Caribbean Studie

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C) The development of systems of productions: Slash and Burn, Encomienda, Slavery, Indentureship, the Plantation system. A system of production refers to the way in which an economy is organizes to provide commodities to sustain society. Slash and Burn

When the Spaniards arrived the Arawaks and Caribs were producing Agricultural surpluses and trade was mostly organized around feeding and providing for the wants of the community. The arawaks and caribs used a slash and burn technique in their agricultural production. By the method they would slash (cut down) trees and bushes from the land and then burn them in order to release nutrients into the soil. They would then grow crops in these fields and when they became nutrient deplete they would move unto new plots and repeat the process. Encomienda

The Spaniards however brought ideas about how the system of production should be organized. Their main motivation eas the acquisition of precious metals. The Spaniard introduced the Encomienda system of production as a way to organize the enslaved labour in the colonies for productive work. By the encomienda system, a Spanish colonist would be awarded a number of Indians to work for him in the mines and in the fields. In return, the colonist were responsible for teaching them Christian principles, paying them wages and looking after them generally Slavery and Plantation system

African slavery was introduced in the 17th century to provide labour on the newly introduced sugar plantations. The Africans were kidnapped from West-Africa and forced to work on Sugar plantations in the Caribbean. Under this system the profits were then repatriated to Europe and used to promote manufacturing and industrial strength in Europe. Slavery can be considered to be a total institution because it dominated every aspect of African lives to ensure that they provided profit. They controlled what the Africans ate and what they were allowed to do. The slaves were expected to work long...
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