Caribbean Review

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Caribbean Review, a quarterly journal dedicated to the Caribbean, Latin America and their emigrant groups, is published by Caribbean Review, Inc., a corporation not for profit organized under the laws of the State of Florida (Barry B. Levine, President, Andrew R. Banks, Vice President; Kenneth M. Bloom, Secretary.) Caribbean Review is published at the Latin American and Caribbean Center of FIU (Mark B. Rosenberg, Director) and receives supporting funds from the Office of Academic Affairs (Steven Altman, Provost; Paul Gallagher, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs) of Florida International University and the State of Florida.

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Vol. XII, No. 3
Three Dollars

Class Conflict in Nicaragua; The Nature of Zombie Existence; The Pharmacology of Black Magic; The
Latinization of the US; The Ballad of Gregorio Cort6z; Piracy in the 17th Century Caribbean;
Interviewing James F "Son" Mitchell.






Center .-

Latin American and
Caribbean Studies Faculty
Irma Alonso, Economics; Carlos Alvarez,
Education; Ewart Archer, International
Relations; Gabriel Aurioles, Technology;
Ken I. Boodhoo, International Relations;
Manuel Carvajal, Economics; Forrest
Colburn, Political Science; Roberto Cruz,
Economics; Grenville Draper, Physical
Sciences; Nancy Erwin, International
Relations; Luis Escovar, Psychology;
Robert Farrell, Education; Gordon Finley,
Psychology; Charles Frankenhoff, Health
Services; Fernando Gonzalez-Reigosa,
Psychology; Lowell Gudmundson,
History; John Jensen, Modern
Languages; David Jeuda, Modern
Languages; Farrokh Jhabvala,
International Relations; Antonio Jorge,
Economics; Charles Lacombe, (Adjunct)
Anthropology; David Lee, Biology;
William Leffland, International Affairs
Center; Barry B. Levine, Sociology; Jan
Luytjes, International Business; Anthony
P Maingot, Sociology; Luis Martinez-Perez,
Education; James A. Mau, Sociology;
Florentin Maurrasse, Physical Sciences;
Ram6n Mendoza, Modern Languages;
Raul Moncarz, Economics; Olga Nazario,
(Adjunct) International Relations; Marta
Ortiz, Marketing; Leonardo Rodriguez,
International Business; Mark B.
Rosenberg, Political Science; Reinaldo
Sinchez, Modern Languages; Luis P Salas,
Criminal Justice; Jorge Salazar,
Economics; Philip Shepherd,
International Business; Alex Stepick,
Anthropology; George Sutija,
International Banking; Mark D.
Szuchman, History; Anitra Thorhaug,
Biology; William T. Vickers,
Anthropology; Jose T. Villate,
Technology; Maida Watson Espener,
Modern Languages; Mira Wilkins,

* 60 courses on Latin America and the Caribbean each academic
year; language training in Spanish, Portuguese and Haitian
* 47 faculty specialists in the humanities, social sciences, natural
sciences and professional schools.
* Certificate in Latin American and Caribbean Studies.
* Master's degree programs in international studies, economics
and international business.
* Founding member, with Department of Economics, of
IESCARIBE (Institute of Economic and Social Research of the
Caribbean Basin).
* Translation and Interpretation Program.
* Summer study in Latin America.
* Lectures by distinguished visiting scholars; film series and other
extracurricular activities.
* Latin American and Caribbean Students' Association.
* One of the 12 National Resource Centers of Latin American
Studies supported by the US Department of Education.
* Annual workshops for public school teachers and journalists.
* Monthly discussion groups with members of business, banking
and legal communities.
* Conferences on immigration and refugee policy, business risk in
Latin America, Caribbean Basin economic conditions, and
Caribbean dialectology.
Library collection rich in area-related materials, particularly for
the Caribbean. Latin American and Caribbean Reading Room
housing special collections, bibliographic and reference materials,
newspapers, government documents, and publications of
international organizations such as the OAS, CELADE, ECLA,
Multidisciplinary research emphasizing the Caribbean Basin;
ongoing faculty projects on Haitian and Cuban migration, Cuban
oral history, Honduras, US foreign policy in the Caribbean, urban
environment and health, patterns of social and occupational
stratification in Argentina and Costa Rica, the Amazon.
For further information contact:
Latin American and Caribbean Center
Florida International University
Tamiami Trail
Miami, Florida 33199

In this issue....

Crossing Swords
A Shortcut to Development?
By Selwyn Ryan
Responses and Replies
Kruijer and Dew
Theory and Practice in Nicaragua
The Economics of Class Dynamics
By Forrest D. Colburn
Interviewing James F "Son" Mitchell
In the Center Looking for Change
By Gary Brana-Shute
On the Nature of Zombie Existence
The Reality of a Voudou Ritual
By Bernard Diederich
The Ethnobiology of the Haitian Zombie
On the Pharmacology of Black Magic
By E. Wade Davis
Notes on the Reconquest
The Latin Americanization of the United States?
By Alejandro Portes

Page 14

Page 22

Between Two Worlds
Educated Puerto Rican Migrant Women
By Virginia E. SAnchez-Korrol
A Decent Woman
Abstracts From a New Novel
By Miguel Correa
A Clash of Cultures
The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez
A Film Review by Tomas Rivera
Tales of the High Seas
Gay Pirates in the 17th Century Caribbean
Reviewed by Arthur N. Gilbert
An Aristocratic Briton Views the
Twilight of Empire
Thoughts on a Travel Classic
Reviewed by Daniel J. Crowly
Recent Books
An Informative Listing on the Caribbean,
Latin America and their Emigrant Groups
By Marian Goslinga

Page 32

On the Cover:

"Pointing to a lumpy scar
on his right cheek, Nar-
cisse said in his slow de-
liberate manner, 'One of
the nails in my coffin did
this; it went through my

"Individual characteris-
tics brought by immi-
grants to the United
States do not suffice to
explain their process of
economic and social

"It is, in the end, a hu-
manization of the dif-
ferences between men
and women of different
cultural perspectives-
an attempt at under-
standing and the tragic
circumstances of misun-
derstanding and in-
ability to communicate
between cultures."

The Zombies by Haitian
artist Hector Hyppolite
(oil on masonite, 155 by
192 cm). Painted in
1946, it now hangs at the
Mus6e d'Art Haitien de
College Saint-Pierre in
Port-au-Prince. See re-
lated stories, pages 14
and 18.




The New



in the


edited by Barry B. Levine

July 1983, 274 pages
$26.50 (cloth), $11.50 (paper)

"Comprehensive and well-balanced ideo-
logically . useful for courses on interna-
tional relations, comparative politics, and
Latin American foreign policy."
-Carmelo Mesa-Lago,
University of Pittsburgh

"This book fills a void that has existed in
the study of inter-American relations ...
The authors' clear, well-written prose is
suitable for teaching college students . .
especially valuable."
-Jorge I. Dominguez,
Harvard University

This book explores in detail the history and
nature of Cuba's influence in the Common-
wealth Caribbean, Mexico, and Central and
South America, as well as its relations with
revolutionary movements and communist
parties throughout Latin America. The authors
place Cuba's Western Hemisphere contacts
within the wider framework of the island's in-
volvements with the Third World (especially
Africa) and the Soviet Union. The meaning of
the new Cuban presence becomes clear in
the authors' analyses of the limits to that
presence and the way the United States
should respond to it.

Westview Press
5500 Central Avenue
Boulder, Colorado 80301


Barry B. Levine
Associate Editors
Anthony P Maingot
Mark B. Rosenberg
Managing Editor
June S. Belkin
Contributing Editors
Henry S. Gill
Eneid Routte G6mez
Aaron L. Segal
Andres Serbin
Olga J. Wagenheim
Assistant Editor
Judith C. Faerron
Marian Goslinga
Linda M. Marston

Vol. XII, No. 3

Art Director
Danine L. Carey
Design Consultant
Juan C. U(rquiola
Contributing Artists
Barrie Bamberg
Eleanor Bonner
Terry Cwikla
Advertising Manager
A. D. Austin
Circulation Manager
Natalia M. Chirino
Project Manager
Maria J. Gonzalez
Project Assistant
Marlene Gago
Marketing Assistant
Francisco Franquiz

Three Dollars

Board of Editors
Reinaldo Arenas
Ricardo Arias Calder6n
Errol Barrow
German Carrera Damas
Yves Daudet
Edouard Glissant
Harmannus Hoetink
Gordon K. Lewis
Vaughan A. Lewis
Leslie Manigat
James A. Mau
Carmelo Mesa-Lago
Carlos Alberto Montaner
Daniel Oduber
Robert A. Pastor
Selwyn Ryan
Carl Stone
Edelberto Torres Rivas
Jose Villamil
Gregory B. Wolfe

Caribbean Review, a quarterly journal dedicated to the Caribbean, Latin America, and
their emigrant groups, is published by Caribbean Review, Inc., a corporation not for profit
organized under the laws of the State of Florida (Barry B. Levine, President; Andrew R.
Banks, Vice President; Kenneth M. Bloom, Secretary). Caribbean Review is published at
the Latin American and Caribbean Center of FIU (Mark B. Rosenberg, Director) and
receives supporting funds from the Office of Academic Affairs of Florida International
University (Steven Altman, Provost; Paul Gallagher, Associate Vice President for Aca-
demic Affairs) and the State of Florida. This public document was promulgated at a
quarterly cost of $6,659 or $1.21 per copy to promote international education with a
primary emphasis on creating greater mutual understanding among the Americas, by
articulating the culture and ideals of the Caribbean and Latin America, and emigrating
groups originating therefrom.
Editorial policy: Caribbean Review does not accept responsibility for any of the views
expressed in its pages. Rather, we accept responsibility for giving such views the oppor-
tunity to be expressed herein. Our articles do not represent a consensus of opinion-
some articles are in open disagreement with others and no reader should be able to agree
with all of them.
Mailing address: Caribbean Review, Florida International University, Tamiami Trail, Miami,
Florida 33199. Telephone (305) 554-2246. Unsolicited manuscripts (articles, essays,
reprints, excerpts, translations, book reviews, poetry, etc.) are welcome, but should be
accompanied by a self-addressed stamped envelope.
Copyright: Contents Copyright 1983 by Caribbean Review, Inc. The reproduction of
any artwork, editorial or other material is expressly prohibited without written permission
from the publisher.
Photocopying: Permission to photocopy for internal or personal use or the internal or
personal use of specific clients is granted by Caribbean Review, Inc. for libraries and
other users registered with the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC), provided that the
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01970. Special requests should be addressed to Caribbean Review, Inc.
Syndication: Caribbean Review articles have appeared in other media in English, Span-
ish, Portuguese and German. Editors, please write for details.
Index: Articles appearing in this journal are annotated and indexed in America: History
and Life; Development and Welfare Index; Hispanic American Periodicals Index; Histor-
ical Abstracts; International Bibliography of Book Reviews; International Bibliography of
Periodical Literature; International Development Abstracts; New Periodicals Index; Pub-
lic Affairs Information Service Bulletin (PAIS); United States Political Science Docu-
ments; and Universal Reference System. An index to the first six volumes appeared in Vol.
VII, No. 2; an index to volumes seven and eight, in Vol. IX, No. 2; to volumes nine and ten,
in V61.Xl, No. 4.
Subscription rates: See coupon in this issue for rates. Subscriptions to the Caribbean,
Latin America, Canada, and other foreign destinations will automatically be shipped by
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Issues: Back numbers still in print are purchasable at $5.00 each. A list of those still
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International Standard Serial Number: ISSN 0008-6525; Library of Congress Classifica-
tion Number: AP6, C27; Library of Congress Card Number: 71-16267; Dewey Decimal
Number: 079.7295.


A Shortcut to


By Selwyn Ryan

In 1974 Trinidad and Tobago suddenly
found itself flush with funds to accelerate
economic development consequent
upon the dramatic increase in the price of
petroleum. However, the administrative re-
sources required to implement the ex-
panded development strategy which called
for heavy capital expenditure on the part of
the state were not in place. Prime Minister
Eric Williams himself bemoaned in his
1977 budget speech: "Over the past three
years especially, there has been a marked
increase in the volume, size, complexity and
cost of the capital works being undertaken
by the public sector. The pace of these de-
velopments has not been matched by the
pace of the restructuring of the public ser-
vice, improvements in staffing in a qualita-
tive sense, and rationalization of the use of
existing staff. As a result, the public sector
... has found itself increasingly unable to
cope with the managerial and other require-
ments for effective implementation of the
capital works which it has undertaken or
proposed to undertake. .... The principal
causes of inefficiency ... [are]: weaknesses
in the organizational structure and staffing
of sectoral agencies; weaknesses in pro-
cedural arrangements including those nec-
essaryto ensure effective coordination both
within and between executing agencies;
and weaknesses in relevant training and ex-
perience in the tasks to be performed."
Given the public expectations and the
problems encountered with local profes-
sionals in helping the government to re-
spond to these expectations, the decision
was taken to experiment with "government-
to-government" agreements. As the prime
minister put it, "the government has given
consideration to a somewhat novel alterna-
tive, viz: approaching a government directly
and structuring an umbrella arrangement
through which the foreign government
would sponsor the implementation of a par-
ticular project."
The new strategy was confidently ex-
pected to lead to the rapid achievement of
the regime's development goals in time for
the critical 1981 general election. Foreign
governments and their designated contrac-
tors were expected to compensate for the
glaring deficiencies of their Trinidad
The governments involved were Canada,
the United Kingdom, Sweden, the Nether-
lands, Norway, Belgium, Luxembourg,
West Germany, France and Austria. The 41

projects included rehabilitation and addi-
tions to the port and the airport, road and
bridge construction and repair, rehabilita-
tion of the public transportation system, the
building of hospitals, libraries, government
offices, abattoirs, public housing and park-
ing complexes, an official printer, survey-
ing and clearing wrecks in the harbor, the
construction of interisland ferries, the es-
tablishment of cold storage facilities, solu-
tions to local traffic problems, agricultural
resettlement, waste disposal and utilization,
dairy production and processing, industrial
baking, the establishment of a concrete ele-
ment factory, adult education, the reorga-
nization of the system of information
storage and retrieval in several government
offices, and a school nutrition program to
name a few.
The choice of this strategy provoked a
storm of criticism both in and out of Parlia-
ment. It was viewed as a de facto reversion
to colonialism with all its assumptions
about the incompetence of colonials to be
authors of their own development. Once
again, foreigners were being invited to de-
velop the country instead of local expertise
being asked to do so within their ca-
pabilities. To the critics, it was particularly
ironic that the strategy was being articulated
by someone who had come into politics to
prove that indigenous professionals were
every whit as competent as their metro-
politan counterparts. Opposition parlia-
mentarians were extremely critical as were
local professionals, academic analysts and
senior civil servants who warned that none
of the advantages envisaged by the prime
minister would be achieved.

Critics Correct
Experience was to prove the critics correct.
The government, under the leadership of
George Chambers who became prime
minister following the death of Eric
Williams in March 1981, acknowledged in
his 1982 budget speech that "the objectives
of the government-to-government ar-
rangements are not being fully met." Con-
cerned about the delays and cost overruns
that had become endemic on all the pro-
jects, a committee under the chairmanship
of Lennox Ballah was appointed to review
the government-to-government arrange-
The committee found that few of the an-
ticipated benefits had been achieved and
such benefits as were achieved were out-

weighed by the financial and other costs.
Few of the foreign governments were pre-
pared to guarantee or even supervise effec-
tively the performance of firms from their
countries; if anything, they used their diplo-
matic staff to obtain the best contractual
terms available to foreign firms. The report
complained: "Foreign missions consult
among themselves and have sought to ad-
justto their particular requirements the best
contractual terms offered to a foreign gov-
ernment by the government of Trinidad and
Tobago. This situation has resulted in a gen-
eral escalation of terms and benefits for
foreign governments and consequently an
unnecessary imposition on the limited re-
sources of the country... Foreign govern-
ments refused to accept responsibility for
the performance of firms even if they were
'persuaded' to designate them. The foreign
firm consistently gets the support of its for-
eign government in pressuring govern-
ment and its agencies for larger conces-
sions for the foreign entity with undesirable
consequence for the government of Trin-
idad and Tobago."
Government-to-government contracts
had been seen as a time-saver by Williams.
It was a way of bypassing irritating bureau-
cratic hurdles and bottlenecks. The foreign
governments and the firms were however
aware, in advance of negotiations, that they
were in a monopolistic bargaining situation,
and as such, agreements were only con-
cluded expeditiously if the government
agreed to all or most of the demands of the
foreign enterprise. Contract negotiations
often dragged on. The bureaucratic de-
mands of the foreign governments' pro-
cedures and regulations further slowed
implementation. Delays were also occa-
sioned by the need on the part of foreign
firms to spend time assimilating local stan-

Crossing Swords is a
regular feature of Carib-
bean Review. The views
expressed herein are
the sole opinion of the
authors. Editorial board
member Selwyn Ryan is
chairman of the Public
Utilities Commission of
the Republic of Trinidad
and Tobago. Formerhead of the department of
government at the University of the West In-
dies, he is the author of Race and Nationalism
in Trinidad and Tobago.


dards, regulations, customs, cultures and
work habits. Some firms took as long as two
years to mobilize giving rise to an inability to
maintain schedules.
Government-to-government strategy
was expected to eliminate the corruption
that had become endemic on public sector
projects. The committee however found
that, if anything, "the lobbying had in-
creased rather than decreased."
Substandard materials which did not
meet contract specification were used in
many cases despite complaints by local
consultants. The expected high standard of
performance often was not realized. Little
effort was made to keep costs down or to
meet time schedules. Loan financing ar-
rangements made by some governments
on projects which were externally financed
were not always in the country's favor. The
committee charged that there was
oligopolistic collusion among contractors
to inflate prices and terms and conditions
relating to income tax and customs duty
exemptions. Local regulations were flouted
with impunity.
In terms of the transfer of technology and
training, the evidence suggests little cross-
fertilization took place. In many cases, for-
eign consultants picked the brains of local
professionals, repackaged the information
and charged fees as much as ten times
those charged by their local equivalents.
Where training programs were organized,
the planning and design were done over-
seas, affording local professionals little op-
portunity to benefit. Personnel who were
expected to be in position to conduct train-
ing sessions were often not the most com-
petent available. On-the-job management
was also rigidly controlled by expatriates. In
some cases, the country chosen to design
and construct the project was not the most
advanced in the relevant field. In other cases
the firms and personnel chosen were se-
lected less with an eye to their competence
than to political or other considerations in
the countries of origin. The committee
claimed that a number of the foreign "ex-
perts" did not have the expertise or the qual-
ifications which the job called for and were
often learning from experience gained on
the job in Trinidad and Tobago. A great deal
of design modification had to be insisted
upon by those local professionals who were
given any opportunity to make meaningful
One of the keyweaknesses of the govem-
ment-to-government strategy in the area of
project monitoring was that inadequate
provision was made for the inputs of local
counterpart groups. The absence of com-
petent counterpart staff meant that there
was no group to whom technology could be
transferred, assuming that this goal was
being genuinely pursued by the foreign
companies involved. The committee how-
ever found that where competent local pro-
fessionals were able to detect faults or
problems or had discovered that substan-
dard material was being used contrary to
contract specifications, some foreign con-
tractors, the French in particular, ignored or
disregarded the submissions made.
In making their final assessment of the
government-to-government arrangements

(the total costs of which were expected to be
close to TT$7.5 billion), the Ballah commit-
tee agreed that the model was innovative
and theoretically desirable, but that in prac-
tice, the benefits were illusory rather than
real. Far from achieving the stated objec-
tives, the contracts "have engendered an
inordinate amount of animosity in the soci-
ety at large and among the professionals in
particular." What was regrettable too was
that the foreign countries in question, par-
ticulary France, England and Germany, had
done nothing to assist with the negotiation
of positive reciprocal arrangements for avi-
ation rights for BWIA, for the export to Eu-
rope of Trinidad and Tobago-made goods
(such as rum and sugar), or in stimulating
goodwill for Trinidad and Tobago in the in-
ternational arena.

Failure of the Strategy
In assessing overall responsibility for the
failure of the strategy, the committee as-
signed the bulk of the blame to the govern-
ment of Trinidad and Tobago which went
about negotiating the various arrange-
ments in an amateurish manner. The short-
comings were due to the fact that "there was
an absence of carefully thought-out and
well-defined development plans for the
1973-81 period and beyond." All sorts of
projects were identified without any sort of
effort having been made to prioritize them:
"Far too many projects were undertaken at
the same time. As a result, government
ministries and departments, given their
chronic staff shortages at the professional
level, were ill-equipped to cope with project
definition and conceptualization, project
designing, contract negotiation and project
management. These deficiencies were
easily and quickly recognized by foreign
agencies and appear to have been exploited
to the fullest."
The Joint Consultative Council (JCC), an
umbrella organization which brought to-
gether local professionals and contractors,
endorsed the Ballah report and called upon
the government to implement its recom-
mendations. It noted that with the downturn
of the economy, local contractors and labor
were underutilized and should be afforded
opportunities to participate meaningfully in
the government-to-government projects
that were being continued. These projects,
it advised, should be scaled down and allo-
cated to local contractors wherever possi-
ble. In response to criticisms about the past
performance of local professionals, the
JCC argued that local groups had not been
given time to "tune up" for the construction
boom and that government had instead
embarked on an expensive and unproduc-
tive strategy. Millions were spent on a num-
ber of megaprojects with little to show for it.
Government's response to the report and
to the JCC was equivocal. It agreed to scrap
18 of the projects and to review 11. The
remainder were to be continued. Modifica-
tions were proposed to ensure greater in-
volvement on the part of local consultants
and professionals as well as more effective
control of expenditure and completion
schedules. A proposal to use the govern-
ment-to-government formula only where a
government owned the technology or ex-

pertise was rejected.
The experience of the seventies, coupled
with falling oil prices and declining oil pro-
duction which reduced the country's finan-
cial capability, also had the effect of forcing
the government to return to comprehensive
multisectoral planning which Williams, in
his anxiety to get things done in a hurry, had
deemed unnecessary. In his 1977 budget
speech, Williams had taken the view that
planning had not enabled the developed
industrialized nations to avoid inflation, pol-
lution, shortages, the problem of urban
congestion, human settlement or eco-
nomic recession. Nor had it enabled devel-
oping countries to increase their rate of
growth. What was needed was action in cer-
tain key sectors.
The government now felt it necessary to
return to planning which Williams had him-
self vigorously endorsed in 1969. Cham-
bers advised Parliament that a national
planning commission and a task force
would be appointed to reappraise in a com-
prehensive manner the country's develop-
ment strategy. The appraisal was to include:
a determination as to whether the country
should continue to allocate to the energy-
based industrial sector national resources
in the same proportions as before; a deter-
mination of the optimum rate at which to
exploit our hydrocarbon reserves; a deter-
mination of more effective measures to de-
velop the non-oil sector and diversify the
export trade of the country; a determination
of more effective measures to achieve max-
imum self-sufficiency in food; a determina-
tion of the proportion of our resources
which can prudently be allocated to welfare
transfers and subsidies, or put another way
the division of revenues between consump-
tion and investment; a determination of pri-
orities within the public sector programs
and of the most appropriate rate of project
implementation; putting the infrastructure
development program on a more efficient
and manageable basis.
The task force, which is chaired by
William Demas, has not yet reported. Indi-
cations are that they would call upon the
government to curb public expenditure by
further reducing food and utility subsidies
and welfare transfers. One also expects
them to recommend the reduction of em-
ployment and a wage freeze in the public
services and to urge that the number of
development projects undertaken be lim-
ited to those which are absolutely neces-
sary. New taxation formulas may be
proposed to limit consumption and en-
courage production.
What conclusions can be drawn from this
examination of Trinidad and Tobago's re-
cent development experience? The most
appropriate comment was made by the pre-
sent prime minister who advised Parlia-
ment in his 1982 budget speech that the
experience of the seventies made it clear
that there were no shortcuts to develop-
ment: "What emerges with utmost clarity
from the experience of the 1970s and the
problems arising therefrom is that develop-
ment is a complex and long-term process
involving among other things, sacrifice,
discipline and commitment to the national
good. Believe me, there are no shortcuts."


