Topics: Slavery, Slave rebellion, Rebellion Pages: 6 (1355 words) Published: March 24, 2014
Passive and Active resistance
Slaves hated slavery and they rejected this imperial ideology by active and passive rsistance.

Revolts were the most daring form of active resistance employed by the slaves. This normally resulted in bloodshed, as slaves and whites died and a large number of properties were destroyed. There were four major slave revolts in the Caribbean. These were: Berbice/Coffy Revolt (1763)

Haitian Revolution (1791)
Barbados/Bussa's Revolt (1816)
Sam Sharpe/Christmas Rebellion (1831)
The Haitian Revolution.
Slaves' resentment of the ill- treatment they received from managers/overseers. The lack of provisions available to the slaves.

The revolt took place under the leadership of Coffy, an Africa-born slave. It began on the Magdalenburg Plantation on the Conje River, and quickly spread to the Berbice River. This revolt was one of the most prolonged battles of enslaved Africans against whites. It lasted for a full 20 months, from the close of February 1763 to December 1764.

The slaves had two major contentions:
a) they were badly treated by the whites,
b) they desired a designated area where they could live in freedom. The whites, being unable to suppress the rebellion, solicited the support of Native Americans. It was at this point that the dominant class began to crush slave resistance.

By October 1763, Coffy had committed suicide, rather than submit to defeat. Despite their heroic resistance, most of the Africans succumbed to fever. It was not until December 1764 that all remaining Africans were captured. Seven leaders in the revolt were broken at the wheel, while two others were severely beaten, branded under the gallows and deported from the colony.

Barbados/Bussa's Revolt (1816)

Slaves' belief that emancipation was being withheld.
Activities of nonconformist missionaries.
Barbadian planters' refusal to accept the Slave Registration Bill. Failure of the Amelioration Proposals (1823)

The slave revolt was started by Bussa and Jacky and quickly spread through-out Barbados. A day into the revolt, martial law was declared.
This, in essence, crushed the rebellion.

Bussa died during the conflict.
In the end, 214 persons were executed, including Franklin,
and 100 exiled to Sierra Leone.
Missionaries, who were in any way sympathetic to the slaves, were persecuted. Chapels were damaged and the ministers threatened violently. Some of these missionaries were eventually forced to flee to neighbouring islands. The revolt was quite damaging to whites, as a fifth of the sugar crop was destroyed.

Sam Sharpe/Christmas Rebellion (1831)
Slaves' belief that emancipation was being withheld.
Noncomformist missionaries' activities.

The strike began on the Kensington Estate in St James under the leadership of Samuel Sharpe. Sharpe believed that slaves had been freed by England and that the planters were withholding this freedom. He organised a strike for wages - they would not return to work until they were paid. However, this act of civil disobedience quickly turned into a revolt as slaves began destroying cane fields and damaging other property.

The militia was called in and successfully quelled the revolt. During the revolt, 400 slaves and 10 whites were killed.
In the end, 100 slaves were executed, including Sam Sharpe; another 100 were flogged. Missionaries who were blamed for encouraging the ideas of freedom and equality for slaves experienced the destruction of chapels. Missionaries such as William Knibb, Thomas Burchell and H.G. Pfeiffer suffered persecution. Revolts and rebellions of the slaves to their enslavement is active resistance. Haitian Revolution (1791).

It represents the first successful slave revolt in the entire Caribbean. We measure its success by the outcome: the fact that the slaves were able to permanently overthrow or abolish the system of slavery and...

References: Caribbean Revision History for CXC, Peter Ashdown and Francis Humphreys
History of Jamaica, Clinton V. BlackThe Haitian Revolution and its Effects, Patrick E. Bryan
Caribbean Story Book 1, William Claypole and John Robothom
Slaves Who Abolished Slavery, Vol 1, Richard Hart
Maroon Societies, Richard Price
Sam Sharpe: From Slave to Hero, C.S Reid
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