Introduction: “Me No B’longs to Dem”: Emancipation’s Possibilities and Limits in Antigua
2015. "Introduction: “Me No B’longs to Dem”: Emancipation’s Possibilities and Limits in Antigua", Troubling Freedom: Antigua and the Aftermath of British Emancipation, Natasha Lightfoot
Download citation file:
This chapter presents the central argument of the book: attention to the immediate, everyday acts of survival among emancipated people most clearly illuminates their changing definitions of freedom. It reveals that while their new status as free persons bestowed new opportunities, certain crucial disadvantages originating in slavery remained well after abolition. This chapter highlights the shaping quality of persistent racial ideas among sugar estate owners, missionaries, and other powerful whites, alongside the colony’s increasing economic distress, that determined the failed outcomes of their repeated struggles to broaden freedom’s definition in their lived experiences.
Antigua Council Meeting Minutes, 1831–1833, National Archives of Antigua and Barbuda, Victoria Park, St. John’s, Antigua.
Codrington Papers, R.P. 2616, National Archives of Antigua and Barbuda, Victoria Park, St. John’s, Antigua.
Great Britain, Colonial Office Papers, British Public Record Office, National Archives, Kew, London, UK (Colonial Office Series 7/31–111, Papers Pertaining to Antigua, 1831–1858).
Moravian Church Archives, Eastern West Indies Province, Bethlehem, PA, United States.
Papers of Langford Lovell Hodge, Duke Humfrey’s Library, Bodleian Library, Oxford University, Oxford, UK.
Wesleyan Methodist Missionary Society Papers, School of Oriental and African Studies Library, London, UK.
West Indian Newspaper Collection, American Antiquarian Society, Worcester, MA, U.S.
Antigua Herald & Gazette (St. John’s, Antigua)
Antigua Observer (St. John’s, Antigua)
Antigua Times (St. John’s, Antigua)
Antigua Weekly Register (St. John’s, Antigua)
The Dominican (Roseau, Dominica)
Port of Spain Gazette (Port of Spain, Trinidad)