Responses and Replies
Kruijer and Dew

Value Freedom?

Dear Colleagues:
In my book BevrUdingswetenschap:
Een Partydige Visie op de Derde Wereld
("Science of Liberation: A Partisan View
on the Third World"), August 1983, I
underline the need of social science to be
as objective as possible. Conclusions
should be based on conscientiously
gathered data whereas the reasoning
should be according to the rules of logic.
It is, however, unavoidable that the collec-
tion of data, and consequently the
conclusions, are influenced by the field of
interest of the researcher, by the kind of
phenomena to which he directs his spe-
cial attention. This choice from all
available facts is a consequence of his
political views or philosophy of life. Ed-
ward Dew, who tried to give an
explanation for the murders committed
under the regime of Mr. Bouterse, the
Supreme Commander of the Surinamese
Army, is no exception to the rule (Carib-
bean Review, vol. 12, no. 1, 1983, p. 4
ff.). His view is a partisan one, which-
needless to say-he is free to hold. The
only thing which is regrettable is that he
conceals his political and philosophical
axioms, and thus produces work of a
lower quality than that of his colleagues
who openly disclose their position. The
work of the latter is more scientific.
Dew's interpretation of the situation in
Suriname is of a right-wing character. To
explain the murders in Suriname he gives
his preference to a theory which sees
"Bouterse's commands as fundamentally
pragmatic power seekers succumbing to
the paranoia that all illegitimate leaders
are heir to." He views the so-called revolu-
tion in Suriname "as a generational
conflict and the in-fighting as a continua-
tion of the partly idealistic, partly
opportunistic rivalry that characterizes
ambitious young people everywhere." It is
a theory which stresses psychological and
group dynamic factors to the exclusion of
the power relationships and the mecha-
nism of class exploitation in Surinamese
society. Dew is not much interested in the
societal groupings behind the actors on
the Surinamese scene. His theory is of a
conservative nature, but of course nobody
can deny him the right to formulate his
own theory based on a certain segment of
A more serious objection concerns his
presentation of facts which are not true. I
can illustrate this contention with regard to

what he writes about my work in relation
to Suriname. According to Dew, the Sur-
inamese government interfered with a
research project which was carried out
under my guidance in 1969. The govem-
ment, however, actually supported the
research. In fact, left-wing groups-both
in Suriname and the Netherlands-inter-
fered, trying to obstruct the project. The
research resulted in fifteen reports on
various aspects of Surinamese society,
and these reports were made available to
social scientists in the Surinamese civil
On the basis of the reports I wrote a
book (Suriname: Neokolonie in Ri-
jksverband-Suriname: Neocolony
within the Realm of The Netherlands)
which appeared in 1973, four years after
the completion of the field work. A little
late, in my opinion, but it is an exaggera-
tion to say, as Dew did, that I used "data
from fifteen years or more years earlier."
Dew blames me for "exaggeration in
the service of agitation," but he does not
give one single example of an exaggera-
tion on my part. What Dew wrote about
efforts of the Surinamese minister of
education to facilitate my appointment to
the University of Suriname is completely
new to me. An exaggeration on his part
Mr. Dew bestows too much honor on
me when he writes that young Sur-
inamese with a radical socialist orientation
studying in the Netherlands were depen-
dent on Dutch professors like me "who
egged them on." In fact, I had very few
contacts with the Surinamese community
in my country; the most "progressive"
elements mistrusted me because of the
1969 survey which they saw as a kind of
Project Camelot. It was not before 1978
that a message from Suriname reached
me stating that my books were used for
training purposes by a progressive politi-
cal party, the VolkspartU (People's Party),
which refused to cooperate with the Bou-
terse regime.
Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Edward Dew replies:

It would appear from Kruijer's critique that
his definition of "power" is strictly an
economic one. Otherwise, to say that I
excluded power relationships from my
analysis of Suriname's recent history is to
confess to not have read much of it.
Similarly, Kruijer's definition of "societal

groupings behind the actors on the Sur-
inamese scene" (also allegedly neglected
in my analysis) must be taken narrowly to
mean "social classes," for my article
abounded with "groupings" both in sup-
port of and opposition to the so-called
revolution. If my non-class-oriented analy-
sis of the Bouterse regime was
insufficiently "scientific," then I think we
were a bit short-changed by Kruijer's
failure to provide an alternative explana-
tion for the apparent "deviationism" that
produced the December 1982 murders.
I stand corrected regarding the circum-
stances of Kruijer's 1969 research project
in Suriname. His "long march" to "libera-
tion sociology" must have been longer
even than I supposed. Nevertheless, I find
his statement of principles absurd: i.e.,
that by stating one's ideological position
one automatically elevates the level of
one's work. His unstated corollary is ob-
vious and equally absurd: i.e., that most
social science research is purposefully
deceptive and politically mischievous. 1
would contend that social scientists make
their values quite clear far more frequently
than Kruijer would admit (although per-
haps not in the simplistic "Marxist" vs.
"non-Marxist" terms that would apparently
satisfy his criterion). In any event, it would
command more respect as science to
attend to the nul hypotheses of one's
position, showing, if possible, their un-
tenability. This is what my article
I noticed that Kruijer did not dispute my
quotation from his July 1979 lecture at
the University of Suriname (published in
1980 in the Sociaal Economisch Ti-
jdschrift Suriname), to wit: "The study of
liberation should support that struggle
and make its own contribution ... a contri-
bution that consists of consciousness-
raising, organization, unarmed and armed
struggle. That struggle-you should real-
ize-must be carried out to the bitter end,
as a rule; and that means with armed
Perhaps, under the circumstances of
limited available ongoing sociological
data-gathering in Suriname, I shouldn't
have been so harsh regarding Kruijer's
persistent use of old data. Yet the speed
with which he jumps from any datum on
inequality to his ultimate liberation argu-
ment seems not so much a function of
his methodology's logic as of deeper,
more irresponsible urgings. He faults me
for not illustrating my criticism of his
writing. I thought I had quite adequately
done so with the above quotation! O


"n^^I, ly^^

.., ,~,,M^ ""'


This cartoon from the Nicaraguan government newspaper, Barricada (June 27, 1983), shows the present fear of the
Nicaraguan regime. In the first frame, Uncle Sam orders Somoza's National Guard (GN) to Nicaragua. It returns, sobbing,
after being beaten in combat. Next, the CIA-in dark glasses and trench coat-is sent to overthrow the Nicaraguan
revolution. It too returns sobbing after being expelled. In the last frame, Uncle Sam is eyeing the last ally that can be sent to
do his "dirty work" in Nicaragua-Honduras.


Theory and Practice

in Nicaragua

The Economics of Class Dynamics

By Forrest D. Colburn

Revolutions are not only significant in
themselves but provide an un-
paralleled opportunity to distinguish
the more malleable elements of the social
order from its essential components. They
allow us to see what changes can be made
in a society as well as what changes cannot.
It is in the small, less developed countries,
such as those of Central America, where
revolution continues to be an important po-
litical phenomenon. This is not to suggest
that revolutions in such countries are com-
monplace; they are not. However, they have
exploded with enough frequency to be seen
as a potential course of action by at least
some actors, and to have generated wide-
ranging debates about their potential
A scrutiny of the Nicaraguan revolution
suggests that there are severe structural
constraints on postrevolutionary regimes
that not only make it difficult to improve the
welfare of lower classes, but also difficult to
escape adoption of policies directed at dif-
ferent classes that are inconsistent with rev-
olutionary ideology and rhetoric. Small
developing countries need to import, and
therefore also export, if they are to maintain
consumption levels. If they happen to be
blessed with substantial foreign exchange
because of mineral wealth or a foreign pa-
tron, they have more latitude. But if they are
like most developing countries, they will be
highly dependent on the production of key
sectors that earn foreign exchange-re-
gardless of the ownership of these sectors.
If postrevolutionary regimes are unable
to meet consumption demands, they will
face political pressures from that part of the
population which is most sophisticated and
concentrated-and most physically proxi-
mate to the center of government-urban
residents. This sector has a disproportion-
ate share of political power. Postrevolution-
ary governments thus face a political-
economic structural problem of keeping
urban sectors satisfied while also keeping
the balance of payments within reasonable
bounds. The sector which will accordingly

Forrest D. Colburn teaches political science at
Florida International University. He has done
extensive research in Nicaragua.

need to be "squeezed" to keep the revolu-
tion economically and politically solvent will
be the rural producers, who are not organ-
ized and who do not control a vital foreign-
exchange producing crop-subsistence
and small farmers, and agricultural la-
borers. This stratum, however, should pre-
sumably most benefit by a change of
government because of its poverty. In Latin
America, urban incomes tend to be four or
five times greater than those of rural
The experience of Nicaragua also sug-
gests that the more militant the revolution,
the more likely it is to get caught between
falls in economic output and ignited ex-
pectations, and the ensuing necessity of
either compromising itself or permitting the
economy to fall to politically dangerous lev-
els. Economic disruptions are seemingly
axiomatic to revolutions. This is especially
true if elites "produce" as well as "con-
sume." Industrialization and the modern-
ization of agriculture have made this
increasingly the case. The stereotype nine-
teenth-century absentee landlord has more
often than not been replaced by the compe-
tent farmer employing modern agricultural
inputs and practices. While ruling elites still
monopolize a disproportionate share of
wealth and income in nearly all developing
countries, destroying them as a class is cer-
tainly more costly to the country than had
they been a traditional idle elite.
Nicaragua paid a high price to oust
Somoza. The UN reported that 45,000 Nic-
araguans died in the insurrection. National
economic output was estimated by the UN
Economic Commission for Latin America
(ECLA) to have dropped 6 percent in 1978
and another 24 percent in 1979. This
meant that production levels for 1979 had
fallen back to those of 1962. Somoza left a
foreign debt of US$1.64 billion, said at the
time to be the highest per capital debt in any
Latin American state. Furthermore, only
US $3.5 million was left in the state coffers-
hardly enough to pay for two days' worth of
Generous international assistance was
quickly forthcoming from countries as dis-
parate as the US, France, East and West
Germany, the Soviet Union, Bulgaria, Libya,

Cuba, Mexico and Venezuela. The foreign
debt was renegotiated on terms said to be
unprecedented in their generosity. All-im-
portant petroleum imports were provided
on concessionary terms by Mexico and
Venezuela. Between mid-1979, when the
new Nicaraguan government was formed,
and early 1982, it received about US$950
million in foreign credits, and US$250 mil-
lion in donations. Given the small size of the
country, this outpouring of assistance is
phenomenal. Approximately 49 percent of
aid has been from nonaligned Third World
countries, 32 percent from capitalist devel-
oped countries, and the remaining 19 per-
cent from socialist countries.
Despite extensive foreign assistance, the
Nicaraguan economy has floundered.
Moreover, the future does not look promis-
ing. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) rose
8.9 percent in 1981 over the depressed
level of 1980, but the GDP fell by 4.7 percent
in 1982, and no improvement is expected
for 1983. Public spending escalated rapidly
after the Sandinistas assumed authority, ris-
ing from 21 percent of the GDP in 1980 to
31 percent in 1981. However, this spending
has not been matched by greater tax re-
ceipts. In 1982, the government faced a
shortfall of half a billion cordobas in its
administrative budget.
More important, the dollar value of ex-
ports has been only about half the value of
imports since the new regime assumed
power. The balance of trade shows no sign
of improving, with the 1982 current ac-
count deficit standing at US$500 million. A
similar deficit is expected for 1983. Since
Nicaragua is a small, underdeveloped,
open economy without the option of self-
sufficiency, this is menacing. If imports and
exports are added together, they equal 70
percent of the country's GDP
The incipient industrial sector was badly
damaged during the insurrection; over 25
percent of Nicaragua's factories suffered
damage to plant and inventory. Conse-
quently, industrial recovery will be neces-
sarily slowed by the need to rebuild or
replace productive capacity. However, with
the notable exception of a 25 percent re-
duction in cattle herd, the more important
agricultural sector was only disrupted by the


fighting. Hence, restoring agricultural pro-
duction appeared not to be too difficult By
some estimates, nearly 90 percent of ex-
ports are derived from agriculture, and over
half the populace earns its living from the
Committed to more than economic re-
covery, the new regime also seeks a radical
restructuring of Nicaraguan society. As the
economic plan for 1980 outlined: "We are
setting out on a road to build not only a New
Economy, but also a New Man." By 1982
the task was outlined in more specific
terms. As a popular government slogan put
it, "Defend the Revolution for the Construc-
tion of Socialism." Examining individual
sectors within the economy suggests that it
is this attempted radical transformation of
Nicaragua, predicated on accentuated
class struggle, that has complicated eco-
nomic growth and development and not
simply the task of reconstruction, the world
recession, or counterrevolutionary pres-
sures that erupted into fighting beginning
in December 1982.
Some of the first acts of the new govem-
ment nationalized large segments of the
economy. All of the properties of the
Somozas and their accomplices were im-
mediately confiscated. In all, the measures
covered 25 percent of industrial plant in
Nicaragua and two million acres of agri-
cultural property (or roughly 25 percent of
cultivated land), most of it fully productive.
Direct foreign investment in Nicaragua is far
less significant than in many other Third
World countries, and the Sandinistas' only
move against foreign capital has been the
decrees nationalizing natural resources,
giving the state control over mining, fish-
eries and forestry. In addition, the new gov-
ernment nationalized the banking and
insurance systems-the latter because it
was unable to cope with the needs of a war-
ravished country and the former because of
the role it had played in the corrupt eco-
nomic system of the previous regime. Fi-
nally, the government assumed control
over all exports, and thus the foreign ex-
change they generated. As a consequence
of the nationalizations, the public sector
contribution to GDP rose from 15 percent in
1977 to 41 percent in 1980.

The Agro-Export Sector
While the seizure of the assets of the
Somocistas gave the state direct manage-
ment of 25 percent of the economy, the
other 75 percent remained in the hands of
the private sector. Control of banking and
foreign trade, as well as the ability to rule
simply by decree, has enabled the state to
limit the earnings of the elite which domi-
nated the agro-export sector, especially cot-
ton, the linchpin of the economy. As it
became clear that the state was committed,
in the words of one producer, to the disap-
pearance of this class, investment halted
and production began to fall. The area culti-

vated in cotton has consistently been less
than half of what it was before the revolu-
tion, leading to a precipitous drop in foreign
exchange eamings.
To prevent cotton production from col-
lapsing completely, the state has had to
make sufficient concessions to the large
producers who dominate production. Gen-
erous credit has been made available; the
state has held down wage increases for la-
bor and even used its organizations to assist
producers in obtaining labor during the
harvest season; and, most important, the
state has provided special price conces-
sions based on a 15-to-1 exchange rate

Since food is grown by
peasants, low food prices
mean low income for

instead of the 10-to-1 official exchange rate
which is used for other agricultural pro-
ducers. The rhetoric of the government
suggests that despite these concessions
large producers do not have a future in Nic-
aragua, but the concessions lead many pro-
ducers to conclude that "there is money to
be made in every tragedy," and to maintain
existing production for the most part.
The need of the state for revenue, es-
pecially foreign exchange, has prompted it
to expropriate nearly all of the wealth gener-
ated by private production when the sector,
or class, does not have the bargaining chip
of withdrawing from production. Nic-
aragua's small coffee producers demon-
strate that this is true even if the class status
of the sector in question suggests it should
benefit from the revolution. There are an
estimated 27,000 coffee producers, and 85
percent of them are small, marginal pro-
ducers with yields only a fifth or sixth of
those of most large producers. Unlike cot-
ton, coffee is a fixed investment; once plants
begin to bear they do so for years. Though
one of the rationales for the establishment
of state monopsonies was to aid small pro-
ducers, small coffee producers report a
marked deterioration in their real income.
The value of the national currency has fallen
precipitously, yet producers are paid for
their crops on the basis of a highly overrated
exchange rate minus taxes. Since small
coffee producers have a fixed investment
and lack the resources to withdraw from
production, they can, as is commonly said,
only hope for a better future.

The Rural Poor
The modern commercial farms of the
Somocistas were not broken up and dis-
tributed to peasants as expected. Instead
the state assumed management of them to
insure that they would continue to produce
the agro-exports essential for the economy,

and that the state would receive the wealth
generated. However, land not part of mod-
ern commercial farms, and more recently
confiscated land, has been distributed to
peasants organized in cooperatives since
the second year of the revolution. By July
19, 1983, the fourth year of the revolution,
305,020.6 manzanas (1 manzana
= 0.705 hectares) had been awarded for the
benefit of 20,236 families. The land dis-
tributed represents about 20 percent of Nic-
aragua's cultivated land.
Aside from coffee, peasants cultivate
food crops, especially maize and beans (the
staples of Nicaragua). For many peasants,
access to land has been a long-coveted
goal, especially in the northwestern depart-
ments where competition for land has al-
ways been intense. Unfortunately, the
government for the most part has not been
able to provide technological assistance to
small producers that would enable them to
raise yields. Raising yields would not only
contribute to national production, but also
to raising depressed incomes. There are
many difficulties though. Problems include
the sheer number of small peasant pro-
ducers and their concentration in isolated
regions, the emigration of many agri-
cultural technicians, and, perhaps most im-
portant, the competing need of state farms
for agricultural technicians and resources.
Government policies directed at peas-
ants have seemingly facilitated access to
land for peasants rather than improving the
net income from agriculture. On the other
hand, diverse changes have influenced the
costs and returns for the principal crops of
peasants-basic grains. The scarcity of for-
eign exchange, stemming in large measure
from the decreased production by the
"bourgeoisie," has driven up the price of
many goods, particularly imported ones.
The government has sought to compen-
sate by controlling the prices of many do-
mestically produced commodities-es-
pecially food. Of course since food is grown
by peasants, low food prices mean low in-
come for them. Thus, the advantages to
peasants of greater availability of land,
made possible by the seizure of large es-
tates, are offset by the low prices paid peas-
ants in order to protect consumers
suffering from shortages due to reduced
agricultural exports.
Peasants are well aware of the tradeoff,
and there is considerable resentment of
government price controls. Equally impor-
tant, low prices for controlled basic grains
have discouraged many peasants from
growing food except for their own families.
Consequently, despite the distribution of
thousands of acres of land, production of
maize and beans is below prerevolutionary
levels. By some accounts, the production of
maize is only 40 percent of previous levels.
The government itself has announced that
25 percent of this year's needed basic
grains will have to be imported.


Ironically, the sector that has perhaps
been called on to make the greatest sacri-
fices for the consolidation of the revolution
has been the poorest-landless and near-
landless agricultural workers. The Sand-
inista Front for National Liberation (FSLN)
labored for years to convince peasants that
they were being exploited and that a better
future awaited them upon the triumph of
the revolution. Yet upon seizing authority,
the FSLN switched its propaganda from
stressing the unnecessary poverty of most
Nicaraguans to the politics of austerity and
production. This change in orientation in-
volved a shift from promoting labor mili-
tancy to stressing labor discipline. Strikes
have been outlawed, and labor unions are
being pressured into joining a government-
controlled umbrella organization.
More important to laborers, the political
line of the government has resulted in lim-
itations on salaries, rejecting large salary
increases demanded by expectant workers.
Only in the first year of the revolution were
salaries for agricultural workers raised
above inflation levels. In the 1981/82 and
1982/83 agricultural seasons, general
wages were not raised at all. Comparing
wage changes with inflation suggests that
real wages may have declined by as much
as 40 percent. Unfortunately, unemploy-
ment and underemployment have also
The government's austerity politics have
inevitably created a clash with workers who
had previously been told that they deserved
a better life and that it was within their reach.
Laborers complain incessantly about rising
prices and the declining value of their in-
comes. Salaries are not appreciably differ-
ent on state enterprises, and the only
difference in working conditions is said to
be a "change of bosses." A sector that, from
an ideological point of view, should be a
bulwark of support for the regime has thus
become cynical and sometimes outright
hostile. The attitude of many agricultural
laborers is summed up by expressions of
peasant wit heard throughout rural Nic-
aragua such as, "A different bone, the same

Crisis Economics
As laudatory as the intentions of the Sand-
inista's policies may be, they have produced
severe economic problems that have
threatened the welfare of all Nicaraguans.
The discussion of rural wage laborers
graphically shows the extent to which even
sectors presumably favored by government
policies can have their welfare undermined
by national economic problems. There ap-
pears to be a classic pattern in the immedi-
ate, postrevolutionary periods of small
Third World countries. One set of policies
leads to dislocations in productive sectors,
resulting in a reduced national output.
Continued on page 40

This cartoon from the Nicaraguan government newspaper, Barricada (July 18, 1983-the day before
the fourth anniversary of the revolution), shows the revolution portrayed as a speeding bus driven by
the Sandinista Front for National Liberation (FSLN). The "bourgeoisie" repeatedly calls for the bus to
stop, but instead the "bourgeoisie" is thrown off the bus as the revolution continues on course.



James F. "Son" Mitchell

In the Center Looking for Change

By Gary Brana-Shute

S L Vincent and the Grenadines in
the Eastern Caribbean has been in-
dependent since 1979. Its econ-
omy is almost totally based on its banana
crops, which since 1979 have twice been
destroyed by hurricanes. Most economic
indicators place this country second only
to Haiti in its degree of underdevelopment
and impoverishment in the Caribbean.
Robert Milton Cato and the St Vincent
Labour Party have held constitutional
power for the past ten years, becoming
solidly entrenched.
The former British colony has earned
the unenviable reputation of having more
political parties than any other country in
the Caribbean. Five opposition parties vie
for leadership in the 13-seat House of As-
sembly, which represents a total popula-
tion of 110,000 on the tiny, 150-square-
mile island.
By far the strongest and best organized
opposition party is James F "Son"
Mitchell's New Democratic Party.
Mitchell's major stronghold is the Grena-
dines, comprising Bequia, Mustique,
Union, Cannouan, and numerous
smaller islets. In the last elections in 1979,
the Labour Party won 11 seats while
Mitchell's New Democratic Party acquired
the remaining two.
Mr Mitchell studied agronomy at the
Imperial College of TropicalAgriculture in
Trinidad, taking an advanced degree at
the University ofBritish Columbia in Can-
ada. After he returned to St. Vincent and
the Grenadines in 1966, he entered poli-
tics and was elected member of parlia-
ment for the Grenadines constituency
and still holds that position. From
1966-1972 he held several ministerial
posts (trade and agriculture, and labour)
with the Cato St. Vincent Labour Party
government During 1972-1974, he him-
self was prime minister of the country in a
coalition government. In 1975 he
founded and became president of the
New Democratic Party. He became the
leader of the opposition in 1982.
Gary Brana-Shute visited Bequia,
where Mr Mitchell resides, in June of this
year and had the opportunity to hold this

James F Mitchell.

