Jamaica gained her independence from Britain in 1962, after 152 years of Spanish colonialism and 307 years of British colonial rule. The first independence government had to tackle the legacies of colonialism, which included more than 300 years of slavery. But the emerging political and economic elites almost immediately ran into a crisis in their approach to tackling these legacies in pursuit of development. This crisis expressed itself in several ways, and four are highlighted in a photo exhibition: the Coral Gardens Incident of 1963; the government bulldozing of Back-a-Wall and Shanty Town from 1963 to 1966; the 1966 state visit of Haile Selassie; and the riots spawned in 1968 by the government expulsion of University of the West Indies lecturer Walter Rodney. This crisis arose from a clash of paths of development—a largely neocolonial one that marginalized the epistemic, ontological, and agential compass of the black majority, and the other, the opposite.

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