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Chattel House Blues: Making a Democracy in Barbados: From Clement Payne to Owen Arthur
Chattel House Blues is an account of the struggles of Black Barbadians in the 20th century to secure a place within an island their labour had built as a monument to British colonialism. Having fought against the local oligarchy in the streets of Bridgetown in 1937, black workers and their middle class allies, finally secured universal adult suffrage in...
Chattel House Blues is an account of the struggles of Black Barbadians in the 20th century to secure a place within an island their labour had built as a monument to British colonialism. Having fought against the local oligarchy in the streets of Bridgetown in 1937, black workers and their middle class allies, finally secured universal adult suffrage in 1950 and finally independence in 1966 ending the Great House Rule that had begun three hundred years earlier. But political democracy and national independence did not bring to the new majority community the full feeling of citizenship promised by the founders of the nation. Politically enfranchised but economically disenfranchised and culturally alienated the struggle was rekindled to confront the past and bring justice and equality to the new dispensation; a cultural movement that seeks to centre and promote the African sensibility of the majority community took root and found expression in discourses within the arts, academia, and grass-roots community organisations.
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