Gary Brana-Shute: St. Vincent and the
Grenadines is approaching ten years of St.
Vincent Labour Party rule. How would you
assess this period?
James E Mitchell: To be fair to the gov-
ernment they have done a couple of things,
such as getting a few industries like the flour
mill. But that was done on the initiative of
local private enterprise and Canadian inves-
tors. In general, I am afraid the quality of life
here has not improved. In fact, unless some
radical changes are made in government
policy, the prospects for St. Vincent's future
are very bleak indeed. We witness the deteri-
oration of our roads, health services and
employment situation. There are more peo-
ple without jobs and more people who
never had a job now than when the Labour
Party first took over.
The government has this image of being
pro-business. But if you speak to the major-
ity of businessmen in the country, you'll
discover the contrary. The government has
imposed a 3 percent gross turnover tax.
This tax has ruined the investment climate
for both local and foreign businesses. We
are the only country in the-Caribbean and
probably in the world where there is a tax on
gross income which by law cannot be
passed on to the consumer. The latest fash-
ion is import restriction by licensing. But

this licensing is a racket; it doesn't operate
under the principle of free and open com-
petition. You've got to be a party supporter
to get a license. This corrupt approach is
ruining our country and creating a crisis of
confidence. There are many problems that
we can attribute to the international reces-
sion, but by and large we should not con-
centrate on blaming the rest of the world for
our internal problems. We should above all
seek to put our house in order. If we don't,
the IMF will do it for us.
GBS: It's widely held in St. Vincent and
the Grenadines that you are the head of the
only viable opposition party; you also hold
seats in the Assembly. What is your position
on the issues that have been ignored, mis-
managed or otherwise unsuccessfully
JFM: Well, some of the projects the gov-
ernment has gone into have been real flops;
I'm serious. Take, for example, the sugar
industry which they thought, or pretended
to think, was going to be the great salvation
of the country. They approached this thing
not in an economic way but in a very, I
would say, religious-political way, trying to
bring back the old-time religion. They made
the people feel that by reintroducing sugar,
its price would return to 3 cents a pound
and that the days of paying 80 cents a
pound would be over. But at the moment
sugar is selling here for 84 cents per pound.
And the whole sugar industry has turned
out to be an economic disaster, an incredi-
ble liability. First, the investmentwas around
US $10 million, and the information we
have from the Caribbean Development
Bank, that became involved in sponsoring
the project, is that the losses now are on the
order of nearly US $2 million a year and that
the overdraft is going up to around US $6
million. This government has constantly in-
vaded private enterprise, for example, pur-
chasing and operating a hotel and ships. All
of these projects have been monumental
financial disasters, which, of course, im-
pose an intolerable burden on the tax base.
On top of all this, agriculture and tourism-
our main economic bases-are hardly
growing. They were no better in 1982 than
in 1978. In short, the economic policies of
the present government are a joke.


GBS: There seems to be a legitimate
basis then for dissent on behalf of the Vin-
centian people. If that is the case, why is St.
Vincent and the Grenadines so different
from other Commonwealth Caribbean
countries with their two-party, possibly
three-party systems--and here in St. Vin-
cent and the Grenadines we seem to wit-
ness the proliferation of what we can call
paper parties?
JFM: Everyone wants to be a leader of a
party. All chiefs and no Indians. The weak-
ness in the democratic opposition started
when the present government in 1975
amended the constitution to make the wife
of a government minister, who had been
elected to the government, leader of the
opposition, as unbelievable as that may
sound-a move to keep me out of the job. If
I had been made leader of the opposition at
that time as I should have been by right, I
doubt that we would now have this disarray.
GBS: Is it unfair to ask if the ruling St.
Vincent Labour Party discriminates against
the interests of the Grenadines?
JFM: Indeed this is so-to a point that it
caused an uprising in Union Island in 1979.
We in the Grenadines have no direct access
to the aid agencies and we have great diffi-
culty making our voices heard. There is an
attitude of victimization. The Cato admin-
istration is a kind of Tammany-style politics
where the winner takes all. The Grenadines,
which has been the focus of the opposition,
has not received its share of treasury expen-
ditures in terms of services in roads or
health, or you name it. We pay more than
our share of taxes but we don't get a fair
share of expenditures.
GBS: I heard that two controversial
pieces of legislation have been introduced
by government: the Essential Services Act
and the Public Order Act. What are these
propositions and what is the reason behind
JFM: Well, the Essential Services Act was
an attempt to contain the trade unions, and
the Public Order Act was an extension of the
wicked legislation enacted during the
Union Island uprising where they intensified
the provisions for a state of emergency. In
the Public Order Act they wanted really to
run the country in a permanent state of

emergency. Criticism of the government
was a crime. There were clauses in which
you could be arrested for having the "inten-
tion" to commit an offense. Now this is a
kind of mind-reading legislation. How
could courts certify that you had an inten-
tion of being about to commit an offense? It
was absolute nonsense. It goes to show the
type of repressive regime that the govem-
ment really has become, that they would
want to enact that kind of legislation. It is
obvious that by trying that sort of thing they
were realizing they had failed on economic
and social fronts and were trying to contain
GBS: You mentioned in a publication
that you wrote entitled "What Kind of Carib-
bean Do We Want?"-which was subse-
quently read before the US Congress by the
Honorable Barney Frank of Mas-
sachusetts-something to the effect that
the enemy in the Caribbean is often within:
misdevelopment, lack of economic oppor-
tunities, failures on the economic develop-
ment front. I have seen regional statistics
that place St. Vincent second only to Haiti in
the Caribbean in virtually all social and eco-
nomic indicators. How would you assess St.
Vincent's overall development problems
and needs?
JFM: Well, first of all, I'd like to refer to
how you define "enemy," and it is very rele-
vant in response to the American attitude to
the Caribbean today. Let me quote from the
source you mention: "In my view the en-
emies are always within the gates-rigged
and unfair elections, bribery, corruption,
poverty, overpopulation, constitutions that
cheat large sections of the people, incom-
petence at the highest level and the despair
of the half-educated. Those who help us
destroy these enemies will be our friends."
Now it appears that the US only relates to
this region in regard to the possible spread
of communism. But in my view, foreign
influences (and particularly extreme com-
munist influences) prey on the underlying
causes of social unrest. The US seems to
think that the way to deal with this thing is in
a military fashion, but I think that one has to
come to terms with the economic and so-
cial problems within the country. Only then
will we find the answer.

GBS: And the much-vaunted Caribbean
Basin Initiative, what do you make of that?
JFM: Well, I stated in the US and in the
publication we referred to that I am de-
lighted that the US has found renewed inter-
est in the Caribbean and can recognize the
status of the Caribbean as a neighbor-
some people would say in the backyard; I
prefer to say at the front entrance, as much
of the US trade from the rest of the world
passes our way first. I am delighted, there-
fore, that the US is beginning to reevaluate
what we really mean to them. But the oppor-
tunities that have been offered these islands
have not really been taken up by us. I refer
specifically to the trading opportunities and
those for export manufacture to the United
States. The St. Vincent govemment, while it
purports to be a conservative business-ori-
ented government, has not even sum-
moned the Chamber of Commerce; it has
not summoned the industrialists in the
country and said "Look, we have a package
here. What can we do to start organizing
productive activity to take advantage of the
marketing opportunities in the United
States?" Nothing like this has happened as
yet. We may find the 12-year period too
short, for it might be all over by the time we
wake up to the chance the US is offering us.
GBS: A lot of countries in the Caribbean
are inviting, or are forced to invite, assembly
plant industries. How do you evaluate
their contribution to your country's
JFM: I believe we need a pluralistic ap-
proach to development; the assembly in-
dustries are part of our economic
possibilities. But they should not be prepon-
derant over inherent activity in agriculture
and tourism. We have to be careful with the
assembly industries, as they can escalate
costs in the country and at the same time
not have any long-term benefits. You might
have an industry come in, for example, and
escalate wage rates and then get to the
point where the wage rates are not viable for
that particular industry. When that industry
runs out of its tax holiday period and its
concessions itjust packs up and goes, leav-
ing influences which invade conditions in
the civil service, the police and what-have-
you, and you have an increasing burden on


your management costs.
GBS: Regional politics in the Caribbean
in the 1980s are hard to read. Some observ-
ers emphasize the growing conservatism of
regional politics: Seaga, Compton, Charles,
Cato, Chambers and the like. Do you sense
a conservative mood in the Caribbean?
JFM: Well, one must be careful about
how one defines a conservative. I think that
Americans tend to see the Caribbean and
the rest of the world in terms of the good
guys and the bad guys. You tend to look for
simple and safe answers. But they are not
always the correct answers. My party is the
center party and we believe in the politics of
change. I don't think there is much to be
conservative about in the Caribbean where
the majority of people are poor, ill fed, ill
educated and demoralized by lack of op-
portunity. You, yourself, have drawn refer-
ence to how similar we are to Haiti. Well you
could just as well call Baby Doc a conserva-
tive leader. What is there in Haiti to be con-
servative about? So in St. Vincent what is
there to be conservative about? How can
anyone of sense and conscience support a
conservative leader like Cato? Our land is
crying out for change. 1, myself, am a busi-
nessman; I own a hotel operation, as you
know, but still I know we must increase op-
portunities at all levels for everybody, lift the
standard of living all around and make this
country more rewarding for all our people.
Only in this way can we fight the communist
trend which so worries the Americans.
GBS: But there are, in fact, serious trem-
ors in the region. Leaving aside Central
America, how would you interpret events in
Grenada and Suriname?
JFM: The lessons of Grenada and Sur-
iname are very important to the entire Ca-
ribbean. First of all I would like to state that
events in neither of those countries hap-
pened just like that. One has to look at the
history. One has to remember that Bishop
in Grenada is a product of Gairy, one of your
conservatives if there ever was one. One has
to remember that at the time of indepen-
dence in Grenada, every organization in
Grenada worth calling itself an organization,
including the Chamber of Commerce, was
protesting independence under Gairy. But
the British government wanted to shrug its
shoulders and be rid of the Caribbean so
they said, "okay Gairy, go ahead." Mean-
while the people of Grenada were crying out
for an end to corruption, an end to mis-
management, an end to rigged elections.
They were complaining about how all the
institutions of government had collapsed,
the public service commission, for exam-
ple. There were no proper checks and bal-
ances in the system. There were human
rights abuses. Well, Bishop emerged out of
that. So the first and most important lesson
of Grenada is not to be found in Bishop
himself but in what he came out of. Regard-
ing the Grenada situation, at present the

most abhorrent aspect is the number of
people held for a long time in jail without
trial. And the lack of freedom of the press to
criticize what is going on there. 1, myself,
read the newspaper that was banned after
one issue, The Voice, and found it a rather
innocuous publication. What is of para-
mount importance in Grenada, as far as I
am concerned, is what kind of constitution
they will come up with. I might add that I am
quite disillusioned with the Westminster
system which was bequeathed to us by the
British. I'm anxious to see what Bishop will
do. He's got a brilliant opportunity to come

The latest fashion is
import restriction by
licensing. But this
licensing is a racket; it
doesn't operate under the
principle of free and open
competition. You've got to
be a party supporter to get
a license.

up with a constitutional model that we may
yet envy, but will he muff it? The airport
project in Grenada is a commendable one,
and I think US criticism of Grenada is mis-
pitching quite considerably when it criti-
cizes the airport. Every Grenadian who
hates communism still wants that interna-
tional airport. You don't know how much
both St. Vincent and Grenada suffer by hav-
ing to rely on the Barbados connection.
Even the right-wing government in Antigua
supports the Grenada project. I went on that
airport site with Gairy's ministers in 1968
when they were looking for funds for the
project. Don't worry about that airport. The
Cubans won't be able to move it any more
than the Russians took away the Aswan
GBS: And Suriname?
JFM: Well, those guys in Suriname are
something else. They're an awful lesson.
And you know, we needn't think that a result
like that is possible only from a single cause.
These corrupt regimes that cheat the peo-
ple-and their friends, the parasites that en-
joy temporary reward-had better bear in
mind the prospect of another Bouterse
somewhere, sometime, with a hatchet.
GBS: Are we witnessing the collapse of
the Westminster model in the West Indies
and if so, what are some of the problems
indigenous to the West Indies that make the
Westminster model problematic?
JFM: I think the recent election in Britain

foretells the collapse of the Westminster
system in Britain itself because if you look at
the results of the last British election, Mrs.
Thatcher does not represent the majority of
British people. The Social Democratic Al-
liance got about 25 percent of the vote and
the Labour Party a bit more than that. So
Mrs. Thatcher with 42 percent, and the op-
position with more than 50 percent, shows
that although they have a very powerful
government in Britain, it is unrepresentative
of the people. Now, that system may be
okay for Britain, where there are fine strong
traditions, where there is a very efficient sys-
tem of justice, where there is the best press
opinion in the world. (I have seen news-
papers from many countries, and I don't
think the level of press opinion anywhere in
the world is as meticulous as it is in Britain.)
So you have a country with beautiful checks
and balances that can function. It would be
difficult for Mrs. Thatcher to ruin Britain. But
in the West Indies, when you give that kind
of power to a politician as in our case, with
the present government having a massive
majority among only 33 percent of the elec-
torate, you are begging for trouble. I have
been paying a lot of attention to the type of
systems functioning elsewhere and I am
quite impressed with what goes on in
France and Germany. In the French system
you insure that the government and the
president are elected by more than 50 per-
cent of the people, and in Germany you
have a system which was devised at the end
of the Second World War to stop the Hitlers;
that is commendable. We need to examine
all these models. I agree with the Social
Democrats in England who say that the
economic and social progress of a country
is largely dependent on its constitutional
system, and the decline of Britain over the
years has been in part affected by the West-
minster system compared to the advances
that have been made in France and
GBS: What about the Cubans? Where do
they fit into regional and Vincentian
JFM: Well, I doubt that the Cubans can
serve as any constitutional model at all. The
Cubans are an element of force and a lot of
propaganda. One aspect of the Cuban
scene that is not sufficiently publicized is the
marked dependence of Cuba in terms of
millions of dollars a day by which the Soviet
Union props up the Cuban economy. If the
Cubans are a model of a kind of develop-
ment, they are a model of dependence.
Cuba is being kept in the Caribbean and
Latin America as a show piece. It has no
inherent strength of its own. But neverthe-
less, it is an area of propaganda interest in
the region. And, of course, its military ca-
pacity cannot be ignored.
GBS: What would you want the people of
the United States to understand about your
country and the Caribbean?


JFM: That is a very large question. But
first of all you must realize that the majority
of the people in the United States neither
know nor care about any particular island in
the Caribbean. The Caribbean is a vague
area for holidays. But insofar as US foreign
policy is concerned, I would hope that first
of all the US has good diplomatic represen-
tation in this area so that it can get people to
understand what our problems are. I at-
tended a symposium on the Caribbean
Basin plan at which I discovered that the
mayor of Miami was particularly concerned
because his vision of the Caribbean-prob-
ably quite right, after Mariel and Haiti-was
that there are millions of people out there,
anxious and willing to land in Miami at the
drop of a hat. The only wayto stop that trend
from developing is to make sure that people
can live fulfilling lives in the Caribbean. And
we need US assistance in this regard. The
United States is a very powerful country,
and it appalls us what the US can do and the
opportunities that are being missed. It is not
for me to tell the US they shouldn't spend all
their money in El Salvador, as they are
doing, but certainly if they spent those mil-
lions in the Caribbean, I would think that the
Caribbean would be a much safer place. It
seems the US only becomes concerned
with expenditures in the area when an ex-
plosive scene develops, which, of course, is
too late when all the underlying currents are
surfacing. But as a politician, and as a politi-
cian of the center looking for change, the
kind of problem I face is really the attitude of
the US to parties of change. Again, as 1 said
in my CBI presentation, the parties in the
Caribbean which are the natural allies of the
US are those parties seeking change-not
those which are trying to maintain the sta-
tus quo of overpopulation, unemployment,
bribery and corruption, imposing so-called
stability on a starving people. These parties
are not serving the long-term interests of
the Caribbean or the United States. You
have to understand that there are other non-
communist parties which are prepared to
work for orderly progress in the region. Ijust
wish that people would try to understand
the problems we face. I am being long-
winded on this, but in a way the attitude of
the US, whereby it casts out any political
party that is not safe by its own definition (in
other words they squeeze the center) is the
same attitude, ironically, of the commu-
nists. They do not want to see parties in
power that will bring about reform. So in
the long run, the attitude of the extreme
right of the US is similar to the extreme left
in the Caribbean. With different instruments
you are playing the same tune. The US
should realize that it is in its own best inter-
est to support the center. Playing it "safe,"
supporting the devil, you are supporting
what the people despise.
GBS: You were prime minister for a time
in the early 1970s. What are your chances

of recapturing that position?
JFM: I am not a prophet. I am working
towards winning the next election and I am
fortunate that we have a good team of
young people and experienced people in
various disciplines working in the party.
When I look back on the problems we had
in the last election-the eruption of the
Soufriere volcano and all the AID funds that
came in and which were used as bribes-
well, all those disasters had an impact on
the election. If we can contain the bribery

and make sure there are no covert actions
intending to finance bribery; if we can have
a free and fair election, well, then 1 think that
our chances are quite good.
GBS: What if you lose?
JFM: One day, like Schweitzer, I hope to
find peace beyond all understanding. O

Gary Brana-Shute teaches anthropology at
The College of Charleston in Charleston, S.C.
He has worked widely in Suriname and the
Anglophone Caribbean.

CAI?BBEAN rlevie/13


On the Nature of Zombie Existence

The Reality of a Voudou Ritual

By Bernard Diederich

his was only a dirt grave when I
was buried here; they built this
later," the heavy-set farmer said
of the simple concrete tomb already
cracked with age. Sitting on a neighboring
tomb in the searing Haitian sun he pointed
to his epitaph written crudely in the wet
cement 21 years ago: "lc Repose Clair-
vius Narcisse."
The croquemorts (gravediggers) paid
the zombie no heed and chattered at the
same rhythm as the Madame Sara birds
nesting in the campeche trees in the little
cemetery of Benetier, straddling the main
highway to north Haiti two miles from
Narcisse's home at I'Estere, a major
market town in the rice-growing area of
the Artibonite Valley. "When they bur-
ied me here Icould hear everything that
was happening, but I couldn't move,
speak or do anything." Pointing to a
lumpyscar on his rightcheek, Narcisse
said in his slow deliberate manner,
"One of the nails in my coffin did this; it
went through my cheek." Leaving the
cemetery Narcisse affectionately patted
a large walk-in style tomb on the edge of
the road. It was painted aquamarine and
several iron letters were missing
from his father's name,
Francois Narcisse. "This
is my mother's tomb,
it was built after I

Haitians in the Artibonite Valley or elsewhere
question the fact that Clairvius Narcisse, 65,
did "die" in 1962, spent two years as a zom-
bie, and escaped to finally return home in
1980, after wandering for 16 years. Haitians
don't have to see the hospital admission
sheet noting that Clairvius Narcisse was ad-
mitted to the Albert Schweitzer hospital 30
April 1962 at 9:45 PM and died 2 May 1962
at 1:15 PM of "malignant hypertension and
uremia." Nor do they need to see his death
certificate which is on record at the National
Archives; most Haitians believe in zombies.
In Haiti the supernatural is supreme, sel-
dom challenged by the average Haitian. It is
a land with an entire phantasmagoria of
strange beliefs that can both baffle and
handicap scientific investigators because
so much of the imaginary is tightly woven
with reality. Myth is as mighty as fact. The
country's rich oral folkloric tradition is
deeply embedded in the Haitian's mind and
cannot easily be separated.
Into this twilight zone, in 1961, the year
before Narcisse was made into a zombie,
stepped a young Haitian psychiatrist, fresh
from Montreal's McGill University. Lamar-
que Douyon, M.D., today is Haiti's leading
psychiatrist and best known zombiologist.
Yet despite the long years of research, on his
own time, into the zombie phenomenon, he
admits he is not yet "half way" along the
road to discovering all there is to know
about the zombie-making process. Years of
false starts and traveling widely throughout
rural Haiti to investigate zombie sightings-
he estimates he has treated at least 15 per-
sons who were falsely branded zombies for
a wide spectrum of illnesses-were finally
rewarded four years ago with the ap-
pearance of three who have been classified
genuine zombies.

Jay Ausherman, wife of the Baptist Mission-
ary at Passereine, recieved news one day in
April 1979 from poor peasants belonging
to her mission, that a female zombie had
appeared in the Ennery marketplace. Aus-
herman traveled to Ennery and asked the
police to allow her to talk with the newly
discovered zombie. The zombie was Fran-

cina llleus known as "Ti-Femme." Ausher-
man recalled, "I called her Ti-Femme. She
finally looked up from where she was squat-
ting like a living dead person." The judge of
Ennery, not quite sure what to do with a
legally dead person who was rejected by her
family and village, gave the Aushermans
legal custody of Ti-Femme. When the news
reached Port-au-Prince that an American
Baptist Missionary had taken custody of a
female zombie, Dr. Douyon drove to Pas-
sereine to check out yet another zombie
Douyon was skeptical. Ti-Femme was
extremely thin and kept her head bowed.
She did not respond to questioning and
showed obvious psychomotor retardation.
Douyon began his research. Her death cer-
tificate read: "Francina llleus deceased
Monday 23 of February 1976 at 6 in the
evening at age 30 at locality of Camathe.
Responsible parents: Marius her brother.
Signed Chef de Section." She had suffered
digestive problems and had been taken to
the Saint Michel de l'Atalaye Hospital, her
relatives confirmed. Several days after her
release she died. There was no doctor to
pronounce her dead so the chef de section
signed the death certificate.
Savanne Caree, the small village in which
Ti-Femme lived, got its name from the fact
that it was nestled like a square savannah
among hills. The surrounding hills seem to
generate a special kind of claustrophobia
and conservatism in which Ti-Femme did
not fit. She became a market woman
(marchande) and was rebellious by nature.
Her mother had chosen a husband for her.
Ti-Femme broke the tradition of the little
village and took a lover with whom she had
a child, Josiane. Ti-Femme's mother is sus-
pected of asking a bocor (witchdoctor) to
make her into a zombie. After she "died"
and was zombified she was given to the
man her family wanted for her and by whom
she had three children during her zombie
period. All three died. In April 1979, she
escaped and reappeared in the mar-
ketplace in Ennery.
Dr. Douyon convinced the Aushermans
to allow him to take Ti-Femme with him to
Port-au-Prince where he could help her re-

Francine Illeus ("Ti-Femme").

Clairvius Narcisse.

Left, Clairvius Narcisse gazes at his tomb; Above, Ti-Femme with missionary Jay Ausherman;
Right, Dr. Lamarque Douyon with Narcisse and Ti-Femme.

Bernard Diederich lived in Haiti for 14 years as
editor of The Haiti Sun. A Time magazine
correspondent, he is the author of Papa Doc
(McGraw Hill, 1968), Trujillo, The Death of the
Goat (Little Brown, 1978) and Somoza and the
Legacy of U.S. Involvement in Central America
(E. P Dutton, 1981).

yon recalls, "Ti-Femme started to commu-
nicate and do menial work." During his
three years studying her, she received no
psychotropic drugs or any other medica-
tion, except vitamins. Douyon says he tried
hypnosis and narcosis to speed up her re-
cuperation to no avail. Most important, he
feels, was the process of resocialization he
carried on with her. Exposed to everyday
situations, she came in contact with more
and more people, and became animated
when she was taken to the marketplace,
which she loved. She would ask Douyon for
money to buy things and carry on transac-
tions. She could count and her mental pro-
cesses partially returned. On those trips
when he took her backto her village, people
recognized her, including her common-law
husband, who had left her for another
woman prior to her "death". The last time
they returned to the village and asked peo-
ple if they wanted her to come back and live
with them they protested, "No, no, Doctor
Douyon can take care of her. I'll never stay in
the same place with a dead person."
The whole story of Ti-Femme's zom-
bification has not been told yet; too many
people are involved; both her parents are
suspect. She broke village taboos and they
could still do her harm.

