opted for a revised colonial relationship with France, one that favored the policy of assimilation of the territories into France rather than to move toward greater autonomy or independence.
The matter was put to the electorate of Martinique, Guadeloupe, and French Guiana in a referendum held in ; a majority of voters expressed support for assimilation. Had they opted for greater autonomy, they would have stood to lose access to the network of social security and other benefits that they enjoyed, along with the status of citizens of France residing in the overseas territories.
Trujillo was able to benefit from a tide of anti-American sentiment, the consequence of the fact that the U. Marines had occupied that country in and, after their withdrawal inthe U. Until his demise in Trujillo would promote the Dominican Republic as a white Hispanic society, notwithstanding the fact that cheap labor from neighboring Haiti was a virtually indispensable part of the workforce, especially in agriculture.
|European Colonialism in the Caribbean||History of colonialism and Decolonization The era of European colonialism lasted from the 16th to 19th centuries and involved European powers vastly extending their reach around the globe by establishing colonies in the AmericasAfricaand Asia. The dismantling of European empires following World War II saw the process of decolonization begin in earnest.|
|Sir Keith Hunte – Emeritus – University of the West Indies, Barbados||Martin north halfSt.|
|Western European colonialism and colonization - Wikipedia||Influential Puerto Rican Writings, ed.|
Trujillo succeeded in modernizing the economy and strengthening the army without effecting any improvement in the political or social life of the country. Early in and with substantial backing from the United States, a council of state set about restoring a semblance of constitutional rule and legally constituted governmental authority.
In the elections that followed in December, the first such to have been held in forty years, Juan Bosch won the presidency.
Bosch tried to introduce an austerity program and take other similar measures to effect necessary repairs to the economy. Within nine months of taking office Bosch was overthrown by the military and replaced by a three-man civilian junta. The eighth change of government occurred in Aprilwhen the government of Donald Reid Cabral was thrown out of office by supporters of Bosch.
As the situation spun out of control, a nervous President Lyndon Johnson dispatched U. This action was widely condemned throughout the Americas.
Brazil agreed to contribute a contingent of 1, men; Paraguay, Costa Rica, and Honduras sent smaller contingents. The civil war that broke out claimed over three thousand lives. New elections were set for June The spectacle of America's continued role as quarterback to the wining political teams projected the image of the Dominican Republic as a U.
The country struggled with mounting fiscal deficits, international isolation, and unresolved social tensions, all of which constituted adequate material for political exploitation by President Duvalier and his son, who succeeded him.
Duvalier built support for his regime by championing the cause of noirisme and winning support from black middle-class businessmen and urban professionals and by mobilizing support from the "section chiefs" who were the traditional leaders in the predominantly rural areas.Rain on A Tin Roof [Gabriel J.
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Distance has sharpened the author's love for his homeland and people. Delving into stories of . free essays, literary analysis, research papers and term papers. Legacy of Colonialism in the Caribbean of The Middle Passage? which is a detailed extension of Curtin's pioneer census of the Atlantic Slave trade.
From the late 15th to the late 19th centuries, Spain controlled extensive territories in and around the Caribbean Sea, including the Greater Antilles, the mainland and islands along the Caribbean’s southern littoral, and the entire Gulf of Mexico.
However, unlike the British West Indies, the. Mind on Fire ‘The past is never dead. It’s not even past,” Faulkner observed, and with One Hundred Years of Solitude, García Márquez made the presence of the past a condition of life in.
But what was constant in the Caribbean was (and in many respects still is) the valorization of European culture and “whiteness,” and the depreciation of African roots and “blackness”—despite the fact that the vast majority of Caribbean people are of African descent.