Completed shortly before Walter Rodney's assassination in June 1980, A History of the Guyanese Working People, 1881-1905 provides an original, well-informed, and perceptive contribution to the historiography of nineteenth-century Guyanese society. This comprehensive examination encompasses the history of African and Asian immigration into Guyana, the interaction of ethnic groups, the impact of British colonialism, economic and political constraints on the working class, and the social life of the masses.
Rodney argues that the social evolution of the Guyanese working people has been guided by specific material constraints and extremely powerful external focuses from Europe, Africa, Asia, and North America. He emphasizes the destructive fragmentation of the working class along ethnic, political, and social lines, encouraged by the legacy of slavery, postslavery immigration, legal distinctions between various classes of labor, and the economic bases of the society. in contrast to the well-defined middle and upper classes, the working people appeared divided, disorganized, and leaderless. Rodney's account ends in 1905, when the hardships and frustrations of the masses exploded into violence.
A History of the Guyanese Working People, 1881-1905 will stand alone as a landmark study of the profound social upheaval that characterized Guyanese society in the years following emancipation. Anyone interested in the problems of underdeveloped nations, labor control, and the after-effects of colonialism and imperialism will appreciate the significance of this work.
Walter Rodney had achieved, at an early age, the special distinction of being a permanent part of a unique tradition of intellectual leadership among Africans and people of African descent in the Americas. He belongs to the same order of importance as Marcus Garvey and W.E.B. Dubois, George Padmore and C.L.R. James... Throughout this work, the reader is made to feel that his academic authority is always fused and humanized by a sense of personal involvement with the matters in hand.--George Lamming
Series: Johns Hopkins Studies in Atlantic History and Culture
For Ages: 22+ years old
Number Of Pages: 312
Published: 1st September 1981
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 14.6
Weight (kg): 0.41