The year after Ti-Femme appeared, Dou-

yon heard on the radio of a man who had
"died" and suddenly reappeared in the Ar-
tibonite. He telephoned Radio Nationale
to learn the young announcer was a
nephew of the "dead" man. "I immediately
got into my car and went to see him and
asked the family to give him to me. Narcisse
spent two years at my home." That year
another zombie appeared, Natagette
Joseph, but she escaped. Found later, she
has been interned at the tuberculosis center
outside the city. Her case has not been stud-
ied at any length.
The third of eleven children, Narcisse
speaks in a slow deliberate manner. He said
he had been "sold" and then "killed" by two
of his brothers who wanted what was his-
land. He described how he "died" in 1962
after having taken sick on a Sunday with
shortness of breath and high blood pres-
sure. After two days of no progress from
home remedies, he was taken to the Albert
Schweitzer Hospital at Deschapelles where
he died on Wednesday. His body was placed
in the morgue for a brief time before it was
handed over to his family who refused to
have an autopsy performed. "My funeral
was on Thursday and I was dug up on Sat-
urday," he recalls. Douyon doubts Narcisse
could have spent two and a half days in his
grave and survived.
"The earth opens and then you sit up.
They slapped me three times. Then they


made me smell something. I was taken to
the house of the bocor and he cured my
cheek where the nail of the coffin went
through. I was then judged for eight days."
He was questioned about the problems he
had with those who wanted him dead. As a
zombie he was put to work in the fields,
weeding and planting. At first, he said, he
lived in a big hangar with 151 other zom-
bies, nine of whom were women. They were
fed a saltless diet twice a day. But then in
1964, in a rage-something which rarely
occurs with someone in the zombie state-
one of the zombies, according to Narcisse,
killed the bocor with his hoe. His widow
gave them salt and freed them. Along with
the other zombies, he was placed in an alms
house in Cap Haitien called Asile Vincent.
From his account, while he was a zombie
the slightest thing seemed impossible, an
insurmountable obstacle. He described the
feeling as his eyes being "turned in," trying
to explain how his sense of perception of
both things and events was distorted. One
of the doctors who examined him in 1980
recalled that he described a small stream on
the land he was working on as a large river, a
sea impossible to cross. But when he left,
after receiving salt, he saw the water in its
true proportion as a stream. "The slightest
chore required great effort," he explained.
For this reason the bocor's death may not
have happened as he described it. Douyon

says not everything the ex-zombies say can
be accepted as true.
Narcisse had lived on a dusty lakou not
far from the main road and major market
town in what today is the rich Artibonite rice-
growing valley. This valley was not always so
productive. It was only in the mid-1950s
when the Peligre Dam was built to hamess
the Artibonite River that this once dried-up
waterless countryside became prized farm
land. As people tell it in l'Estere, Narcisse
was killed because he refused to sell the
family land. The Artibonite is well-known as
strong voudou country. His sister Silia com-
plains that while Narcisse knows the posi-
tion of his gardens, he can no longer work
the land because "our land is in the hands
of Atti6 and other white people." She claims
15 carreaux of theirs were taken from
them. Though they have papers to prove
ownership they still cannot get the land
back. The family says after a few years of
wandering, Narcisse had settled down in
the North and managed to send word to
them he was alive but could not return.
"Perhaps the one who killed him was here.
That person could have pushed him fur-
ther," explains his sister Angelina. When
Narcisse showed up in the l'Estere market
his presence caused such panic that police
had to take him into custody. Around the
corner from the Narcisse lakou of mostly
mud and wattle thatched roofcailles (huts)

is the little carpentry shop where his casket
was made in 1962. Not only does boss
Adrien recall the casket but so does one of
the workers who was just a lad then.

Dr. Douyon
Douyon's major efforts now are not directed
in substantiating their claim to the title of
zombie; he accepts them as the genuine
article. What concerns him is the process of
zombification. His research has led him into
eerie midnight rendezvous with bocors and
Baron Samedi, Guardian of the Cemeteries.
Douyon often treads on dangerous ground
and local taboos, as zombification is
against the law. Article 249 of the Code
Penal says, "Also to be termed intention to
kill, by poisoning, is that use of substances
whereby a person is not killed but reduced
to a state of lethargy, more or less pro-
longed, and this without regard to the man-
ner in which the substances were used or
what were their later result If, following the
state of lethargy, the person is buried, then
the attempt will be termed murder."
So fearful are rural Haitians of being
made into unwilling zombies, which they
fear as a fate worse than death-the terrible
servitude of slavery known to their ances-
tors-that they take all kinds of precautions,
even to "killing the person for a second
time." They have been known, before burial,
Continued on page 43


he anthropological and popular liter-
ature on Haiti is replete with refer-
ences to zombies. According to
these accounts, zombies are the living
dead: innocent victims raised in a co-
matose trance from their graves by malev-
olent voudou priests (bocors), and forced
to toil indefinitely as slaves. Although one
author attempted to prove that zombies ex-
ist, most have rather uncritically assumed
the phenomenon to be folklore. Neverthe-
less, virtually all writers acknowledge that
the majority of the Haitian population be-
lieves in the physical reality of zombies.
As long ago as 1938, Zora Hurston, a
student of Franz Boas at Columbia Univer-
sity, suggested that there could be a mate-
rial basis for the zombie phenomenon (cf.
Tell My Horse). Having visited what she
believed to be a zombie in a hospital near

Gonaive in North Central Haiti, she and the
attendant physician "discussed at great
length the theories of how zombies came to
be. It was concluded that it is not a case of
awakening the dead, but a matter of the
semblance of death induced by some drug
known to a few: some secret probably
brought from Africa and handed down gen-
eration to generation. The men know the
effect of the drug and the antidote. It is
evident that it destroys that part of the brain
which governs speech and willpower. The
victim can move and act but cannot formu-
late thought."
Although Hurston alone gave credence
to this hypothesis, subsequent investigators
certainly knew of the poison. Leybum (in
The Haitian People, 1941) refers to "those
who believe that certain bocors know how
to administer a subtle poison to intended
victims which will cause suspended anima-
tion and give the appearance of death." Ac-
cording to M6traux (in Voodoo in Haiti,
1959), the houngan (voudou priests) know
the secret of certain drugs which induce a
lethargic state indistinguishable from
death. Courlander (in The Drum and the
Hoe, 1960) adds, "the victim is not really
dead but has succumbed to a virulent poi-
son which numbs all the senses and stops
bodily function but does not truly kill. Upon
disinterment, the victim is given an antidote
which restores most physical processes but
leaves the mind in an inert state, without will
or the power to resist"
Though the anthropologists remained
equivocal, the Haitians themselves recog-
nize the existence of the poison with some
assurance. If it now seems remarkable that
the reports of the poison were not properly
investigated, there are, in fact, good histor-
ical reasons for the oversight. They ap-
peared during a period when Haitian social
scientists, trained in the tradition of cultural
relativism and objective analysis, were most

Botanist E. Wade Davis is a researcher with
the Botanical Museum of Harvard University,
presently doing research in the Brazilian Ama-
zon. This papers an edited version of a longer
article published in the Journal of Eth-
nophramacology. @ Copyright 1983 by E.
Wade Davis.


The Ethnobiology of the

Haitian Zombie

On the Pharmacology of Black Magic

By E. Wade Davis

anxious to promote the legitimacy of peas-
ant institutions. These intellectuals in par-
ticular were repelled by the sensational
writings of an earlier decade which, in their
minds, had both slanderously misrepre-
sented the Haitian peasantry and ra-
tionalized the American occupation of
1915-1935. The subject of zombies, which
had figured so prominently in the earlier
writings, simply did not interest them. Refer-
ring no doubt to Seabrook's The Magic
Island (1929), Jules Faine wrote in Phi-
lologie Creole (1937) "Such legends, cir-
cumstantially garbed and presented as
actual facts by certain unscrupulous au-
thors, have served as the theme of books
which have made a great commotion in
foreign countries. Taking advantage of the
credulity of a public avid for exotic matters,
for mysteries, for the supernatural, these
writers have gained, in certain circles, the
greatest success of publicity."
The case for the poison was, indeed, sus-
pect on several grounds. Many informants
insisted that the actual raising of the zombie
depended solely on the magical powers of
the bocor. Moreover, despite the rich body
of anecdotal lore about zombies, no physi-
cian had examined a legitimate case. Nor
had samples of the elusive poison been
obtained for scientific analysis.

Zombie Poison
Scientific interest in the zombie poison was
rekindled by the recent surfacing of new
cases of reputed zombies, under the care of
Haitian psychiatrist Lamarque Douyon. In
one case there was the suggestion that the
patient had been made a zombie by abocor
who had used a poison. Physicians close to
the case recognized that the proper drug,
administered in correct dosage, could
lower the metabolic state of an individual to
such a point that he would appear dead.
Fully cognizant of the profound medical po-
tential of such a drug, they asked me in
1982 to investigate the composition of the
poison in Haiti.
During the course of three expeditions,
the complete preparation of five poisons
used to make zombies was documented at
four widely separated villages in Haiti. Al-
though each geographical region has a

unique poison formula, botanical and zoo-
logical determinations of the voucher spec-
imens indicate that the principal ingre-
dients are consistent in three of the four
localities. The plants involved include some
with well-known, pharmacologically active
constituents and several capable of severely
irritating the skin of the victim. Two species
are recognized hallucinogens: Datura
Metel L. andDatura Stramonium L, both
known in Haiti as concombre zombi-the
"zombie cucumber." These two plants con-
tain a number of potent alkaloids, such as
scopolamine and atropine, the ingestion of
which may result in amnesia among other
effects. Seeds from either species of
Datura may be ground into the zombie
poison. A third species commonly used in
the various preparations, mucuna pru-
riens (L.) DC pois a gratter, contains psy-
chotomimetic constituents and may have
hallucinogenic activity. The most consis-
tent plant ingredient in all the various prepa-
rations of the poison is tcha-tcha (Albizia
Lebbeck L.), the chemistry of which is
poorly known.
The irritant plants added to the prepara-
tions include species with urticating hairs,
anacardiaceous plants that produce severe
dermatitis, an aroid with irritating needles of
calcium oxalate in its tissues, and a number
of species with spines. The addition of the
irritants seems to be related to the way in
which the poison is applied. Though top-
ically active, any one of the variations of the
poison is particularly effective if inhaled or
applied to an open wound. One informant
suggested pricking the victim's skin with a
thorn. Another added ground glass to the
preparation. Several of the plants produce
such severe irritation that the victim, in
scratching himself or herself, may cause
open wounds. The poison may be applied
more than once to the victim, and undoubt-
edly these self-inflicted wounds increase
susceptibility to subsequent doses.
-Although a number of lizards, tarantulas,
non-venomous snakes and millipedes are
added to the various preparations, there are
five consistent animal ingredients to note;
burnt and ground human remains, a small
tree frog, a polychaete worm, a large New
World toad (Bufo marinus L.), and one or

more species in two genera of puffer fish.
Bufo marinus has been described as a
"veritable chemical factory"; its paratoid
glands secrete at least 26 highly active com-
pounds. These include: cardioactive
steroids known commonly as bufogenins
and bufotoxins; phenylethylamine bases
and derivatives such as dopamine, adrena-
line, noradrenaline; and tryptamine bases
and derivatives such as serotonin,
cinobufagin (a powerful local anaesthetic)
and bufotenine.
As a psychoactive agent, Bufo marinus
has a long history in the circum-Caribbean
region. Bones of this toad were so common
in middens at the site of San Lorenzo, Mex-
ico that it has been suggested that the
Olmec used Bufo marinus as a halluci-
nogen. At late post-classic Maya sites on
Cozumel, Mexico, as much as 99 percent of
all amphibian remains have been identified
asBufo marinus. The possible contempo-
rary use of the toad as a hallucinogen in
southern Vera Cruz, Mexico has also been
Hallucinogen or not, there is little ques-
tion that, whether ingested or applied top-
ically, the chemical constituents of Bufo
marinus are potent poisons. Recent analy-
sis of the toad's skin has yielded substances
resembling those found in African and
South American arrow poison prepara-
tions. As an arrow poison, it acts as a mus-
cle relaxant and affects the respiratory
center; in large doses, it can cause death.
Howard Fabing was the first to experi-
ment with bufotenine in the 1950s. He
found that injections of bufotenine into
human subjects induced a state that coin-
cided well with literary descriptions of the
"Berserkers" of Norse legends. He charac-
terized that state as one of frenzied rage,
reckless courage and enhanced physical
strength, and concluded that the uniden-
tified substance ingested by the Berserkers
before their raids was a bufotenine-contain-
ing creature. The description of his experi-
mental subject closely matches character-
izations of zombies when they first come
out of the grave. Informants report that the
zombie must be immediately beaten and
bound with rope and that as many as three
men may be required to control him or her.

CA"BBcAN "iEVw/19

The Tetrodotoxins
The most interesting and potent ingre-
dients in the poisons are the puffer fish.
Haitians recognize three varieties: the fou-
fou (Diodon hystrix); the bilan (cf. Di-
odon holacanthus); and the crapaud de
mer or seatoad (Sphoeroides test-
udineus). These three species belong to a
large pantropical order of fish (Tetraodon-
tiformes), many of which have deadly
nerve toxins known as tetrodotoxin in their
skin, liver, ovaries and intestines.
The biogenesis of the tetrodotoxins
within these fish is not yet understood, but it
is of some significance to the zombie phe-
nomenon. Of considerable interest is the
reported variability of the toxin levels in nat-
ural populations of puffer fish. Toxin levels
differ not only according to sex, seasonality
and geographical locality, but from indi-
vidual to individual within a single popula-
tion. It is possible that the puffer fish, in
addition to synthesizing tetrodotoxins en-
dogenously, may serve as transvectors of
either tetrodotoxin or ciguatoxin, a poison
of uncertain origins that contaminates
many marine fish. The symptoms of
ciguatera poisoning are similar to those of
In Haiti, although each zombie poison
has a recognized antidote, the ingredients
and preparations of these antidotes are
completely inconsistent from one locality to
another. Moreover, the antidotes are not
used to resurrect the zombie from the
grave, but rather as treatments to prevent
the victim from dying from the poison in the
first place. Virtually all of the ingredients in
the recognized antidotes are either consid-
ered chemically inert, or are used in insig-
nificant quantities. However, when the
zombies are taken from the grave they are
force fed a paste made from sweet potato,
cane syrup and concombe zombi (Datura
Stramonium or Datura Metel). These
daturas contain atropine and scopolamine
and hence may be serving as an effective
but unrecognized antidote to the zombie
poison. It is significant to note that this pos-
sible antidote is one of the most potent
hallucinogenic plants known. Datura in-
toxication may be characterized as an in-
duced state of psychotic delirium. It is in the
midst of this intoxication that the zombies
are lead away to their workplace.
The effects of tetrodotoxin poisoning
have been well documented. The most fa-
mous cause of puffer poisoning is the well-
known culinary delicacy, the Japanese
fugu fish. In eating these fish the Japanese
accept the obvious risks because they enjoy
the exhilarating physiological aftereffects,
which include sensations of warmth, flush-
ing of the skin, mild paresthesias of the
tongue and lips, and euphoria. Because of
its popularity as a food, and the relatively
high incidence of accidental poisonings,
the fugu fish has generated an enormous

medical and biomedical literature. Turning
to that literature for clinical descriptions and
case histories, one is immediately struck by
the parallels to the zombie phenomenon.
In describing his experience to me, one
of the zombie patients recalled remaining
conscious at all times, and although com-
pletely immobilized, could hear his sister's
weeping as he was pronounced dead. Both
at and after his burial, his overall sensation
was that of floating above the grave. He
remembered as well that his earliest sign of
discomfort before entering the hospital was
difficulty in breathing. His sister recalled that

The most interesting and
potent ingredients in the
poisons are the puffer fish.

his lips had tumed blue. He did not know
how long he had remained in the grave
before the zombie makers came to release
The onset of the poison itself was de-
scribed by several houngan as the feeling
in victims "of insects crawling beneath your
skin." Another houngan offered a poison
that would cause the skin to peel off the
victim. Popular accounts of zombies claim
that even the female zombies speak with
deep husky voices, and that all zombies are
glassy eyed. Several houngan suggested
that the belly of the victim swells up after he
or she has been poisoned.
The patient's medical symptoms at the
time of his "death" included digestive trou-
bles with vomiting, pronounced respiratory
difficulties, pulmonary edema, uremia, hy-
pothermia, rapid loss of weight and hyper-
tension. Note that these symptoms are
quite specific and certainly peculiar.
The literature on tetrodotoxication fur-
nishes the following specific description of
the effects. "The onset and types of symp-
toms in puffer poisoning vary greatly, de-
pending upon the person and amount of
poison ingested. However, symptoms of
malaise, pallor, dizziness, paresthesias of
the lips and tongue and ataxia develop. The
paresthesias which the victim usually de-
scribes as a tingling or prickling sensation
may subsequently involve the fingers and
toes, then spread to other portions of the
extremities and gradually develop into se-
vere numbness. In some cases the numb-
ness may involve the entire body, in which
instances the patients have stated that it felt
as though their bodies were floating. Hyper-
salivation, profuse sweating, extreme weak-
ness, headache, subnormal temperatures,
decreased blood pressure, and a rapid weak
pulse usually appear early. Gastrointestinal
symptoms of nausea, vomiting, diarrhea

and epigastric pain are sometimes present.
Apparently the pupils are constricted during
the initial stage and later become dilated. As
the disease progresses the eyes become
fixed and the pupillary and corneal reflexes
are lost.... Shortly after the development
of paresthesias, respiratory distress be-
comes very pronounced and ... the lips,
extremities, and body become intensely
cyanotic. Muscular twitching becomes pro-
gressively worse and finally terminates in
extensive paralysis. The first areas to be-
come paralyzed are usually the throat and
larynx, resulting in aphonia, dysphagia and
complete aphagia. The muscles of the ex-
tremities become paralyzed and the patient
is unable to move. As the end approaches
the eyes of the victim become glassy. The
victim may be comatose but in most cases
retains consciousness, and the mental fac-
ulties remain acute until shortly before
death." [B. W Halstead, Poisonous and
Venomous Marine Animals of the World,
Several authors report this peculiar state
of profound paralysis during which time
most other faculties remain normal; others
state that a degree of anesthesia accom-
panies the paralysis; one believes that anes-
thesia occurs only at or near fatal doses.
One patient who recovered stated that he
had "felt numb from neck to toes, with the
feeling of ants crawling over him and biting
him." One researcher stated that respiratory
distress was the first symptom of the poi-
soning. Another reports that large skin blis-
ters appear by the third day after exposure to
the tetrodotoxins; by the ninth day the skin
begins to peel off. The poison acts on the
central nervous tissues, according to some
investigators; several note that the drug has
a sedative, narcotic effect on the brain.

Similar Symptoms
Not only do the individual symptoms of
zombification and tetrodotoxication sound
remarkably similar, but entire case histories
from the Japanese literature read like ac-
counts of zombification. Halstead cited over
twenty cases which warrant investigation;
two are very pertinent. In 1880, for example,
it was reported that "A gambler ostensibly
died by eating fugu, and the body was
placed in storage for the officials to exam-
ine. About seven days later the man be-
came conscious and finally recovered. The
victim claimed to have recalled the entire
incident and stated that he was afraid he
would be buried alive. In the second case,
the victim was considered dead and was
placed on a cart and shipped to a cre-
matorium in a nearby town. The man re-
covered from the cart and walked away. This
latter victim also claimed to have been
aware of what was happening."
Another relevant case study comes from
the Mexican historian Francisco Javier
Clavijero. While searching for a new mis-


sion site in Baja, California, soldiers came
upon a campfire where indigenous fisher-
men had left a roasted piece of the liver of
some botete (Sphoeroides lobatus). De-
spite the warnings of their guides, the sol-
diers divided the meat. One of them ate a
small piece, another chewed his portion
without swallowing and the third only
touched it. The first died within thirty min-
utes, the second soon after, and the third
remained unconscious until the next day.
This account illustrates certain salient
features of puffer fish poisoning. Although
tetrodotoxin is one of the most toxic non-
protein substances known (as an anes-
thetic, the minimum detectably effective
dose of tetrodotoxin is 1/160,000 of that of
cocaine), like any drug, its effects depend
on dosage and the way it is administered.
Two Japanese researchers distinguished
four degrees of poisoning. The first two are
characterized by progressive anesthesia
and loss of motor control. The third degree
includes paralysis of the entire body, diffi-
culty in breathing, cyanosis, hypotension,
but with clear consciousness. In the final
degree failure of the respiratory system
leads to death. If the poisonous material is
ingested, the onset of third degree symp-
toms is usually very rapid. Generally a crisis
is reached after no more than six hours. If
the victim survives that period, he or she
may expect a complete recovery. When ap-
plied topically, however, the tetrodotoxins,
though active, are less virulent.
Haitian bocors recognize the potency of
their preparations, and acknowledge, at
least implicitly, the importance of proper
application and correct dosage. Although
they believe that the creation of a zombie is
a magical act, and that the poison always
kills, they note that certain combinations of
poisons are "too explosive" or that they "kill
too completely." Each poison must be care-
fully "weighed"; a notion that has both spir-
itual and practical connotations. One
houngan said he had three zombie poi-
sons, all of which included the seatoad; one
poison killed immediately, another caused
the victim to waste away slowly, whereas the
third caused the victim's skin to peel away
before death.
The poison is never put into the victim's
food; rather it is applied repeatedly to the
skin, open wounds, or it may be blown
across the victim so that he or she inhales it.
In preparing the poisons every effort is
made not to touch it. Face masks are worn,
and an oily emulsion is applied to the ex-
posed parts of all participants.
That the Mexican soldiers in Clavijero's
account were poisoned by roasted meat
exemplifies one final point especially rele-
vant to the way the zombie poisons are pre-
pared in Haiti. Frying, stewing, boiling or
baking do not denature the tetrodotoxins. In
every documented preparation of the poi-
son, the toad and puffer fish are sun dried
and then placed on hot coals along with

various fresh animals and human remains.
All the animals are broiled to a soft, oily
consistency and then placed together with
the plant ingredients in a mortar. All the
components of the poison are pounded to a
granular consistency and then sifted to pro-
duce the final product.
The poisons which I collected during my
first two expeditions to Haiti are currently
being analyzed at the Karolinska Institutet in
Stockholm and at the Universite de
Lausanne, Switzerland. Initial experiments
with rats and primates conducted by Dr.
Leon Roisin at the New York State Psychi-
atric Institute have been most promising.
Topical applications to the shaved belly of a

The Haitian bocors
recognize the potency of
their preparations, and
acknowledge the
importance of proper
application and correct

monkey produced local edema, particularly
where the skin had been nicked by the tech-
nicians. Injected intraperitoneally into rats
in dosages of five miligrams per one hun-
dred grams of body weight, the poison in-
duced a cataleptic state. Pulse rate
increased very rapidly and then gradually
decreased, with respiration becoming shal-
lower. A needle put into the tail of the test
animal provoked no pain response.
Though the EEG continued to register cen-
tral nervous system activity, the rat became
completely immobilized. Lower dosages of
the poison caused pronounced reduction
in activity and local paralysis, from which
the rats recovered with no apparent signs of
permanent injury. Based on dosages ad-
ministered to rats, it can be suggest that
the equivalent of an intraperitoneal dose of
3.5 grams of crude poison might put a 160
pound human into a comatose, cataleptic
These preliminary laboratory results, to-
gether with what we know from the field and
from the biomedical literature, suggest
strongly that there is an ethnophar-
macological basis to the zombie phe-
nomenon. The consistent and critical
ingredients in the poison are the puffer fish,
which contain known toxins capable of
pharmacologically inducing physical states
similar to those characterized in Haiti as
zombification. That the peculiar symptoms
described by the zombie patient match so
closely the quite particular symptoms of
tetrodotoxin poisoning documented in the
Japanese literature suggests that he was
exposed to the poison. If this does not prove
that he was a zombie, it does, at least, sub-

stantiate his story.

