Freedom Failed: The Barbados Exception

Why didn't Barbados follow in the footsteps of Haiti?


While reading Eric Foner’s book Reconstruction, I came across something that will interest old veterans of forum debates about the theory of racial equality.

Barbados is often cited as a counterexample of black equality to Haiti. The truth is that a spectrum of freedom and equality followed abolition ranging from the most extreme (Haiti) to the most limited (Dixie):

“The prior experience of abolition in the British West Indies reinforced Southern planters’ certainty of the “disastrous” consequences of emancipation. Viewed through the lens of plantation agriculture, the West Indies taught an unmistakable lesson: Emancipation was a failure. Freedom had come to Haiti in the 1790s and to the British Caribbean in the 1830s, and in both settings former slaves had abandoned the sugar plantations in large numbers to establish themselves as subsistence-oriented small farmers.

This was especially true in Haiti, where revolution had destroyed the planter class, and in Trinidad, Jamaica, and British Guiana, where large tracks of uncultivated land had been available to the former slaves. As a result, sugar production had plummeted; plantation agriculture never resumed in Haiti and in the British Caribbean, it survived only through the massive importation of indentured “coolies” from India and China. Caribbean emancipation stood as a symbol and warning to the white South, a demonstration of the futility of all schemes to elevate blacks, and of the dire fate awaiting American planters in the aftermath of slavery. Most of all, it taught that the freedmen must be barred from access to land. Only on smaller islands like Barbados, where whites owned all the land “and the negro is unable to get possession of a foot of it,” had plantation agriculture continued to flourish.”

That explains a lot.

Unlike Haiti, where abolition was the most successful, where the planter class was violently overthrown in a revolution, and where the land was redistributed to the negro, cash crop agriculture survived in Barbados because the Whites continued to own all the land and dominate the economy.

Haiti sunk into an abyss of poverty, barbarism, and voodoo from which it never recovered. Most Jamaicans believe that freedom failed and that Jamaica was better off under the British Empire.

Note: In the video below, Dr. William Pierce discusses Hesketh Prichard’s 1900 book Where Black Rules White: A Journey Across and About Hayti. Compare to James S. Pike’s 1874 book The Prostrate State: South Carolina Under Negro Government.

We can update Hesketh Prichard. How much progress has the Haitian negro made in the last 111 years since his book was published? Absolutely none.

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  1. (this is in responce to the sambos rant on calhoun), “Erect A Slave-Holding White Male Republic Spanning From The Canadian Border Into The Tropics Through Merciless Conquest, Mass Rape, Wanton Slaughter, And Human Trafficking With A Few Bibles Thrown In For Your Sorrows” that ignorant moron clearly knows nothing about US history, and the fact that he is allowed to pontificate lies about a 200 year old man to justify genocide is disgusting. even nigger “americans” have to respect calhoun, he reorganized the army and was instrumental in expanding the sphere of american influence during its fledgeling years, the fact that the nigger has ignored this clearly illustrates his “edjumukashun” is just a veneer behind which he defames ne of america’s political geniuses, and this is regardless of the “slavery” issue, J. C. was THE politician of the 1830s-40s in the U.S., even in white yankeeland they don’t refer to Calhoun as a “white supremacist”, that is an INSULT, and that nigger can go cra back under his glasses and fuck himself, he is a racist who’s beliefs justify rape and murder of innocent whites worldwide.

  2. Your post doesn’t answer why Barbados, even today, is still quite a stable, prosperous nation. Even without a system of apartheid, the crime rates are quite low and the standards of living are high. You’re only addressing what happened a few hundred years or so ago.

    On the other hand, why should a little over 200,000 blacks out of the 1 billion or so worldwide be seen as that special?

    That alone should make the claim of Barbados as serious evidence for racial equality suspect. I also believe a Sailer piece of Haiti after the earthquake cited evidence that unruly slaves in Barbados were deported to Jamaica.

  3. Though on another hand, Jamaica, even if it had the same number of non-blacks as Haiti, would probably still be a world or so above Haiti.

  4. The post does suggest a line of inquiry: the survival of the plantation system, cash crop agriculture, and land ownership.

    In Haiti, the plantation system was completely eradicated and the Whites were massacred. In Barbados and Dixie, the plantation system survived, and Whites retained their land and thereby retained economic power over blacks.

    As to the gap between Barbados in the 1830s and 2011, that is something worth looking into. I strongly suspect that you will find that the key to explaining the mystery is White land ownership following abolition.

  5. Small population, with elite Indians, whites, mulattos and Chinese, commonwealth and tax haven.
    Does this explain?

  6. The above comment by Thiago was the kind of explanation to the stability question of Barbados today that was raised on this thread–a virtual certainty that it does not result from black self-rule or a homogeneous black demographic–before any “looking into” the reason even be ventured. Black mayhem and chaos are so apparent that only recent mass-madness would be blind to it. When I observe these over-fed deranged college louts display their idiocy and insolence it is clear to me that we would have been infinitely better served if these havens of nihilism had been shut down 50 years ago and apprenticeship reinstituted as the purveyor of educational means.

  7. The recent posts about Highland Park reminded me of this post again. The “small population” argument (flimsy enough as that statistical meandering is) also falls apart when you think of just how many more blacks in Barbados there are than that one town in Michigan.

    There shouldn’t be such resistance to the idea of one black country functioning well, it doesn’t do any real damage to any concrete hereditarian thought. Out of the nearly 1 billion blacks worldwide and all the odd processes of the slave trade, the exception that proves the rule with an entire country shouldn’t be much of a surprise. All this does is feed into kind of a tired liberal ploy- if they’re the same race, surely any major differences must be environmental.

    Is this the case with Ashkenazi Jews vs. Sephardim and Yemeni Jews? We don’t know the exact processes that led to their differences, but it’s quite likely something largely biological.

    It’s still worth noting, though, that out of all the territories and countries in the Carribean with significant or even majority black populations, not a single one functions as remotely badly as Haiti.

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