Sunday, January 17, 2010

From Heaven to Hell

I didn't know this:
Haiti, the “Jewel of the Antilles”, was once the richest colony in the world, providing half of France’s gross national product in the 1750s.
From the excellent OECD Insights Blog.

1 comment:

  1. It's nice that Haiti was once the "Jewel of the Antilles". It's just a pity that the enslaved population were unable to enjoy the distinction. Also, it's easy to have a colony that's producing half your gross national product when you don't have to pay the workforce anything. And I suppose any Haitian slave who queried his 'terms and conditions' would swiftly find himself hanging from the nearest tree! All credit to them, they achieved the near-impossible by winning their freedom in 1804, and against Napoleon Bonaparte, of all people! Although France never forgave them for the humiliation, starving them of trade, while the slave-owning United States consistently undermined them until their own emancipation of the slaves in 1863. Yes, the Haitians have paid a heavy price for freedom.

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