Voudou Theology
In and of itself, the formula of the zombie
poison explains very little about the process
of zombification in the Haitian peasant soci-
ety. The full significance of the ethnophar-
macological discovery will become appar-
ent when zombies are considered within the
context of voudou theology.
According to voudou belief, man is a
composite of five aspects: the z'tolle, the
gros bon ange, the ti bon ange, the
name, and the corps cadavre. The latter is
the body itself, the flesh and the blood. The
name is the spirit of the flesh that allows
each cell of the body to function. Gros bon
ange is the life force that all sentient beings
share; an individual's gros bon ange is his
or her particle of that vast pool of vital cos-
mic energy. The ti bon ange is the aura of
the individual, that spirit that creates per-
sonality, character and willpower. As the
gros bon ange provides each person with
the power to act, it is the ti bon ange that
molds the individual sentiments within
each act. The z'etoile is the one spiritual
component that resides not in the body, but
in the sky. It is the individual's star of destiny,
and is viewed as a calabash that carries
one's hope and all the many ordered events
that shall occur over the course of a single
For the voudou believer, life and death
stretch far beyond the temporal limits of the
corps cadavre, the mere material ex-
pression of the individual. Life begins not at
the physical conception of the body but at
an earlier moment, when God first decides
that the person should exist. Complete
death is defined not as the clinical demise
of the body, but as the time when each of the
five aspects of man finds its ultimate goal.
The name, or the spirit of the flesh, is a
gift from God which upon the death of the
corps cadavre passes slowly into the orga-
nisms of the soil. The gradual decomposi-
tion of the corpse is a result of this slow
transferal of energy, a process said to take
18 months to complete. The gros bon
ange enters the individual at conception
and functions only to keep the body alive. At
clinical death, it returns immediately to God
and once again becomes part of the great
reservoir of energy that supports all life.
If the gros bon ange is undifferentiated
energy, the ti bon ange is the spirit directly
associated with the individual. At death the
ti bon ange hovers about the body for
seven days, before descending to the world
of Les Invisibles beneath the dark waters.
One day and one year after the death of the
individual, however, in one of the most im-
portant of voudou rites, the ti bon ange is
ritualistically reclaimed and placed in a jar,
the canari. The Canari Les Morts are fed
and clothed and then during the Ibo cere-
mony are sent to the forest to dwell in trees
Continued on page 47


Notes on the Reconquest

The Latin Americanization of the United States?

By Alejandro Portes

Major and minor immigrations to the
United States have been routinely
subjected to a degree of hostility by
the native majority. Though never light or
easy to bear, the victimization of immigrant
groups has varied in degrees from quiet
prejudice to mob lynching and official ex-
clusion from the country. Examples
abound: the anti-German riots in the Middle
West more than a century ago, the Ameri-
can Protective Association created to fight
the Irish, the Chinese Exclusion Act, the
national quota laws to keep out Italians,
Poles and Jews.
After a generation or two, most immi-
grant groups have managed to adapt in one
way or another to American society. Some
in the second or third generations even join
the perennial nativist chorus against the
latest immigrant minority. Ironically, some
of the groups which were supposed to rep-
resent the greatest threat to the fiber of the
nation, have been held up, two or three
decades later, as exemplary citizens and
contributors to our wealth and culture. This
is the case of the Chinese, barred from entry
before the end of the nineteenth century,
and of the Japanese, excluded from the
land in the 1910s and from property al-
together at the start of World War II. It is also
the case of the Jews, whose children were
kept out of Eastern universities by an arbi-
trary quota system. Every major rise in im-
migration has been followed by the rise of
nativist alarm and movements designed to
keep out the new foreigners. The period
after World War II and especially after the
1965 Immigration Act is no exception. The
exclusionary sentiment has been retailored,
however, to fit the characteristics of the new
immigrants. Two of these are most signifi-
cant: 1) major source countries of immigra-
tion are now located in the Third World,
primarily Asia and Latin America; 2) a sub-
stantial portion of the new immigration
enters the country illegally, a practice un-
common in earlier periods of high im-

Alejandro Portes teaches sociology at Johns
Hopkins University. His book, Labor, Class,
and the International System, was published in
1981 by Academic Press.

The substantial rise in the Latin American
population of the United States during the
last two decades does not have its origins in
a continent-wide outflow. The overwhelm-
ing majority of recent Latin American immi-
grants come instead from countries in the
Caribbean basin, including Mexico and Co-
lombia. Despite this geographic homoge-
neity, the factors underlying the inflow are
quite diverse. Their coincidence in time is,
to a certain extent, fortuitous. The Cuban
revolution, which sent the entire prerevolu-
tionary middle class into exile, coincided
with the acceleration of Mexican labor emi-
gration. The Nicaraguan revolution and the
civil war in El Salvador, which are generat-
ing a new wave of political exiles, run paral-
lel with the acceleration of undocumented
labor immigration from the Dominican Re-
public and Colombia.
It is plausible to argue that these diverse
forces of out-migration have common
roots in the particular style of hegemony
exercised by the United States over the re-
gion. The diffusion of consumption expec-
tations bearing no relation to the economic
possibilities of the majority generated both
discontent and migratory pressures. US-
supported regimes frequently employed
their resources to entrench privilege and
further oppress their populations. When in
trouble, they looked North for salvation.
When finally defeated, the formerly domi-
nant classes moved en masse to the coun-
try on which they had depended. Even in
less oppressive situations, the predominant
model of development continuously in-
creased economic inequality, driving popu-
lar masses out of the land and then out of
the country altogether. From this perspec-
tive, recent Caribbean immigration to the
United States may be seen as part of a his-
torical dialectic whereby a particular form of
global hegemony turns on itself, with unex-
pected and often disruptive results.
This interpretation is, however, partial.
Before it is recast into the themes of the
"alien invasion" or the "latinization of the
United States," a look at the figures is in
order. From 1890 to 1920, the peak period
of pre-World War II immigration, 18.2 mil-
lion immigrants were admitted to the
United States. This figure included 3.8 mil-

lion Italians, 3 million Russian Jews, and 3.1
million Poles and others from the eastern
reaches of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
Total immigration during those 30 years
represented 17.1 percent of the US popula-
tion in 1920. Italians alone accounted for
3.6 percent. Not all immigrants stayed,
however, so that by 1920, first-generation
foreigners represented 13.2 percent of the
population. Economically active immi-
grants arriving in 1900 added 1 percent
more workers to the American labor force.
Five years later, they added 3 percent and, in
1908, 4 percent. In 1910, immigrants repre-
sented 21 percent of the entire civilian labor
These figures can be compared with
those from a similar 30-year period,
1948-1978. During this time, 9.5 million
immigrants were admitted to the United
States. Mexicans were the single largest na-
tional contingent with 1.4 million registered
entries. The West Indies, including Cuba,
the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, and the
rest of the Antilles sent another 1.2 million
permanent immigrants. If all legal immi-
grants who came to the country remained
in it, they would represent 4.6 percent of the
total population in 1978 or one-fourth of
the corresponding figure in 1920. Mexican
immigrants alone would represent less than
1 percent. In 1970, the foreign-born were in
fact 4.7 of the total population or about one-
third of what they were fifty years before.
Economically active immigrants arriving in
a given year never added more than three-
tenths of one percent to the country's labor
force. The figure is about one-tenth of the
contribution made by immigrant workers in
the 1890-1920 period.
These numbers can be immediately
challenged by pointing out that the bulk of
immigration to the United States at present
is not legal, but undocumented, and that
most illegal immigrants come from Mexico
and other Caribbean countries. The point
would take us into a discussion about the
size of the illegal inflow, a tired exercise by
now. Estimates have ranged from the mil-
lions, figures frequently quoted by re-
strictionists, to the few hundred thousands,
a figure reported by a large study recently
completed by the Mexican government.


The Rio Grande between Juarez, Mexico and El Paso, Texas.

Everyone agrees that apprehension figures
reported by the Immigration and Natural-
ization Service are at best a very imperfect
estimate of the magnitude of illegal
There is an emerging consensus, based
on recent empirical studies of undocu-
mented Mexican, Colombian and Domin-
ican immigrants, that a substantial propor-
tion return to their home countries after a
relatively short period in the United States.
This is especially true among Mexicans.
The pattern of return migration and even of
cyclical migration across the border makes
it very difficult to estimate what is the actual
size of the permanent undocumented pop-
ulation of the United States and what is its
impact on American society and economy.
One thing is certain, however, and this is
that not even the wildest estimates place the
number of immigrants now in the United
States at a level comparable to the
1890-1920 period.
The number of illegal immigrants during
the last 30 years would have had to be 27.3
million in order for total immigration to
reach the 1920 level relative to the native
population. The number of undocumented
immigrants now in the United States would

have to be approximately 17.4 million in
order for the foreign-born population to
represent the same proportion of the total
that it did in 1920. To my knowledge, not
even the most exaggerated accounts have
come close to these numbers.
The point is that the current wave of im-
migration to the United States must be
placed in historical context. The present pe-
riod is definitely one of high immigration.
However, the overall significance of immi-
gration, both in demographic and eco-
nomic terms, is but a fraction of what it was
at the beginning of the century. If we are
witnessing the "Mexicanization" or the
"Latin Americanization" of the United
States, it is only in the same sense, and to a
much lesser extent, than it was "Italianized"
and "South Europeanized" a few decades
earlier. Rhetorical statements of this kind
draw attention to the fact that immigrant
flows have a significant economic and cul-
tural impact in the areas where they settle.
They conceal, however, the equally impor-
tant fact that each foreign minority, no mat-
ter how large, has been absorbed into the
United States without altering the funda-
mental economic and political structures of
the country. This absorption, or what 1

would prefer to call incorporation of immi-
grants, has not occurred, however, in a uni-
form manner.

Modes of Incorporation
The sociological analysis of immigration
has traditionally focused on the coping
mechanisms utilized by immigrants and
their processes of assimilation to a new set-
ting. Concepts such as accommodation,
acculturation, and adaptation-prominent
in the sociological literature-were coined
in the context of immigrant studies and in-
terethnic relations.
The assimilation perspective portrays a
basically homogenous sequence of adap-
tation which would roughly move along the
following steps: Newly-arrived immigrant
groups concentrate in their own ethnic
ghettos. Lack of skills and lack of familiarity
with the language and culture forces them
into the worst jobs. The areas of the city
which they occupy are crowded and im-
poverished. Their "foreignness" and pov-
erty repel the native population. Immigrants
suffer from much prejudice and discrimina-
tion. The first generation gradually accultu-
rates and experiences some economic
progress. The second generation becomes


5~-~bI~3~-~'A;-7_ 7~ 9

increasingly identified with the new country,
breaking with their parents' loyalty to the old
one. Immigrant children become rapidly
acculturated through the school system.
Their higher educational achievement and
knowledge of the country lead to better
economic opportunities. Acculturation and
economic progress reduce, in turn, social
distance from the majority, though the chil-
dren of immigrants remain, by and large, a
stigmatized group. By the third or fourth
generations, economic progress and ac-
culturation break the final social barriers.
The group "melts" either into the society at
large or into one of its major subgroups
defined by religion: Catholic, Protestant and
Jew. The process of assimilation is now
The application of this basic assimilation
sequence to recent immigrants to the
United States and, in particular, to recent
Latin American immigration runs into se-
vere difficulties. There are two basic short-
comings in this perspective: First, it
assumes that the socioeconomic context
into which immigrants are incorporated is
homogenous. Second, it assumes that the
rapidity of assimilation depends primarily
on individual characteristics such as educa-
tion, knowledge of English, and the "right"
values. More educated, knowledgeable, and
modern immigrants will presumably be
those more rapidly absorbed into the
It is possible to show that recent immi-
grant groups have gone through at least
three distinct "modes" of incorporation to
American society and that each deviates in
significant ways from the assimilation

model. These modes can be labelled "pri-
mary," "secondary" and "enclave."

Primary Sector Immigration
A numerically significant part of current im-
migration to the United States is directed to
what has been labelled the primary labor
market. It corresponds roughly to employ-
ment in government, large-scale institu-
tions-such as hospitals, universities, and
research centers-and large corporations.
Firms in this sector tend to comply with
minimum wage, work environment, and
other labor laws. Discipline is not enforced
arbitrarily by a foreman or boss, but de-
pends on a series of explicitly laid-out and
bureaucratically enforced norms. Workers
generally have opportunities for advance-
ment on the basis of seniority and skills
along a preestablished ladder.
The "goodjobs" in the primary sector are
usually taken by native white workers, but
sometimes shortages develop in the na-
tional, regional, or local markets. Profes-
sions in which national manpower short-
ages have been met by immigration in
recent years include physicians, nurses, di-
etitians, engineers, and scientists. Immigra-
tion directed to the primary sector has the
following characteristics: It comes legally
and is protected by labor laws just as native
workers are. Immigrants are hired accord-
ing to individual skills and not according to
their ethnicity. They have advancement op-
portunities comparable to native workers,
though they often start at the bottom of their
respective ladders. Immigrants from a par-
ticular country do not concentrate in a
given city or neighborhood. They are found

dispersed throughout the country accord-
ing to the location of firms which employ
them. Substantial economic progress and
extensive participation in American social
networks often occur in the first generation,
even in the absence of full acculturation or
perfect knowledge of English.
Primary sector immigration corresponds
to what is often called, from the standpoint
of sending countries, the brain drain. The
flow of professional, managerial, technical,
and skilled craft personnel from periphery
to center tends to fit the juridical categories
of immigration law and is thus easily re-
corded and reported by government agen-
cies. The flow is encouraged by explicit
legal provisions. Thus, for example, the
third and sixth preference categories of the
amended 1965 US Immigration Act are re-
served for professional, technical, and
skilled workers in short supply in the
In 1978, 69,806 foreign professionals,
managers and technicians were legally ad-
mitted to the United States as permanent
residents. Latin America contributed 8,052
or 12 percent of the total. An additional
27,788 skilled artisans and craftsmen were
admitted in the same year. The Latin Ameri-
can share was 47 percent of the total.
The contributions that thousands of for-
eign professionals and artisans make to
American society does not figure promi-
nently in recent policy discussions about
immigration nor in scholarly analysis of the
subject. A reason for this is the "invisibility"
typical of this mode of incorporation. Coun-
tries which have made the most substantial
contribution of professionals to the United


States in recent years (and which have thus
suffered from the greatest brain drain) are
Taiwan, India, and the Philippines. No one
speaks of a "Chinese," "Indian" or "Filipino"
immigration problem. They are seldom
mentioned in policy debates. The reason is
that these Asian professionals are dispersed
throughout the country, employed by a
number of firms and institutions, and pur-
suing a style of adaptation quite different
from the conventional assimilation
Foreign physicians are among the most
numerous professional workers in the
United States. A recent large study of for-
eign doctors in US hospitals found no evi-
dence of discrimination against them in
pay or working conditions relative to US
medical graduates in similar positions. The
study found, however, that foreign doctors
were disproportionately concentrated in the
less prestigious hospitals, predominantly
those without university affiliation. These re-
sults fit well the labor-supplement function,
where immigrants are hired to resolve a
manpower shortage by taking the less de-
sirable positions in a particular profession
or craft.

Secondary Sector Immigration
The secondary labor market corresponds
to employment in small and medium-sized
competitive firms which lack internal pro-
motion ladders and for which cheap labor is
a decisive element of survival. Discipline in
these firms is imposed directly and it is
often harsh. The pressures of competition
lead to an unmitigated downward pressure
on wages and a continuous search for
cheaper and more docile sources of labor.
Native workers frequently refuse to take
these jobs; when they do, they change from
one to another since the absence of promo-
tion ladders offers no incentive to stay with a
particular employer.
The "bad jobs" of the secondary sector
are those in which American-born minor-
ities, such as blacks and Chicanos, tend to
concentrate. A large proportion of contem-
porary immigration is also directed to this
sector. In contrast with primary immigra-
tion, that going into the secondary labor
market has the following characteristics: Its
juridical status is often tenuous, ranging
from illegal to temporary. Workers are not
primarily hired according to their skills, but
according to their ethnicity. Their primary
advantage to employers is the vulnerability
attached to their juridical position. Immi-
grants tend to be hired for transient and
short-term jobs which are not part of a pro-
motion ladder. Opportunities for upward
mobility are severely restricted. The func-
tion of secondary sector immigration is not
limited to supplementing the domestic la-
bor force but involves disciplining it. Immi-
grant workers are hired even when a
domestic labor supply exists and against

Immigration inspector escorting undocumented aliens in Phoenix, 1981.
Immigration inspector escorting undocumented aliens in Phoenix, 1981.

the employment conditions demanded by
the latter. The consistent effect of second-
ary labor immigration is thus to lower the
prevailing wage. Secondary sector immi-
gration tends to cluster in limited residential
areas, ghettos or barrios, characterized by
poor housing and overcrowding.
Secondary sector immigration differs
from the normative assimilation sequence
because of the illegal status of most immi-
grants in it. This has two consequences:
First, as noted above, many return to their
native country. Second, those who stay find
their opportunities for acculturation and up-
ward economic mobility restricted by their
illegal status. Their children face much
greater difficulties in moving along the pat-
terned steps of the assimilation ladder and
thus tend to remain confined to the same
jobs and residential areas as their parents.
Current Mexican immigration offers one
of the most typical examples of secondary
labor flows. The bulk of this immigration is
undocumented although a substantial pro-
portion has also managed to legalize its
situation. The majority of Mexican immi-
grants are small farmers, urban unskilled
and semi-skilled workers, plus some ar-
tisans and white-collar employees.
In a longitudinal study of Mexican immi-
gration, I interviewed 822 legal male immi-
grants along the Texas border during
1972-73. Interviews took place at the point
of legal entry in the United States. The same
immigrants were reinterviewed three and
six years later. A total of 439 cases were
found and reinterviewed in 1976 and 455 in
1979. A series of statistical checks on the
original sample indicated that it was repre-
sentative of the population of male Mexican

immigrants arriving during fiscal 1973.
Analyses of the two follow-up subsamples
indicated that they were unbiased with re-
spect to the original one.
Approximately 70 percent of the original
sample was estimated to have resided for
extensive periods in the United States prior
to legal entry. These immigrants were able
to obtain residents' visas largely through
marriage to a US citizen or permanent resi-
dent. The remainder of the sample also
came, almost exclusively, as immediate rel-
atives of US citizens and permanent resi-
dents. Results from this sample illustrate
some of the characteristics of secondary
sector immigration.
At the moment of arrival in the US most
immigrants already had a job. These jobs
paid a median of $408 per month or less
than half the median earnings of the US
adult male labor force in 1973. In subse-
quent years, there was a gradual narrowing
of the gap, though in 1979 it was still signfi-
cant. Mexican immigrant monthly earnings
then stood at $818 while the corresponding
national figure was $1,205. Adjusting for
inflation, the economic gain made by this
sample was still less impressive: Between
1973 and 1979, the real increase in earn-
ings was only $100, or less than one-fourth
the original monthly earnings.
More important, however, is the correla-
tion of earnings with variables which
should, in theory, increase them. These var-
iables include education at arrival, knowl-
edge of English, and past occupational
training. The secondary labor market is
characterized by employment in dead-end
jobs for which many school-acquired skills
Continued on page 49


4 -y

PBliPid 6 i~~gsB ib~~


Lola Rodn'guez de Tio, Julia de Burgos and Ana Roque de Duprey.



Between Two Worlds

Educated Puerto Rican Migrant Women

By Virginia E. Sanchez Korrol

Puerto Rican migrant women of the
twenties and thirties contributed to
the formation of an identifiable com-
munity in New York through a variety of
endeavors. Working and middle-class
women accepted the challenge of recreat-
ing island customs, traditions and a unique
lifestyle in the infant enclaves. Community
activists, skilled or unskilled workers, they
were first and foremost wives and mothers.
Indeed, census information for the period
confirms that the average migrant woman
was in her most productive years (within the
15 to 24-year-old age bracket), had been
resident in New York an average of four
years, and frequently listed her occupation
as housewife.
These protagonists emerge as active, en-
ergetic individuals, determined to keep tra-
ditional family life intact while shouldering
their share of financial burdens or commu-
nity obligations. Faced with the economic
realities of the poor working-class colo-
nias, they found ways to combine conven-
tional home life with gainful employment.
Many worked outside of the home in facto-
ries, as seamstresses, domestics, laun-
dresses, and as unskilled workers.
While the majority of the female migrant
community fit into those employment clas-
sifications, a handful-usually skilled, bi-
lingual or educated women-wrested a
foothold in other occupations. Others be-
came known for their dedication to volun-
teer or creative work necessary for shaping
their community. The contributions of
these few has often been overlooked. Yet as
professionals or as white-collar workers, as
colonia activists, as feminists or as artists,
this handful appeared before the public eye,
serving as spokespersons, as role models
or as objects of emulation for the broader
working-class base. These were the women
who held jobs which required some degree
of academic preparation; who made possi-
ble the functioning of community organiza-
tions which in turn helped structure the

Virginia E. Sanchez Korrol, author of From
Colonia to Community (Greenwood Press,
1983), teaches Puerto Rican studies at
Brooklyn College.

early settlements; who wrote for the maga-
zines read in the colonial.
Beginning with the American occupa-
tion, the Puerto Rican educational system
was bent on preparation of a service and
clerical sector. Policies rested on a twofold
mission: to expand elementary education
among the Puerto Rican masses, arming
them with a clear understanding of the new
social-political and economic order, and to
prepare an intermediary sector for the prac-
tical implementation and maintenance of
American enterprises. The teaching profes-
sion, as a case in point, incorporated thou-
sands of women during the first three
decades of the century. In 1899 there were
563 female teachers in Puerto Rico; by
1930 their numbers had swelled to 4,254.
Less dramatic increases occurred among
female clerical workers and in the nursing
profession. The island's population census
recorded 189 female nurses and a similar
number of office workers in 1910, but by
1930 these figures had increased to 921
nurses and 2,500 clerical workers. By the
twenties and thirties, an intermediary class
of skilled and professional women workers,
essential for the functioning of the domi-
nant American order, was well established
in Puerto Rico.
Intent on achieving equal educational
opportunity as one of their professional
goals, women teachers actively participated
in the island's suffrage movement resulting
in unconditional franchise by 1932. Within
feminist struggles the laudatory experi-
ences and contributions of an Ana Roque
de Duprey or a Luisa Capetillo were not
isolated examples. They were representa-
tive of small but effective pressure groups
bound together by common goals and
A teacher by profession, a journalist and
scientist by avocation, Dofia Ana
(1853-1933) headed the feminist move-
ment along with other ardent supporters of
similar orientation. She founded the Liga
Feminea Puertorriqueiia in 1917, super-
seded by the Asociaci6n de Sufragistas
Puertorriquehas, and the Asociaci6n In-
sular de Mijeres Votantes in 1932. As
early as 1893, she had launched La Mijer,

the first newspaper oriented toward
women's issues in Puerto Rico. The journal
La Evoluci6n appeared in 1902, followed
by La Miuer del Siglo (1917) and Heraldo
de la Mujer (1920). Similarly, Luisa Ca-
petillo (1880-1922) distinguished herself in
the island's trade union and socialist move-
ments as a writer and editor of women's
journals and as a precocious proponent of
women's rights.
Throughout the critical pre-World War II
decades thousands of Puerto Rican
women, representing both working-class
and organizationally minded women, lived
and worked in the Puerto Rican colonia of
New York. Earning recognition for their en-
deavors on both sides of the ocean, they
initiated enterprises or engaged in activities
based on island experiences. Capetillo, for
example, visited the colonia hispana and
was employed as a reader in the city's cigar
factories. She undertook organizational
work and became involved in the colonia's
quest for social reform in politics and in the
factories. Lola Rodriguez de Tio
(1843-1924), noted poet, writer and revolu-
tionary, played a vital role in the island's
independence movements and also partici-
pated in the organizational life of the early
settlements. Frequently appearing as a
guest of honor, Rodriguez de Tio encour-
aged, supported and participated in colo-
nia activity linking its ultimate political or
cultural agendas with island interests. Julia
de Burges (1914-1953), outstanding femi-
nist poet, teacher and political activist, con-
tinued her activities as a New York resident,
working among her compatriots in the gar-
ment industry.

