Free and Unfree Labor Migration, 1600–1900: An Introduction
Abstract: The following three papers share a common interest in Asian and African overseas labor migrations that Westerners organized and manipulated during the centuries between 1600 and 1900. They illuminate different stages in Western attitudes toward slavery and other forms of unfree labor, and they shed light on the attitudes of slaves, convicts, and indentured laborers themselves.
“The World’s Oldest Trade”: Dutch Slavery and Slave Trade in the Indian Ocean in the Seventeenth Century
Abstract: This article discusses various aspects of slavery and the slave trade of the Dutch East India Company in the Indian Ocean world: the markets of supply and demand or geographic origins and destinations of slaves; the routes to slavery or the diverse means of recruitment of forced labor; the miscellaneous occupations performed by company and private slaves; the size of Dutch slavery and the volume of the accompanying annual slave trade; and the various forms of slave resistance and slave revolt. The discussion transcends the ahistorical, incomplete, descriptive, static, one-dimensional picture and conventional generalized abstractions of slavery that characterize much of traditional scholarship. Instead, an alternative historicized, holistic, analytical, dynamic, multidimensional, and open model is suggested—one that is sensitive to chronological and geographic variations, socioeconomic and political contexts, and cross-cultural interactions.
Indian Convict Workers in Southeast Asia in the Late Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth Centuries
Anand A. Yang
Abstract: South Asian convicts transported to Southeast Asia in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries were part of a global system of forced migration. Together with slaves and bonded and indentured laborers, they helped settle and colonize the overseas European empires. No wonder, then, that recent writings have designated them as “convict workers,” an emphasis that shifts attention away from their earlier characterization as “professional and habitual criminals” to highlight their actual lived experiences in the penal settlements. Indeed, Indian “convict workers” filled a critical need for labor in Southeast Asia, playing an especially significant role in carrying out the public works projects that were so essential to the establishment and consolidation of the British Empire in the region. This convict system came to an end in the late nineteenth century.
After Slavery: Asian Labor, the American South, and the Age of Emancipation
Matthew Pratt Guterl
Abstract: In comparing the adjustments to a free labor economy in the post-emancipation United States South and in slaveholding Cuba, this essay reveals certain parallels and divergences. Most particularly, it emphasizes the relative position of both places in the global, national, and colonial economies, and it explores the political economy of race and work. Following Confederate expatriates and Victorian travelers from the United States to the Caribbean, it also draws attention to various intellectual and cultural connections between Cuba and the American South. Here, too, it is especially concerned with shared notions of race and racial supremacy.
Michael Adas, ed. Agricultural and Pastoral Societies in Ancient and Classical History
Reviewed by Touraj Daryaee
Piotr O. Scholz. Eunuchs and Castrati: A Cultural History
Reviewed by Pam Brooks
Elizabeth Abbott. A History of Celibacy
Reviewed by Frank Kirkpatrick
Charles Holcombe. The Genesis of East Asia, 221 B.C.–A.D. 907
Reviewed by Brett L. Walker
W. M. Spellman. Monarchies, 1000–2000
Reviewed by Dean T. Ferguson
François Crouzet. A History of the European Economy, 1000–2000
Reviewed by Robert A. Pierce
Lauren Benton. Law and Colonial Cultures: Legal Regimes in World History, 1400–1900
Reviewed by Adam McKeown
Elaine G. Breslaw, ed. Witches of the Atlantic World: A Historical Reader and Primary Sourcebook
Reviewed by Brian P. Levack
David Cannadine. Ornamentalism: How the British Saw Their Empire
Reviewed by Peter H. Hoffenberg
James J. Orr. The Victim as Hero: Ideologies of Peace and National Identity in Postwar Japan
Reviewed by Bob Tadashi Wakabayashi