By Barbara P. Josiah (auth.)

ISBN-10: 0230338011

ISBN-13: 9780230338012

ISBN-10: 1349297011

ISBN-13: 9781349297016

From the overdue 1800s, African staff migrated to the mineral-rich hinterland parts of Guyana, mined gold, diamonds, and bauxite; varied the country's financial system; and contributed to nationwide improvement. using actual property, monetary, and dying documents, in addition to oral bills of the hard work migrants in addition to colonial officers and mining businesses' details kept in nationwide information in Guyana, nice Britain, and the U.S. Library of Congress, the learn situates miners into the old constitution of the country's financial improvement. It analyzes the staff allure to mining from agriculture, their suggestions of "order and progress," and the way they formed their lives in confident methods instead of turning into mere sufferers of colonialism. during this contentious plantation society suffering from opposed relatives among the industrial elites and the laboring category, as well as generating the strategically vital bauxite for the aviation period of worldwide Wars I & II, for nearly a century the staff braved the ecologically adverse and infrequently lethal environments of the gold and diamond fields within the quest for El Dorado in Guyana.

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Extra resources for Migration, Mining, and the African Diaspora: Guyana in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries

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33 The origins of workers had long played roles in recruiting and migration policies. Many enslaved persons in the Americas came from regions of Africa where gold and diamond mining and jewelery- and coin-making were traditional practices. Colonial Spaniards, who owned gold mines in New Granada, (present-day Colombia that once included Panama), Ecuador, and Venezuela, expressed preferences for buying persons from areas of Africa noted for gold mining. In the Carolinas and Georgia where rice flourished, the choice of Africans for enslavement from the Rice Coast of Africa was not random.

Consequently, although mining took them to the limits of human endurance, they were willing to provide the crucial labor the industry needed at a strategic time in Guyana’s development. On several occasions, colonial administrators and their commercial counterparts recommended highly the recruitment of African-descended migrants similar to villagers. However, government officials and the economic elites exhibited contradictory behavior. While asserting that most of these workers were self-motivated and dependable, they were recommending more stringent laws to control them.

Efforts to develop these two sectors of the industry by mining, administrative, and private officials were predicated by a focus on quick profits on limited investments. Colonial bureaucrats and their allies were unable to move beyond conventions applicable to the slave trading, enslavement, and postemancipation eras in terms of their attitude to labor recruitment, management, and conserving the workforce. 3 Guyana’s colonial status influenced migration and mining strategies and circumscribed wide-scale development.

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Migration, Mining, and the African Diaspora: Guyana in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries by Barbara P. Josiah (auth.)


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