The New York Experience
A diverse community welcomed the mi-
grants. By the mid-twenties, the colonia
hispana straddled the East River with bar-
rios in the boroughs of Brooklyn and Man-
hattan. Their emigration facilitated by the
particular political relationship between the
island and the mainland, Puerto Ricans
dominated a Spanish-speaking population
of roughly 100,000. Theirs was a tightly knit,
introspective community where local,
small-business people enjoyed a degree of


leadership among less privileged neigh-
bors; where community organizations
boasted substantial audiences of 100 or
200 persons at functions; and where Span-
ish-language newspapers and magazines
found an eager reading public. La Prensa,
for example, had been founded by 1913,
and magazines such as Grifico, El Her-
aldo and Reolsta de Artes y Letras en-
joyed long literary lives.
Sister Carmelita Bonilla, was the first Trin-
itarian nun from Puerto Rico. She arrived in
the city as a teenager en route to Georgia
where she took her vows. When assigned to
a Brooklyn convent, her new respon-
sibilities required involvement in social wel-
fare, housing, educational and vocational
counseling, public health and religious ed-
ucation. Her recollections evoke memories
of a poor community, overwhelmingly
working class, where she was frequently
called upon as a translator or intermediary
between the Spanish-speaking settlement
and the wider, non-Hispanic society. Young-
sters credited Sister Carmelita with encour-
aging their own academic growth. As one of
the founders of the settlement house, Cas-
ita Maria, she continued to influence the
social, cultural and educational welfare of
the early colonia.
Doctora Eloisa Garcia Rivera, on the
other hand, made her mark in politics and
higher education. A university graduate
upon her arrival in the city, Dofia Eloisa
completed graduate work in Spanish litera-
ture. Firmly adhering to the traditional phi-
losophy that women should be helpmates
to their spouses, she campaigned and di-
rected voter registration drives on behalf of
her husband's political career.
Yet a different perspective appears in the
case of Honorina Irizarry, who came to live
in her brother's comfortable Brooklyn
home during the twenties. Dofia Honorina
had studied and perfected her clerical skills.
Once in the Brooklynbarrio, determined to
work and use her mind and skills, she
sought employment in spite of the objec-
tions of her family, who considered working
"unladylike." Answering a newspaper ad,
she obtained a position as a bilingual
Dofia Honorina was an exceptional
woman for her time. She studied at Eras-
mus Hall High School at night while work-
ing days, mastered five languages fluently
and eventually eamed a liberal arts degree.
Clearly, Dofia Honorina's experiences in
Puerto Rico molded her activities in New
York. Her superior secretarial skills and aca-
demic ambitions made possible a life of
comfort, satisfaction and status. In time,
Dofa Honorina participated in the political
organizations of the Brooklyn settlement,
where her position within the community
afforded her a degree of leadership.

Individual Stories
A closer look into several case histories fur-

their illustrates the connection between the
early experiences of migrant women in
Puerto Rico, their subsequent contributions
to the New Yorkcolonia and, in most cases,
their conscious efforts to forge and main-
tain links between the two. One individual
who performed brilliantly in all areas was
Dofia Josefina Silva de Cintr6n. She began
her career as an elementary school teacher
in Caguas. Distinguished before long as a
community leader in Rio Piedras, Dofia
Josefina established the first post office in
Hato Rey, worked with the Red Cross and
with the Corte de Lourdes. As a journalist,

1,000 Puerto Rican postal
workers were hired as

she collaborated with feminist Mercedes
Sola in the publication of La Muier en el
Siglo. Dofia Josefina contributed to the lit-
erary arena, writing under the pen name of
Dofia Josefina pursued similar activities
in New York: the Uni6n de Muieres Ameri-
canas and the League of Spanish-speak-
ing Democrats, among others. Her
foremost contribution was the creation of a
monthly journal, Artes y Letras. Flourish-
ing in New York from 1933 until 1945, the
journal conscientiously promoted the pres-
ervation of the Spanish language, culture
and literary traditions. It created mutual
awareness regarding social-cultural events
among Puerto Ricans and other Spanish-
speaking groups. The journal presented a
clearly defined middle-class point of view.
The joumal featured articles on family
and child welfare; editorials defended rele-
vant community issues. Its literary pages
presented the works of creative giants such
as Julio de Burgos or lesser known poets
such as Carmen Alicia Cadilla. Essays and
short stories shared space with news of
community organizations, activities and
events. And the society pages divulged the
private lives of community leaders, report-
ing their comings and goings in exagger-
ated fashion. In short, Artes y Letras
reported the social and cultural interaction
of the colonia, while conveying a specific
portrayal of a select segment of the city's
Spanish-speaking population.
IfArtes y Letras reported the activities of
a select group, it also sought to attract a
specific reading public-namely, women.
Adhering to an almost "feminist" frame of
reference and philosophy, the unique struc-
ture of the joumal's editorial board insured
female input. The board consisted of eleven
members, six of whom were women, each
representing a different Latin country.
Moreover, these were well-educated, ac-

complished women who continued to
maintain relationships with others of similar
backgrounds in their countries. Dofia
Josefina, for example, had contact with
those of the intermediary sector in Puerto
Rico-the group that occupied white-collar,
professional or decision-making positions
within the American colonial structure and
generally favored a North American point
of view.
Dofia Josefina used Artes y Letras to
convey an organizational network and so-
cial elite to the Hispanic community of New
York. In the society column, privileged fami-
lies frequently traveled between Puerto Rico
and New York, to Spain and to South Amer-
ica, students graduated with honors from
good universities, exuberant newlyweds
read of their elaborate wedding celebra-
tions. Condolences were extended and
congratulations expressed for personal
achievements. The activities of community
groups testified to involvement of women.
If Dofia Josefina addressed the interests
of an educated middle class, others aspired
to bring the fruits of an intellectual heritage
directly to the working class. One who did
was writer and folklorist, Dofia Pura Belpre.
Active in community organizations during
the 1930s and early 1940s, Pura Belpr6 was
the first Puerto Rican librarian in New York
City's public library system. Born in Cidra in
1902, her earliest memories of life in Puerto
Rico depict frequent family moves and in-
ternal migrations throughout the island.
She arrived in New York City as a child, and
the bulk of her education took place there.
By 1921, Belpre had begun library work at
the 135th Street branch. She soon became
chief children's librarian at the 115th Street
branch in Southwest Harlem, a predomi-
nantly Puerto Rican neighborhood shared
by other Hispanic groups.
Pura Belpre observed two trends among
the early migrant women: an emphasis on
traditional family values and an interest in
Puerto Rican culture and heritage. Accord-
ing to Belpre, women often struggled to
keep family life intact. During critical eco-
nomic periods, women sold their needle-
work and handicrafts from door to door to
supplement their meager family incomes.
Grandmothers, charged with caring for the
young, visited the library searching for
books in Spanish to teach their grand-
children their native language.
Belpre would tell stories on Puerto Rican
themes, values and folktales, and soon
graduated to translating the latter into Eng-
lish, writing her own children's stories and
creating programs designed to meet spe-
cific colonia cultural needs. This included
inviting notable Hispanic visitors to the city,
with visits to the library as well. Thus, a
renowned poetess like Gabriela Mistral or
the Puerto Rican tenor, Antonio Paoli would
include a special library presentation as part
of their itinerary. Under Belpre's direction,
the library would sponsor cultural events


focusing on Latin themes, confident of the
participation of experts in the field such as
Dr. Federico de Onis, Director of the In-
stituto de Las Espafias, community leaders
like Claudia Aran, or the well-known dance
team of P&rez y Martinez or Lola Bravo. By
1937, the Aguilar branch was also present-
ing special programs commemorating im-
portant cultural and religious feast days like
Three Kings Day, Columbus Day or St.
John's Festival. Belpre's professional ac-
tivities culminated in the South Bronx Pro-
ject-the creation of a bilingual program
within the library system by the mid-thirties.
While Belpre's professional life was un-
doubtedly demanding, her activities were
not solely confined to the library. Like her
compaiieras in the city, Dofia Pura ex-
tended her services throughout the com-
munity. Belpre created cultural children's
programs for the Educational Alliance, the
Union Settlement House, Madison House
and Casita Maria, where her earliest au-
diences consisted of Irish students prepar-
ing to work with Puerto Rican youth. Similar
programs were initiated at the YWCA,
where she began an informal equivalent of
the more recent headstart programs. Fi-
nally, Belpre maintained active participation
in several community groups, among them
Puerto Rico Literario, Asociaci6n de Es-
critores y Periodistas Puertorriquenos,
and supported the work of others such as
the Liga Puertorriqueia and the Alianza
Raquel Rivera Hernandez illustrated yet
another perspective of community involve-
ment. Dofia Raquel came to New York in
1938 en route to college in Pennsylvania.
After graduation, she settled in New York
where her first job consisted of intercepting
letters, newspapers and magazines des-
tined for Spain, Latin America or the Span-
ish Caribbean. It was 1942, and the onset of
the Second World War motivated the hiring
of over 1,000 Puerto Rican postal workers
to fill essential positions as censors. Many of
these individuals, including Dofia Raquel,
held university or advanced degrees. Oth-
ers were college professors, writers or
Dofia Raquel often marveled at the many
talented, well-educated Puerto Ricans who
through unforseen circumstances found
themselves working together in the wartime
post office. Had the Puerto Rican commu-
nity harnessed the leadership potential and
abilities displayed within this setting, it
would have made a tremendous impact at a
critical point in the development of the early
settlements, according to Dofia Raquel.
She firmly believed her work and that of the
others in the censorship division was im-
portant to the war effort.

Community Leadership
There was thus a small group of Puerto
Rican migrant women who early in the set-
tlement process assumed the reins of com-

munity leadership, responsibility-laden
paid or volunteer jobs, professional or cleri-
cal work following in the wake of aborted
island careers. Through group work and
involvement, they were frequently in the
public eye, their actions reported in publica-
tions intended to saturate the pioneer settle-
ments. As fund raisers, sponsors of cultural
affairs, sentinels of culture and tradition,
they occupied a somewhat exalted niche in
community hierarchical relations-las
damas, seioras y seioritas of a bygone
island era. As writers and journalists, they
reenacted a multi-faceted role: they created

and articulated the community's innermost
concerns, maintained active bonds with
their peers and class across the ocean, and
shaped feminine modes of behavior.
While their numbers remain low in com-
parison to the overall population, they were
trailblazers nevertheless. Certainly in tradi-
tional Latin class-conscious style, the ac-
tions of the more privileged would set the
tone for others to follow. The contributions
and influence exerted by these organization
women, writers, artists, white-collar workers
and professionals must not be
underestimated. O

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Telephone (305) 554-2441


A Decent Woman

Abstracts From a New Novel

By Miguel Correa
Translated by Judith C. Faerron

In Spring 1980, after Fidel Castro got
himself caught up in the Peruvian
Embassy mess-eleven thousand
Cubans crowded into the embassy in
search of political asylum-he needed to
show the world that these people were
misfits, the dregs of Cuban society. To do
this he made it short-term policy to put
on boats to Key West not only those
from the embassy but others he
considered of the same ilk: the mentally
ill, prostitutes, homosexuals, criminals,
religious fanatics. Thousands then left
the island via the ragtag flotilla that
came to be known simply as "Mariel."
One of the unintended consequences
of Castro's action was to establish
models of behavior to be copied by
anyone wanting to leave Cuba. The
irony of the process is wonderfully
captured in ajoke that circulated
throughout the Mariel exodus: A young
boy goes into a police station and
claims, "I am a homosexual, my
brothers are homosexuals, and my
father is a homosexual."
"But how can that be," replies the
official, "isn't there anyone in your
family who likes women?"
"Oh, yes, my mother does-you'd
better deport us all!"
To get permission to leave Cuba one
had to sign a sworn statement that one
was a deviant. Reportedly, officials were
promised pieces of furniture left behind
should the person ship out, or were paid
to write on the required forms something
indicating deviance Official identities
were exchanged between known
criminals who intended to remain and
noncriminals who wanted out. Within
this climate there arose a strange
reversal of values whereby deviance
earned official reward.
The following excerpt from Miguel
Correa's new novel, Al Norte del
Infierno, dramatizes such an event. That
book won the Jes(s Castellanos Prize
for the Novel during the 1983 Miami
Festival ofArts commemorating the
third anniversary of Mariel.-BBL

Yes, yes, Lieutenant, write it down just
like I'm telling you. In my family we are
all homosexuals. Boy, are we homo-
sexuals! 1, myself, am a hard-core dyke.
Being a dyke, however, is the least of my
problems. I've been a prostitute for two dec-
ades now. I'm a madam. The biggest
madam in town. Oh yes! Me, the madam.
I've been in jail several times, always for the
same crime: I masturbate at night in the
Plaza de la Catedral in front of a portrait of
Vilma Espin. And they throw me in jail every
time. And then they let me out and even I
myself believe I'm not going to do it again.
But two weeks later I go straight to that plaza
and I masturbate again, looking at the por-
trait of that lady. And when I don't have the
portrait, I masturbate on the statues on the
avenue. I don't even realize it. Sometimes
I'm walking down the street eating an ice
cream with one hand and masturbating
with the other.
My husband is a pitiful case. We're mar-
ried to cover our true identities, but deep
down we are just that: trash. Homosexual
trash. The best thing you can do is get rid of
us. If I were the president of this country, I
would have already sent all of them north to
contaminate that decadent society even
more. I swear it. What's more, I think that as
long as you keep us here, and people like
us, you'll never be able to pull this country
out of underdevelopment. Yes, because we
are underdevelopment. We steal from the
rest the little thatyou give them, the little that
the rest are able to steal for themselves. You
try to develop this place with us here, not
realizing, Lieutenant, that each day it be-
comes more undevelopable; each day,
there are more shortages, and each day,
backwardness spreads like weeds. Because
you go out to harvest potatoes and we throw
them away. You clean the streets and then I
come by and masturbate all over them.
How naive, Lieutenant! Get us out of here
and you'll see.
My youngest boy is a lost cause. And you
work with him, teach him things-or try to
teach him-and he does more and more
damage. That boy of mine, every day-
before he masturbates-he goes and pulls

up the corn that his own father planted. And
he pulls it up just to do harm, so that noth-
ing will grow. Did you write it all down Lieu-
tenant? Don't leave anything out, for God's
We don't deserve such kindness. When
you give me that letter with your signature
and the official seals, I'm not going to blush.
Because it's all true. I should be ashamed,
scoundrel that I am, evil tart, Chinese call
girl, insatiable lesbian, old jailbird. I should
be ashamed to sit here and say all of this to
your face. Do you have it all now, Lieuten-
ant? Don't forget anything!
Well, that's the way we all are. My daugh-
ter, she goes with foreigners. She gives her-
self in exchange for Western clothing. She
leaves the house on Mondays and doesn't
come back until the following Monday. A
society like this should be ashamed to have
creatures like that. I'm going to tell you
again, Lieutenant, all that we are, in case
you left anything out. I don't know if you
want me to be more explicit. I'm speaking in
general terms because if I go into detail
about all that I am or have been, it could take
more than a week. Write down my member-
ship in the Nazi Party in 1945. 1 was also a
lieutenant, Lieutenant. What a good lieuten-
ant I was! Write down too that 1 picked
pockets on the bus, that I was a friend of
Clarita, the greatest pickpocket in town. Can
you imagine that we used to go out together
at night to pick pockets and one night I
picked her pocket! Write it all down,
There are four of us. Two children and
two adults. Did you get the ID card num-
bers? And don't think that the kids can't be
too bad; they are the worst. You see this scar
on my hand? Guess how I got it. My daugh-
ter, with a hatchet, last year. Imagine that
when we get there, I'm going to one state
and she's going to Puerto Rico.
Do I have to be more explicit, Lieutenant?
My name is Juana. "Bad Juana," they call
me in the neighborhood. "Bad Ass Juana"
on the street. More, right Lieutenant? Yes,
more. I don't work. I've been charged with
breaking the law of vagrancy, breaking the
law of extravagancy, breaking the law of


dangerousness and breaking some other
laws too.
I'm afraid Lieutenant, that you are going
to confuse all our family crimes. The "pre-
delinquent" isn't me, but my daughter. And
the one who steals bicycles isn't the boy, but
the boy's father. Oh my God, you're going to
mix it all up. The one who helped burn
down the theater wasn't the girl, but me.
The girl didn't hold up the Korean delega-
tion, the boy did. Try not to get confused
Lieutenant. The one who killed the cow
wasn't the father, but the girl. And the sugar-
cane fields weren't set on fire by the father,
as you say, but by me. Can you imagine! As
old as I am, and one day I just got the urge
and I burned it all down. And look, Lieuten-
ant, the one who put poison in those cro-
quettes wasn't the boy, but the boy's father.
Right... the ones that drove the truck into
the embassy were the kids, but not me or
their father. You have to fix this Lieutenant.
And don't let any of our misdeeds get past
The Koreans were held up by... who was
it that held up those Koreans, for God's
sake?... The girl, I think. Yes, it was the girl,
Lieutenant. That girl of mine is a bad one.
Write it all down Lieutenant. I'll go slower
this time. Write it down like this: "truck-girl,"
"Koreans-father," "cow-me." Oh, Lieuten-
ant, now even I am getting confused. "Cro-
quettes-boy," "bicycles-boy's father." Oh,
Lieutenant, I feel bad. Let me rest a minute.
Don't stop writing while I'm resting. It would
have been better if you had caught us all in
the act, then you'd have all the details clear
in the written reports. I poisoned the cro-
quettes. I killed the cow. Oh Lieutenant, I'm
very nervous. I burned the sugarcane fields.
Oh Lieutenant, I'm very sick. Time is run-
ning out. Lieutenant, the one who was a
lieutenant was my daughter. She knows
everything. Help me Lieutenant. Oh, Lieu-
tenant. I know you want to help us. It was
me, Lieutenant. I killed the cow. I think the
cow died by itself, Lieutenant. And we took
advantage of its death to put the blame on
ourselves. I feel better now.
You got it all down, didn't you Lieutenant?
Help us. We're going to invite you to a pig

roast. Yes, you are invited. Tomorrow. I'm
going to leave you everything we own-and
that's a lot! And all the money we have saved
will be yours Lieutenant. You signed the
letter, didn't you? Thank you Lieutenant.
Thank you very much. This country needs
men and lieutenants like you. Thank you
Lieutenant. Whenever I get a chance I'm
going to send you things from out there. I
promise. I'll give you the pig and you can
take it home if you want and eat it there. We
are tired of eating that kind of rfieat. It just
makes us sick!
The letter is signed, isn't it? Oh yes, good.
No, I don't think I'll be needing more letters,
but if anything happens, I'll say you sent us.
Thank you Lieutenant. No, no more letters.

But my next-door neighbor needs one.
There are about ten in his family. And they
have more than a hundred pigs. I'll tell him.
I'll see you later Lieutenant. Come by my
house tomorrow. Come whenever you want
and we'll have gathered all our belongings
foryou. Oh, and this is just between you and
me. No one else will know about it. I am a
decent woman. O

Miguel Correa, a Mariel refugee, today at-
tends New York University. He is currently
working on his second novel, La Arboleda de
Dioniso, and has just completed a book of
poems, La Enormidad del Hacha. Judith C.
Faerron is assistant editor of CR.


A Clash of Cultures

The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez

A Film Review by Tombs Rivera

The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez
Directed by Robert M. Young; Produced
by Michael Hausman and Moctesuma
Esparza; Director of photography: Ray
Villalobos; Music by Michael Lewis and
Edward Olmos; Featuring: Edward
James Olmos, James Gammon, Tom
Bower, Brion James, Rosana DeSoto,
Bruce McGill; Distributed by Embassy
Communications, Los Angeles. 99

Gregorio Cortez, an unknown Mex-
ican ranch hand, and W.T (Brack)
Morris, an unknown sheriff, pistols
in hand, blazed away at each other on a
farm a few miles west of Kennedy, Texas.
June 12, 1901, dates the legend of a tragic

misunderstanding. The sheriff was killed
and Cortez entered into legend. Legends,
however, are not born of simple, tragic mis-
understandings. Legends are an ac-
cumulation of communal and individual
passion, historical precedence and cultural
perspectives, and very basically the basis of
spiritual and actual history-plus legends
are continued invention.
Thus, even today, in the cantinas along
both sides of the Rio Grande, the border
Mexicans sing the praises of the great
"Sheriff Killer" in the ballad which they call
"El Corrido de Gregorio Cortez."
Americo Paredes in 1958 told the story of
Cortez, the man and his legend, in vivid,
fascinating detail in his book, With His
Pistol in His Hand (University of Texas
Press). The book is also a scholarly study, a
unique study of ballads in the making in the
border country-Texas-Mexico. With excel-
lent skill Paredes weaves several elements

into the story-history of the border coun-
try, folkways, border people, interpretations.
The book centers around Gregorio Cortez,
the killing of the sheriff, and the flight from
the law and the manhunt. With His Pistol
in His Hand also signals the modern era of
Mexican-American literature.
Paredes' book, above all, placed Mex-
ican-American historical perspective, imag-
ination, and cultural affinities within the
context of the American continent's experi-
ence: the European traditions clashing in
the new lands; the destruction of cultures;
the nativistic attitudes of the newly arrived
and conqueror-and conquered; new and
old social orders; differences in language
and the translations; family unity; the sense
of moral superiority, etc. With His Pistol in
His Hand clearly is most of all an interpre-
tation of the Mexican-American experi-
ence-it is a humanistic metaphor in every
sense of the word.


Scenes from the film. From the left: Gregorio Cort6z, played by Edward James Olmos;
Valeriano CortBz, played by Mico Olmos; Director Robert Young consulting with Edward
James Olmos. Top left: Carlota Munoz, played by Rosana de Soto. Above: Gregorio Cort6z,
with Victoria Plata as his wife Carmen, and Cleo Ann de Yapp as his daughter.

