ABOLITION OF SLAVERY
MANY PEOPLE IN BRITAIN WERE AGAINST SLAVERY.
They believed that it was wrong to keep other human beings as slaves. So, the British decided to abolish the trade of slaves and slavery in the British Empire.
In 1835, slavery was abolished in Mauritius and its dependencies.
When the slaves were freed,
* Some went to live in the suburbs of Port-Louis and did different jobs such as carpenters and masons. Some women earned their living by sewing dresses. * Some bought land and settled as small cultivators.
* Some went to places that were not occupied, in the interior of the island. They cultivated different crops which they sold. * Some of them went to live on the coasts and became fishermen. * Others left the island to go to the dependencies.
When slavery was abolished on 1 February 1835, an attempt was made to secure a cheap source of adaptable labour for intensive sugar plantations in Mauritius. Indentured labour began with Chinese, Malay, African and Malagasy labourers, but ultimately, it was India which supplied the much needed laborers to Mauritius. This period of intensive use of Indian labour took place during British Rule, with many brutal episodes and a long struggle by the indentured for respect. The term applied to the indentured during this period, and which has since become a derogatory term for Mauritians of Asian descent, was coolie. The island soon became the key-point in the trade of indentured laborers, as thousands of Indians set forth from Calcutta or Karikal; not only did they modify the social, political and economic physiognomies of the island, but some also went farther, to the West Indies.
The meeting of a mosaic of people from India, China, Africa and Europe began a process of hybridisation and interlectual frictions and dialogues, which poet Khal Torabully has termed "coolitude". This social reality is a major reference for identity opened to otherness and is widely used in Mauritius where...
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