Haiti is the poorest country in the hemisphere but just over two hundred years ago it was the Americas’ leading exporter. In becoming the first American nation to abolish slavery and racial discrimination, and the Caribbean’s first independent state, Haiti paid a high price. Yet how much of its current problems can be traced to its colonial and revolutionary past? How much is attributable to its treatment by the outside world, to its peasantry, or its politicians? This talk offers a historical background to the country’s present crisis.
Professor David Geggus received his Ph.D. in 1979 from York University, England, M.A.s from the Universities of London and Oxford (1972, 1976), and his B.A. from Oxford University in 1971. He joined University of Florida Department of History in 1983 after holding research positions at the Universities of Southampton and Oxford. He has published four books, including Slavery, War and Revolution (Oxford, 1982) and Haitian Revolutionary Studies (Bloomington, 2002), and some eighty academic articles. He teaches courses on Caribbean history and slavery in the Atlantic world. He has been awarded fellowships from the French Government, The British Academy, John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, National Humanities Center, Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars, Social Science Research Council, National Endowment for the Humanities, and the John Carter Brown Library.
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