To take that metaphor from literature and
to translate it into film takes more than great
skill. The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez, star-
ring Edward J. Olmos as Gregorio Cortez,
and directed by Robert M. Young, succeeds
excellently. It is not a cowboys and Indians
type of movie. It is not good guys versus bad
guys (white hats vs. black hats). Nor is it
man versus nature. It is a complex, interpre-
tive effort but it is not new wave psychology;
it is not even man versus man, ultimately. It
is, in the end, a humanization of the dif-
ferences between men and women of dif-
ferent cultural perspectives-an attempt at
understanding and the tragic circum-
stances of misunderstanding and inability
to communicate between cultures.
Language then is the important ele-
ment-the spoken and the unspoken. With
excellent technique there is also the lan-
guage of color and sound, the tactile as well
as the olfactory nuances. The film is an

integrity of the sense as well as the integrity
of the difference in mind sets.
Edward Olmos' performance is superior.
In this truly bilingual movie (characters
speaking their native language naturally)
Gregorio Cortez speaks hardly at all. Yet the
viewer understands the soliloquy. The fact is
he has committed the ultimate act of taking
someone else's life. He is one and apart.
During the manhunt he speaks to his horse
often. When he is helped by an "anglo cow-
boy" each speaks in his own tongue. Yet
they understand their need for each other.
But Olmos excellently portrays the ac-
cumulation of his cultural background by
his actions, by his facial and body language,
and by his circumstance of constantly
being on the verge of not only being caught,
but communicating. The scene in jail, when
an interpreter is brought in to translate for
him, is as classic and subtle a denouement
as has ever been filmed.

The casting, the wardrobe, the back-
ground scenery, the railroad cars (explicitly
replicated for this movie) add an aura of
authenticity to the film. The film succeeds in
its historicity.
Yet the film is not a replica of the book on
which it is based. It shouldn't be. The excel-
lent study by Paredes creates the myth and
adds to the legend. The film with Olmos in
his very best interpretation recreates a spir-
itual history and allows Gregorio Cortez to
converse silently throughout history. The
film is not a study nor a true interpretation
ultimately, but a different metaphor, as
human as the one wrought by the book. It is
clear and true poetry, the stuff of humans.

Tombs Rivera, Chancellor of the University of
California at Riverside, is a frequent
spokesperson for the Chicano community.


r --- -__z~--=r;c~-"==s3 ~S~CS---; ~fi -_r= --~-~-;==~`~-~=L~
,;C--r~z~T-- --~-

Sodomy and the Perception of
Evil: English Sea Rovers in the
Seventeenth-Century Caribbean,
B.R. Burg. 215 pp. New York
University Press, 1983. $20.00

It is not easy to critique a book which
appears to be a historical study of gay
pirates in the seventeenth-century Ca-
ribbean but whose author immediately an-
nounces that his study is "simply not
history." Normally, a reviewer attempting to
reveal such a book's virtues and defects
would ask: Is there empirical evidence to
support the claim that pirates lived in little
sodomitic shipboard communities? Do
theory and evidence come together in a
manner that satisfies the cannons of mod-
ern historical scholarship? But professor
B.R. Burg seemingly pulls the rug out from
under would-be detractors by insisting that
his book should be categorized not as his-
tory but as interdisciplinary sociology, spec-
ulative social science. By denying to us the
evidential base for examining the thesis that
piracy spawned floating gay communes are
we thus left with the task of simply admiring
a clever speculation, a fascinating pos-
sibility or, conversely, denouncing imagina-
tion without a solid empirical base?

In the final analysis, however, Burg's the-
sis must be viewed and reviewed as a histor-
ical work. To open the door to a new field of
historical possibilities-history as it might
have occurred-without responsibility for
evidence, may be worthwhile and fruitful,
but it is also dangerous. Professor Burg's
disclaimer aside, it is essential that we ask
whether or not there is evidence that piracy
and sodomy go together like love and
Let us begin with praise. This is a well-
written book and the author has done a fine,
lawyer-like job of building a circumstantial
case for linking piracy with the gay life. Burg
argues that pirates were programed from
childhood for a homosexual lifestyle. Pre-
sumably they were products of all-male en-
vironments from their earliest years. Many
had been part of roving bands of ex-appren-
tices where the absence of women created
sexual and presumably nonsexual male
bonding. Introduced to sea life at an early
age, whether in the navy or on commercial
vessels, they lived without women. If they
journeyed to the Caribbean in the seven-
teenth century, they encountered societies
in which women were scarce. By the time
they chose a piratical lifestyle, male relation-
ships would be all they had ever known. The
reason there is no clear evidence for gay

pirates depends on Burg's argument that in
seventeenth-century England and the West
Indies, there was high tolerance for sodomy.
In effect, it was not considered worthy of
comment. Only the abnormal elicits reac-
tion, and gay pirates were about as news-
worthy in the seventeenth century as
intramarital sexuality. Copulating pirates
would have been about as interesting as
copulating flies.
One of Burg's unstated assumptions is
that sex drives are more or less constant
over time, and that as in modern prison
populations, if you close down one set of
sexual alternatives other options will be
opened up. This may be true but it ignores
the views of Edward Shorter and others that
for dietary and environmental reasons, sex
drives and concommitantly sexual experi-
mentation were probably much less in ear-
lier times (The Making of the Modern
Family, Basic Books, New York, 1975). In-
deed the growing concern with sexuality of
all kinds in the eighteenth and, in particular,
the nineteenth centuries might be a func-
tion of increased sexual activity. In addition,
Burg is almost painfully anxious to see sex-
ual liaison behind activities that might be
explained in other ways. There is, after all,
such a thing as strong male friendships,
and relationships between a man and a boy

can be both deep and powerful, and non-
sexual. It is certainly understandable that
nonsexual male bonding would be as
strong in pirates as it has often been in the
navy and army. After reading Burg one be-
comes very suspicious of such innocents
as the Lone Ranger and Tonto. Where there
is smoke (male-male relationships) there is
fire (sodomy) is not entirely convincing in
this case.
There are specific aspects of the Burg
case for sodomitic pirates which need com-
ment. As I have noted, a good part of the
case depends on the view that silence in the
seventeenth century means acceptance of
sodomy. He may well be correct and his
case is a strong one. Yet there are problems:
in his desire to prove acceptance of sod-
omy, the author often ignores alternative
explanations. At one point he writes of a
William Holdbrook's sentence to the pillory
for sodomy and notes that the crowd was
"more entertained than enraged." The evi-
dence for this is that the would-be sodomite
was pelted only with "rotten eggs and cu-
cumbers." That they did not use more
deadly missiles hardly indicates that sod-
omities were amusing fellows. While there
was violence against individuals in the pil-
lory, it was never a punishment that called
for public maiming or death by paving

stone or brick. The idea was public
shame-not carte blanche to the mob to
execute offenders.
Interpretation of evidence is also a prob-
lem in Burg's chapter on how homosexuals
became pirates. Wandering bands of young
male vagrants might have meant early in-
troduction to the gay life. It is also possible
that while these bands were bound together
for economic survival and friendship they
did have ready access to women. There
were inexpensive prostitutes in the towns as
well as women as desperate for a bit of food
as the runaway servants and apprentices
that Burg describes. Even for the poorest,
heterosexual sex might have been available
outside the structure of the wandering
The assumption that sex drives are con-
stant throughout history leads Burg to
claim that homosexuals joined the navy be-
cause relations with females did not matter.
Yet if Shorter is correct, it is possible that
sexual opportunity mattered not at all. The
lower classes in society, deprived of nutri-
tional benefits, might have had no interest
in sex-homo- or heterosexual. It may be
true that the Royal Navy was manned by the
impotent or by those for whom an occa-
sional fling in port was quite enough sex for
the upcoming year.

One minor point, Burg accepts un-
critically John Esquemeling's questionable
account of torture attributed to Henry Mor-
gan and his crew (The Buccaneers of
America, Dover Publications, Inc., New
York, 1967) and seems unaware of Dudley
Pope's biography of Morgan (The Buc-
caneer King, Dodd Mead, New York,
1978), which makes a convincing case that
these were products of the author's
In spite of these reservations, there is
much to admire in Burg's book. It may well
be true that sodomy was tolerated in the
seventeenth century and that pirate com-
munities were sodomitic ones. There are
times when highly speculative books like
this one have more value than empirical
works on uninteresting topics. Speculation
promotes historical discourse and chal-
lenges other historians to study topics ig-
nored by more traditional scholars. On the
other hand, calling his study speculative so-
cial science does not excuse Burg from
closer attention to the evidential base and
alternative explanations. D

Arthur N. Gilbert teaches history at the Univer-
sity of Denver Among his works are In Search
of a Meaningful Past and "Buggery and the
British Navy" (Journal of Social History).



An Aristocratic Briton Views

the Twilight of Empire

Thoughts on a Travel Classic

Reviewed by Daniel J. Crowley

The Traveller's Tree: A Journey
Through the Caribbean Islands,
Patrick Leigh Fermor. 403 pp.
John Murray, London; Harper and
Row, New York, 1950.

P atrick Leigh Fermor's The Traveller's
Tree is the last of a long line of dis-
tinguished travel books on the Carib-
bean (see box, page 38). Although a few
historians still boggle, ethnographers have
long made use of the information and in-
sights to be found in travel books such as
these, making allowances for the prejudices
of the authors and their epochs. Leigh Fer-
mor's contribution is valuable in a number
of ways: his posture of amused detachment
belongs to a much earlier age than the cru-
cial and turbulent 1940s when he visited the
islands; his presumed readers were Euro-
pean dilettanti like himself and included
neither grubby American scholars nor irate
island nationalists; his eye was sharp and
his perceptions surprisingly accurate; and
most of all, they were phrased in the archaic,
slightly overripe, epigrammatic style of Al-
exander Woollcott's belles lettres.
Of Irish and English ancestry, Patrick
Michael Leigh Fermor (the double name is
occasionally hyphenated and always used
together) was born 11 February 1915, the
son of Lady Eileen Taaffe Ambler Leigh Fer-
mor and Sir Lewis Leigh Fermor, O.B.E.,
ER.S.; he was educated at King's School,
Canterbury. At 18 he demonstrated his in-
terest in "the traditional life of remote areas"
by walking from Rotterdam to Constantino-
ple. He spent four years in the Balkans to
improve his Greek, at the end of which
time he published a translation of
Rodocamachi's Forever Ulysses which
was accepted by the Book of the Month
At the beginning of World War I1 he joined
the Irish Guards; and in 1942-44 as a Com-
mando Major in the disguise of a shepherd,
he organized the resistance in Crete which
culminated in his kidnapping the Nazi com-

Daniel J. Crowley is Professor of Anthropology
and Art at the University of California, Davis.

mandant, General Karl Kreipe, and then
successfully smuggling him out to the Brit-
ish authorities in Cairo. These exploits were
described in a novel, Ill Met By Moonlight,
by Major W. Stanley Moss. Compared to
Lawrence of Arabia for "his gift of lan-
guages and his audacity," "Paddy" Leigh
Fermor is said to have wiled away his time
in the Cretan mountains by readingAlice in
Wonderland and Oxford Book of Verse. In
recognition of his war records, he was made
honorary citizen of Heraklion, received the
Distinguished Service Cross, the O.B.E.
and, ironically enough, the gratitude of ex-
General Kreipe, whose two remaining Nazi
colleagues in Crete were executed by the
Greeks as war criminals.
After a year in Germany and another as
deputy director of the British Institute in
Athens, Leigh Fermor went to the Carib-
bean in late 1947. He began his first book,
"a personal, random account of an autumn
and winter spent in wandering through
these islands" which he trusted would not
be confused with a guidebook to the area.
By May 1950, the preface had been signed,
the book having been written charac-
teristically in a Devon hotel, at a Benedictine
monastery in Normandy, and at Tivoli, out-
side Rome. His old friend lan Fleming is
quoted on the dust jacket epitomizing this
real-life James Bond's work as "one of the
great travel books." He was not alone in his
admiration for Leigh Fermor's fledgling
effort. The Traveller's Tree won the
Heinemann Foundation prize for literature
in 1950 and the Kemsley prize in 1951. Its
author was described as "a born writer," and
"the ideal traveler, inquisitive, humorous, in-
terested in everything"; for once the re-
viewers were not exaggerating.
The title derives from an Encyclopaedia
Britannica article on the Madagascar fan
palm which, "like all the human beings who
now inhabit the Antilles, was originally a
stranger to these regions." The format,
type-face, and map lettering look curiously
old fashioned, and it must be admitted that
the viewpoint too is oddly out of date. To be
appreciated fairly, this book must be seen
for what it is-a perceptive but essentially
naive view of some Caribbean societies

written in a genre that might be entitled
"Aristocratic Briton Views the Twilight of
Empire." According to a review in News-
week, 5 November 1951, Leigh Fermor
possesses "a spirit common to postwar
English writers, a sort of polite disinterest, a
willingness to learn coupled with a suspi-
cion of false enthusiasm, a civilized friend-
liness and a conscientiousness that
apparently led him to every village, land-
mark, museum, and library, coupled with
doubt that the whole business was worth
This oft-expressed tentativeness is some-
thing of a mask which slips occasionally to
reveal a pukka sahib at bay, a worldly Euro-
pean alternately fascinated and repelled by
tropical vigor in the midst of squalor. He
makes no pretense of scientific objectivity,
using such weighted terms as "primitive"
with abandon, contrasting "the descen-
dants of jungle dwellers" with "the most
civilized race in the world," by whom he
means the Greeks, an evaluation shared
neither by Turks nor by most anthropolo-
gists. He also consciously "jettisoned" most
discussion of politics and economics, but
considering his defense of French cultural
colonialism, this may not be too serious a
loss. His forte is his keen eye, his witty
tongue, and his free-flowing pen as he
views the islands in historic depth just be-
fore the rise of nationalism, which brought
more changes in its wake than any event
since emancipation.

Uneven Contributions
Leigh Fermor's specific contributions to
Caribbean ethnography are considerable,
but uneven in quality. His extended discus-
sion of Haitian folk religion is based on lead-
ing authorities plus very careful observation
and analysis, as are the shorter reports on
Jamaican Rastafari, Pocomania, and Ma-
roons, the Dominica Caribs, the poor-white
Santois off Guadeloupe, Trinidad East Indi-
ans, Carriacou fishermen and others. He
managed to understand the rationale be-
hind serial monogamy and so-called il-
legitimacy. His linguistic theory is badly
dated in his discussion of the French
Creole language, which he describes as


"maimed," "mutilated," "childish," "and
made up of a succession of heavy labial
noises, nasal inflections, and loud quacks,"
though he is fairminded enough to admit
that it is indeed a language which has "tan-
talizing charm," and is "a good medium for
humor and epigram."
His ethnomusicology and ethno-
choreography are equally suspect in his
highly questionable theory about African
elements in the Martinique begulne. But
his historical vignettes are unforgettable,
particularly the legend of Aim&e du Buc de
Rivry, the Martiniquaise girl who was en-

Travel Classics
Bremer, Frederika. The Homes of the New
World. New York, 1868.
Breton, Raymond. Grammalre Caralbe.
Auxerre; Bouquet, 1664.
Carmichael, Mrs. A. Domestic Manners
and Social Conditions of the White,
Coloured, and Negro Populations of
the West Indies. London: Whittaker
Treicher, 1833.
Coleridge, H. Six Months In the West In-
dies in 1925. London: John Murray,
Froude, James Anthony. The English in
the West Indies, or The Bow of Ulys-
ses. London: Longmans, 1888.
Heam, Lafcadio. Two Years in the French
West Indies. New York and London:
Harper, 1923.
Humboldt, Alexander von. Personal Nar-
rative of Travels to the Equinoctial
Regions of the New Continent During
the Years 1799-1804. London: Long-
mans, 1819-1829.
Kingsley, Charles. At Last: A Christmas
In the West Indies. London: Macmillan,
Labat, Jean Baptiste. Voyage aus Iles de
l'Amerlque (Antilles), 1693-1705).
Paris: Duchartre, 1931.
Lewis, Matthew Gregory "Monk." Journal
of a West India Proprietor. London,
Naipaul, V. S. The Middle Passage.
London: A. Deutsch, 1962.
Rochefort, Charles. Histoire Naturelle et
Morale des lies Antilles de l'Amert-
que. Rotterdam: R. Leers, 1681.
SchBpf, Johann David. Riese durch
einige der mittlem and sildlichen Ver-
einigten nord-amerikanischen
staaten. Erlangen: J. J. Palm, 1788.
Stedman, Capt J. G. Narrative of a Five
Years' Expedition Against the Re-
volted Negroes of Suriname. London,
du Tertre, Jean Baptiste. Histoire Gener-
ale des lies de S. Chrlstophe, de la
Guadeloupe, It de la Martinique, et
autres dans I'Amerique. Paris: Lan-
glois, 1654.
Trollope, Anthony. The West Indies and
the Spanish Main. New York: Harper,
Wilson, Edmund. Red, Black, Blond, and
Olive, Studies In Four Civilizations.
New York: Oxford, 1956.

slaved by Barbary pirates but became the
Sultana Valideh of Turkey; the destruction of
St Pierre by Mome Pel6e; the end of the
Paleologus dynasty of Byzantium in Bar-
bados; the conquest of Diamond Rock by
the French and the St. Lucian Pitons by the
British; the Jamaican connections of the
Barretts of Wimpole Street and the Gothic
novelist "Monk" Lewis; the now-extinct
Jews of Statia; the French attitude toward
Captain Bligh and breadfruit; and the travels
of Pere Labat between 1693 and 1705,
which Leigh Fermor sees as prefiguring his
own voyage.
Perhaps the most insightful parts of the
book are Leigh Fermor's changing views of
race relations. On his first stroll in
Guadeloupe, a black woman shouts at him,
"Eh bien,... quest que vous regarded
par ici? Vous &tes blancs et nous
sommes noirs. Et alors? [Well, what are
you looking at? You're white and we're
black. So?]," and the question became a
preoccupation with him. Through his con-
nections, he meets aristocratic French Cre-
ole whites, and faithfully reports their ultra-
conservative attitudes, often with disap-
proval. He seems shocked to discover that
poor whites exist, and even more "that they
have turned themselves into Negroes in all
but colour,... would now feel more at
home in the African jungle than in Brittany,"
and worst of all, "are more inexpert in cor-
rect French and more illiterate than the
humblest black inhabitants." But he is im-
pressed favorably by the sophistication and
humane Negritude of Aim6 Cesaire and Dr.
Robert Rose-Rosette, and by the successful
miscegenation of a black Martinican re-
sistance comrade with a Levantine Greek
girl. He contrasts the allegedly easy social
relationships between whites and blacks in
Dominica to the strict but covert segrega-
tion then practiced in Barbados and Ja-
maica, and concludes that "many travellers
find in the islands a tropical exhuberance of
exactly those values to which they had most
joyfully bidden farewell in England."
His deft sketches of the social structures
of Martinique and Haiti, and East In-
dian/black and Carib/black relationships in
Trinidad and Dominica are informed, if now
somewhat out of date. His treatment of
black people is less sure because, although
he knew such stars as "Lappe" O'Reilly,
Wilfredo Lam, Lorimer Denis, and Dr. Rose-
Rosette, he apparently did not develop any
close ties with lower-class blacks. His de-
scriptions of Rastafari, Pocomania, and
Vodun, although painstakingly detailed and
judiciously fairminded, make no pretense
of empathy, falling back rather on psycho-
logical explanations. Even so, his descrip-
tions of the voudou sessions on the
outskirts of Port-au-Prince are probably the
most graphic that have ever been written.
Because he has read the best authorities
and talked to the leading scholars, his infor-

nation on ethnic origins and folk religion is
largely correct and his synthesis impressive.
Rural St. Kitts villages resemble little "Af-
rican-looking kraals of wooden houses"
whose inhabitants descend from "the war-
rior tribes of Ashanti and Dahomey." He is
totally ignorant of, and hence fascinated by,
heavily curled hair and its suitable coiffures,
probably the last Englishman to be so in-
trigued. At the end of his voyage, he charac-
teristically perceives the crucial issues and
recognizes the Caribbean reality, "black
means poor and white, rich," and is dis-
quieted by the sight of a Grenadian "peas-
ant carefully sharpening his cutlass."

He seemed shocked to
discover that poor whites

Like Labat, Leigh Fermor's interests are
broad rather than deep, and he is never shy
in making his opinions known. Among his
bites noires are tropical foliage, especially
bougainvillea, travel by plane, and all as-
pects of American popular culture includ-
ing Jim Crow laws, "coke," "pop" music,
and urban "development" that has made
Charlotte Amalie "just a fraction cleaner
and brighter than is natural."
His likes are just as apparent and include
mouthwatering descriptions of tropical
fruits, picnics, Labat's gastronomic adven-
tures, and the menus of Martinique planta-
tion houses. He also cannot resist
architecture, good or bad, his taste running
to Georgian, even the gauche mock-Geor-
gian monstrosities in Barbados, while he
dislikes the fantastic Eiffel-influenced Bibli-
othbque Schoelcher in Fort-de-France and
the incomparable Charles Addamseque
Victorian Government House of St. Lucia.
He cannot resist retelling tales, not only
the pseudo-historical set pieces listed
above, but also more humble yarns about a
man who could handle snakes unscathed,
tales about ghosts, Ti Bolom, and mon-
stres, Mama G'l'eau in her sacred lake,
treasure-hunting, child sacrifice, slaves
being thrown overboard in chains, dogs
trained to bark at blacks but not at whites,
and long lists of amusing names of brothel-
bars and decorated trucks. Carnival is men-
tioned or described in Martinique, Trinidad,
and Cuba, including the story of lepers who
escaped into the crowd in costume, later to
infect all the books in the library. Music and
dance are other popular themes, and he
quotes five verses of a Dominican calypso
as folk poetry. His description of a Trinidad
steelband, probably the prototype of Merry-
makers, is particularly significant because it
is the first by an outsider, and because of the


now-archaic terminology the bandsmen
were using. Less perceptively, he found pre-
Columbian rock engravings risible in the
extreme, and had little better to say of
Shakespeare's Julius Caesar as per-
formed in St. Lucia, or "Mackandal," (in
blackface) in Haiti.

Words and Details
Leigh Fermor is intoxicated with words and,
to a certain extent, with his own ability to put
them together. A reviewer of his later novel,
The Violins of Saint-Jacques (1954) de-
scribed it as "written with deliberate, some-
times overconscious artifice, scattered with
French and native words and adored with
litanies of picturesque names." One re-
viewer remarked tartly that "In patches, the
author can write as well as any man alive,"
but recommended that a hard-boiled editor
trim it by several thousand words. But still,
the words are impressive: Jamaican revival-
ists are "Pocomaniacs," the political struc-
ture of the Maroons is a "hospodarate" and
the Caribs an "elective voivode." Combes,
appanage, fanes, fustian, eupepsia, euphu-
istic, sward, cantrips, and historion send
one back to the old dictionary. Similarly
Istanbul must be called Constantinople, its
Greek name until 1453, and the French
spelling is de rigeur for the inhabitants of
Greenland and Northern Canada, the
Vivid writing is the rule: the Pitch Lake
"has the colour and texture of a gram-
ophone record a hundred and fourteen
acres in extent," and the asphalt itself is
"black gruyere"; Guadeloupe trees are
"giant pale green parsley" and their shade
"as welcome as a waterfall"; Trinidad Saga
Boys' neckties "have the splendor of lanced
ulcers"; on the map, Carriacou follows Gre-
nada "like an abandoned puppy"; night de-
scends "all in one piece, like a shutter"; a
bandstand in Grenada looks "like an empty
birdcage"; during a storm at sea, the trav-
elers "lowered comforting stalactites of
whiskey down [their] throats"; in Jamaica
they traversed "Hanover Street, down the
mouldering length of which a dejected and
unconvincing brothel-quarter damply
blossoms"; and possibly most memorable
of all to anyone who has lived in West Indian
boarding houses, the desserts in Sutton
Hall Hotel, Roseau, "were marvels which
only the names of Crimean battles seemed
to fit: Inkerman Mould, the Redan,
Sebastopol Pudding and Balaclava
Helmet," crowned by "coffee that must have
been made out of a bedstead which had
been hammered to powder." Although
sometimes a bit contrived, such facile writ-
ing admirably fulfills the stated goal of the
book, "to retransmit to the reader whatever
interest and enjoyment we encountered. In
a word, to give pleasure."
In spite of his colonialist posture, his polit-
ical naivet6, and the unseemly levity with

which he dares describe other cultures,
Leigh Fermor is a clear-eyed observer with
an instinct for the significant detail. He is
rarely dead wrong, and is never fooled for
long by his infinitely wily informants. At his
best, he is a brilliant observer and analyst of
culture. In his preface to The Traveller's
Tree he summed up, a quarter of a century
before David Lowenthal's sweaty synthesis
(in West Indian Societies), the central par-

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Continued from page 9

Often this decrease in production is con-
centrated in the more remunerative export
sector since it tends to have been monopo-
lized by elites (precisely because it was
more remunerative).
A complementary set of policies de-
signed to aid impoverished sectors absorbs
large amounts of resources without a
corresponding rise in output--at least in
the short run-because the resources are
principally for consumption and not invest-
ment. Together the two sets of policies pro-
duce an economic crisis. In short, "supply"
decreases and "demand" increases. Given
the dependence of small developing coun-
tries on international trade, the focus of the
crisis is usually the balance of payments
and the availability of foreign exchange.
Drawing down reserves and foreign as-
sistance and borrowing, can help cover the
resulting imbalance, but ultimately they are
likely to prove insufficient.
The examination of four sectors of Nic-
aragua provides interesting insights into
how a revolutionary regime is likely to at-
tempt to cope with the crisis. The nature of
the postrevolutionary crisis is inherently in-
flationary-expansionary fiscal policies
(and undoubtedly expansionary monetary
policies as well) coupled with falling pro-
duction of essential goods and services. In
Nicaragua, ambitious government fiscal
policies have resulted in an enormous gov-
emment deficit There is an equally enor-


mous balance-of-payment deficit, precipi-
tated mostly by reduced exports, but also by
increased imports.
Too much money chasing too few goods
ordinarily results in inflation. In order to pro-
tect the purchasing power of lower classes,
though, regimes are likely to try price
controls, as has been the case in Nicaragua.
Of course controlling prices of consumer
goods in a period of generally rising prices
hurts producers, who are likely to be experi-
encing at least some rising costs. The Nic-
araguan case suggests that revolutionary
regimes are likely to slight producers in
order to aid consumers. What begins as
hostility toward wealthy producers and a
commitment to improving the consump-
tion of the poor, slowly becomes a bias
against the producer and for the consumer.
In Nicaragua, marginal campesinos
cultivating basic grains have been hurt by
low prices for their crops as much as mem-
bers of the "bourgeoisie" who produce
The government may be all the more
disposed to control prices of domestically
produced goods if imported goods are in-
creasing in price, which is likely if, as in the
case of Nicaragua, there is a large deficit in
the balance of payments. In effect the gov-
ernment may try to control prices where it
can. The examination of representative Nic-
araguan agricultural sectors shows, how-
ever, that low prices can be a disincentive to
increasing production, or even to maintain-
ing existing levels of production. Price dis-
incentives may even offset specific
government policies designed to stimulate
production. This was expressed most viv-

idly by a Nicaraguan peasant who asked,
"What good is a land reform if you have to
sell your crops to the government for a low
price?" While in the short run certain sec-
tors may benefit from controlled prices, ulti-
mately all sectors of the economy, and the
polity at large, may suffer if there is a result-
ing decline in output. If taken too far, Mao's
statement about the Soviet experience
"draining the pond to catch the fish" may
Although from an economic point of
view the price controls of the new regime
are not prudent, there are political reasons
that explain-though not necessarily jus-
tify-the policies. The first is ideological;
production for private gain is not held in
high esteem. The second is simple expedi-
ency. Price controls do provide some short-
term relief, and regimes under pressure
often do not have the political "resources"
to think beyond the short term. Finally, there
is urban bias. Urban dwellers are always
more visible and politically more powerful
than rural dwellers. It is important to ap-
pease urban constituents, and low food
prices are a convenient policy instrument
for this. Of course, governments are usually
aware of the economic costs incurred by a
lack of incentives to producers. Govern-
ments may, on occasion, raise producer
prices in well-publicized attempts to offer
incentives, but producers are likely to al-
ways be belatedly trying to catch up with
rising production costs.
The complexity of the FSLN's relation-
ship to private agricultural producers sug-
gests an important lesson: No simple
dichotomy can be drawn between the
"state" and "private" sectors though, of
course, there are obvious differences be-
tween the two. The new regime has such a
wide range of policy instruments at its com-
mand that it decisively influences the "pri-
vate" sector. Most of these policy
instruments entail intervention in the major
markets for the products affecting pro-
ducers-the markets for the products they
consume and sell, and for land, labor and
Recognizing the extent to which the state
affects the private sector is important be-
cause it can explain the latter's behavior.
The state and the private sector pursue dif-
ferent goals, and each can aid or hinder the
other, depending on the degree of comple-
mentarity or convergence of these goals.
Private producers operate under an invest-
ment logic based on a ratio between gain
and risk. The logic of the state is different. If
it intervenes in the markets affecting pro-
ducers, it must take their interests and in-
centives into account if it wants them to
continue meeting existing output levels. It
may be regrettable that private producers
will not produce in the absence of a gain,
but it certainly should not be surprising. In
summary, if the state is dependent on the

cooperation of other actors, it must take
into consideration the incentives that these
actors respond to.
What is especially interesting about the
Nicaraguan case is that it suggests that win-
ning government concessions, such as the
price of output, is largely dependent upon
economic strength and not the reverse, as
revolutionary rhetoric would suggest Fur-
thermore, the state-or at least parts of it-
is not above putting its narrow self-interest
above the welfare of weaker strata of society.
This is exemplified in the pricing policies for
maize and rice. Peasants growing maize

have received a "terrible" price, whereas the
large, capital-intensive rice producers re-
ceive a "good" price. The stated explanation
is that the private rice producers have more
clout with the government, and the govem-
ment itself is a large rice producer (state
farms collaborate in the drive for a high
price so they can show healthy financial
statements). Probably even more telling is
the fact that the hated private cotton
growers have received the most remunera-
tive price incentives. Throughout the agri-
cultural sector it appears that prices for
producers' output depend not on their class


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status but on: 1) the importance of the crop
to the national economy, and 2) the elas-
ticity of supply.
That the state and the private sector can
have conflicting interests is so obvious that
it hardly needs to be stated. What is not
always so clear, however, is that the same
can be true even for those marginal sectors
that the revolutionary regime proclaims it-
self committed to aid. For example, the
marginal traditional coffee growers in Nic-
aragua have suffered from government pol-
icies as much as large technified coffee
producers to whom the revolution owes
nothing. All govemments seek to maintain
"solvency," and that imposes a need to
gamer resources such as foreign exchange.
Rhetoric to the contrary, the proclivity is al-
ways to obtain them wherever easiest In the
case of Nicaragua, where the state has in-
creased its power, economic exigencies
have led to a heavy "tax" (camouflaged
though it may be by relying on manipula-
tion of the exchange rate) on agricultural
producers-no matter what their class
The deterioration of the Nicaraguan
economy has been so extensive, and the
reactivation of the economy so difficult, that
the promised "liberation" of peasants and
laborers has not been forthcoming. Instead,

peasants suffer from low prices as the new
regime hastily tries to protect urban con-
sumers, and from neglect as the state con-
centrates on the management of large state
farms that are judged more important for
the reactivation of the economy. Laborers
suffer from an enforced policy of "austerity
and efficiency" that demands continued
sacrifices, including trade-union rights, as
well as from continued salary freezes. This
has resulted not because the Sandinista rul-
ing elite has desired it; there is no doubt that
they would like to provide a better life for
Nicaraguan peasants and laborers. Rather,
the exigencies of the situation have made
the continued impoverishment of peasants
and laborers a structural necessity.
Not surprisingly, postrevolutionary re-
gime policies that change the economic
fortunes of different classes have important
political consequences. The responses of
poor laborers and agricultural producers to
the policies of the Sandinista government
shows with piercing clarity that the political
allegiance of classes is based on their per-
ception of their well-being, and not on ideo-
logical grounds. This is as true with lower
classes as it is with upper classes. Ideology
is important in shaping perceptions, but ab-
solute and relative changes in material well-
being are decisive in shaping allegiance.
Legitimacy for a revolution depends on
political issues; legitimacy for a postrevolu-
tionary regime depends on economic per-
formance. Hence, a revolutionary regime
must take care not to undermine the welfare
of those sectors which it is committed to
assist. This is especially important if a revo-
lutionary regime is threatened by counter-
revolution; if lower classes become
dissatisfied and cynical, counterrevolution-
aries-domestic or international-may be
able to gamer strength that they otherwise
could not hope to gain. This has clearly
happened recently both in Nicaragua and
Mozambique. It is a truism of both revolu-
tionary and conterrevolutionary insurgency
that success depends upon generating
some popular support or, at least, the tacit
support of those disaffected with the exist-
ing regime.
Finally, the examination of the four sec-
tors of Nicaragua's agricultural economy
illustrates the limits of what "politics" can
and cannot accomplish. Nationalization or
redistributive policies cannot alone solve
the principal problem plaguing the produc-
tion of maize, beans and coffee: low yields.
These crops are cultivated principally by
marginal peasants using a low level of tech-
nology. Raising the low yields of small pro-
ducers necessitates introducing them to
improved cultivation practices, providing
them with needed inputs, and most impor-
tantly, making sure that it is in their per-
ceived interest to adopt improved cultiva-
tion practices. Undertaking this is slow,
expensive and difficult; however, there is no
alternative. [



In accepting the Fourth Annual Caribbean Review Award at the recent
Caribbean Studies Association meetings in Santo Domingo, Professor
Sidney W. Mintz of The Johns Hopkins University offered the
following comments:

"Dr. Levine, President Maingot, Esteemed Colleagues, Ladies
and Gentlemen:
"It is a genuine honor to have been chosen to receive the Caribbean
Review Award, and it is a keen pleasure to be the first recipient to be able
to accept the award personally.
"The Caribbean Studies Association provides all of us with an
intellectual vehicle that transcends cultural and language barriers, while
offering us a wider and more embracing vision than any single academic
discipline. It gives me added pleasure to accept the Caribbean Review
Award during the Eighth Annual Meeting of this cross-cultural,
interdisciplinary, pan-Caribbean Association.
"As we meet here in the cradle of Hispanic spirit in the New World, I
would like to express my appreciation not only to Dr. Levine and the
members of the Award Committee who have shown me this honor, but also
to our Dominican colleagues who worked so long and so hard to ensure
such an agreeable and successful convention.
"Thank you."
The Caribbean Review Award is an annual award to honor an individual
who has contributed to the advancement of Caribbean intellectual life.
Sidney W. Mintz joins previous recipients Gordon K. Lewis, Philip M.
Sherlock, and Aim6 C6saire.
Nominations for the fifth annual Caribbean Review Award-to be
presented at the Ninth Annual meeting of the Caribbean Studies Association
to be held in St. Kitts in Spring 1984-should be sent to The Editor,
Caribbean Review, Florida International University, Miami, Florida 33199.
The award recognizes individual effort irrespective of field, ideology,
national origin, or place of residence. In addition to a plaque the recipient
receives an honorarium of $250, donated by the International Affairs Center
of Florida International University.

Continued from page 17

to place the white powder of an arsenic herb
between the stiffened lips to guarantee a
peaceful sleep. They have been known to
inject formaldehyde into a dead person, put
a bullet in the skull and sometimes bury the
body face downwards with a dagger in the
hand so the "dead" person can resist the
sorcerer when he tries to extract him from
his resting place.
In his Philologie Creole published in
1937, Jules Faine says "zombie" comes
from the bonda language of Africa (zumbi)
and was probably transmitted to Haiti by
Portuguese slave traders. He writes, "zom-
bie ... designates in general a revenant, a
phantom, an otherworldly spirit. In popular
belief, certain sorcerers have the power, by
means of charms and spells, to cause ap-
parent death to individuals and then to
bring them backto life again, even after they
have been buried. These resuscitated per-
sons, only half-conscious, are then isolated
in distant parts of the country and utilized
for field work. Nourished on food from
which salt is rigorously excluded, they are
thought to be able to regain their natural
senses and all their mental faculties if they
taste the least grain of this substance."
In his book The Haitian People, James
G. Leybum notes that, "In a mental atmos-
phere of credulity, coincidence often makes
magic seem to work. Belief gives power to
the charm or rite." Yet precisely because of
this, Douyon says he has gone to great
lengths to separate the magic and ritual
from the scientific. For this reason Douyon
is sometimes at loggerheads with the
bocors who are often indignant at his
efforts to establish the material side and not
accept magic or spiritual explanations.
A graduate of Haiti University Medical
School, class of 1954, Douyon did two
years of social service in rural Haiti after
graduation and then went to Canada for
four years' residency in psychiatry at McGill.
He first became interested in zombies dur-
ing his years at McGill. "I was participating
in a research program at the time called
'psychiatric driving' and the effects of drugs
in this program reminded me of what I had
heard about zombies while growing up in
Haiti." Whenever he returned to Haiti he
would gather plants commonly believed to
be used in the zombification process. Pro-
fessor Ewen Cameron at McGill was also
fascinated by zombies and among the
plants they tested was one commonly
known as concombe zombie. The plant
with a white flower, known as datura, is
believed to be the substance fed to zombies
to maintain their submissive state. Mice
were given a concoction of the datura
leaves and Douyon says they were no

longer aggressive and fell into a catatonic-
like state for three or three and a half hours.
When Dr. Cameron died, their research
work came to a halt

A determined Douyon finally convinced an
Artibonite bocor to show him how they pre-
pared the substance used to "kill" a person
targeted to be zombified. "We were expect-
ing a mysterious plant," recalls Douyon. "In-
stead we got a powder." The bocor agreed
to allow him to witness the preparation pro-
cess of the zombie powder, the first time two
years ago. Two cemetery workers were
contacted. A chef de section was paid off.
They went at night to a remote cemetery
where human bones were exhumed. In a
location that was carefully chosen by the
bocor, so the wind would blow away from
them and not into their faces and expose
them to the "poison," the process began.
(This bocor had one entire side of his face
much darker than the other, the result, he
said, of contact with the poisonous powder.)
Human bones were calcined over a fire and
then ground into a powder with pestle and
mortar. A black frog, known locally as a
crapaud bouga with bullae on its back and
said to be venomous had been killed earlier
and allowed to dry in the sun until a mold

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grew on its back. It was roasted over the fire
and also ground into a powder. A small sea
crab in its shell which is known by a variety
of names: ti soldat, pagure and Bernard
the hermit was roasted and powdered. To
these ingredients they then added other
powders popularly known in Haitian folk
medicines which Douyon says are nothing
but talcum powder with a little coloring and
impressive names. "These different
powders talcss) have supposedly different
virtues and they are the magical part of the
concoction," says Douyon. The zombie
powder, according to the Haitian psychia-
trist, is called tan' qa vui which translates
"wait until it's old," the meaning of which is
that one must wait until a quarrel has been
forgotten by his enemy before using it so
that one would not be suspected in the
zombie-making process.
It is the bocor's assistants, madiawes,
who prepare the powder. They are the poi-
son experts. (It is the bocor who then sells
the powder. The going price for a spoonful
of this powder is at least US$300.00.) The
powder is applied on a victim in the follow-
ing manner: The habits of the would-be
victim are carefully watched. Then the
madiaw6 assistant to the bocor places the
powder where it will come in contact with
the victim's skin. The powder is absorbed
cutaneously; the substance seems to be a
skin-acting poison.
The powder places the body in such a
deep anaesthetic state that vital signs prac-
tically disappear (to clinical examination),
and the metabolism and, therefore, oxygen
requirements of the body are reduced to a
minimum, making the "dead" able to sur-


vive for up to eight hours on the air and
oxygen trapped in the casket, Douyon hy-
pothesizes. Bocors, according to Douyon,
have confirmed that the poison works for
eight and a half hours, and if the person is
not brought to the surface before the end of
that period he dies of asphyxiation. Dou-
yon's bocor contacts insist there is no anti-
dote. Thebocors claim that after a period of
eight to eight and a half hours the poison
wears off to a point where the mortt" can be
Douyon's research into the reanimation
process has led to embarrassing and fright-
ening confrontations. The first time he ar-
ranged with a bocor to be in a cemetery at
midnight, where a freshly buried body
would be "raised," they arrived to find the
body already had been removed. The sec-
ond time Douyon was accompanied by a
film crew. They ended up jailed.
The reanimation process Douyon ob-
served was surrounded by rich voudou rit-
ual. "You must stay fully alert and able to
discard what is ritual and what is really re-
animation, as the bocors try to enmesh the
two and it's not always easy to discern what
is the truly efficacious maneuver," says
Douyon. At the cemetery in the dead of
night, a bottle of three-star Barbancourt
Rhum is sprinkled liberally on the cross of
Baron Samedi, Guardian of the Cemetery,
and then they flame it. A small amount of
money is left at the cross as an offering to
Baron Samedi. After dealing with Baron
Samedi, who represents the Guede spirit of
death, and appeasing him, the madiawes
go to the fresh grave which is a mound of
earth. They then take positions around the

mound and begin to pound on the earth as
if they were beating a mama drum in a
voudou service. They begin calling the per-
son's name. Tradition has it that they only
have to call the name out thirteen times, but
in the incident Douyon observed they beat
the earth for half an hour. The earth is then,
by some magical means, supposed to open
up and the "dead" person spring up into a
sitting position like a Jack-in-the-box, in an
"extreme state of excitement." The dead
person is then slapped three times on the
cheek and some formaldehyde is sprayed
on him.
In the classic painting by Hector Hyp-
polite (1946), father of Haitian primitive
painting, two roped zombies clad in white
robes are led away from their tomb while a
bocor holds the end of the rope and a bottle
of some substance in his hand. Tradition
has it that this is the antidote. They are so
excited they must be tied up. Then two men
known as "conductors" lead the "dead,"
now in a zombie state, to a destination
which is approximately eight kilometers
away. There two relay men await him to
move him along a new route and so on,
which means those who were at the grave-
side do not know the zombie's destination.
And those who are with the zombie to the
end do not know the origin.
The reanimation process, Douyon ad-
mits, is pure hypothesis.The bocors give no
explanation for their methods. It is specu-

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lated that the beating on the earth and
screams are amplified inside the wooden
casket which becomes a kind of resonance
box, thus stimulating the person's brain
while the effects of the drug already have
worn off. The person becomes excited in
his postanaesthetic state and jumps out.
The casket is said to be only six to ten
inches below the ground, yet the Haitian
rural code specifies that the casket be bur-
ied five feet five inches below the surface.
Douyon notes that zombies describe them-
selves as sitting on top of their grave and
watching their body float upward. He says
the phenomenon is called "autoscopy" and
has been reported in medical literature as
happening to people coming out of anaes-
thesia as well as to others who have been
revived after their hearts stopped.

Cheap Labor or Punishment?
One of the bocors, when asked how much
the zombification process costs, replied: "It
doesn't have a price." There are those who
believe that zombification is seldom done,
and only on a selective basis. The ratio of
success, because they are dealing with a
very potent toxin, may be extremely low.
Certainly no one keeps statistics or has any
knowledge of just how widespread and fre-
quent the process is.
A Haitian ethnologist who has studied the
voudou structure explains that contrary to
the folkloric explanation, zombies are not


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made to provide cheap labor. "Zombie
power could not compete with the cheap
labor already available in the Haitian coun-
tryside." The daily pay of a rural worker may
not reach two dollars. Because of his le-
thargic state the zombie is not a great
worker and therefore is a burden since he
must be fed and sheltered.
The reason for zombifying a person is
punishment, and perhaps the most terrible
punishment for a Haitian-slavery. When
someone transgresses a taboo within the
community in which he lives, a religious or
social transgression, or takes an action that
is considered to endanger the harmony of
the group, a secret society sits in judgment
of him. His family knows it. He is con-
demned or acquitted. At that moment the
secret society chooses the houngan or
bocor to take care of him.
Narcisse, for example, was causing trou-
ble for his brothers and the whole family
because he refused to agree to the sale of
the family-owned land, thereby preventing a
deal that was then in the interest of the
whole family. Ti-Femme, on the other hand,
wanted a man who was taboo.
The society then chooses someone from
the family-usually the one most damaged
by the person's transgression-to make
representation to the bocor. "You always
have a chance in voudou," according to the
ethnologist "When the zombifying powder
is applied the person starts to feel the ef-
fects, realizes what is happening, and he
may go to the houngan or bocor and re-
pent and receive an antidote."
This voudou expert describes as "beauti-
ful" the ritual in which a poisoned person is
given the antidote and saved from a fate
worse than death. The victim is treated as a
dead person and he is gradually brought
back to life as a poultice-like antidote is
applied to his or her arm during the cere-
mony. She believes this antidote may have
some of the original poison in it, but has no
idea of the anditode's chemistry-only that
it works. The upper arm is cut and the poul-
tice is applied. The ritual leaves the person
with a scar which is known as garde and
anyone in voudou, she says, recognizes that
this scar means that person was on the
threshold of becoming a zombie and re-
pented. There is still some contention as to
whether an antidote is given a person once
he is zombified and removed from his
Another use of the process falls in the
realm of pure black magic-when indi-
vidual passions such as love, hate or jeal-
ousy express themselves. Those involved in
such passionate problems go to a black
magician, a zobop, from a secret society
and ask him to make into a zombie the
person with whom they are at odds. In this
category money speaks.
To Haitians, whose ancestors threw off
their yoke in the only successful slave revolt

in the New World, zombification is a punish-
ment worse than death. For the person who
buys the zombies-and the bocors do sell
them we were told-it is for a mystical role,
or simply prestige. But because the zombie
is so weak he is not much of an asset on a
farm; in fact, an old creole proverb says a
badly cared-for field is a zombie field.

Scientific Study
Any scientific investigator, even if he finds or
buys the cooperation of a friendly bocor
who makes zombies will have to stop at a
certain point. No matter how much he
promises or pays the bocor, the revelations
of all the secrets could become a matter of
his life or death. "This knowledge came
from Africa," a voudou source explained. "It
has remained a secret all this time because
of the penalties involved for those who do
not guard the secrets. One would not sur-
vive after revealing such secrets, because
one is dealing with a people who know how
to use poison."
Haitian intellectuals are among the first to
deny that zombies exist. One intellectual
currently living abroad, Laennec Hurbon, is
writing a book refuting even scientific con-
clusions on zombies. His book has the title,
Le Barbare Imaginaire; Le Soupqon de
Sorcellerie en Haiti [The Imaginary Bar-
barian; The Suspicion of Sorcery In
Haiti]. He looks at the zombies as a part of
Haitian folklore. But even Hurbon is un-
aware of the recent results of the psycholog-
ical studies of Lamarque Douyon, or of the
ethnological work of E. Wade Davis of Har-
vard University's Botanical Museum.

Douyon is now observing and studying two
more zombies who are recuperating at the
Centre de Psychiatrie in Port-au-Prince.
Medula Charles, 24, is an only daughter of a
family in Gros Morne and 30-year-old
Wilfred Pierre is from Dessource. Douyon
describes them as extremely emaciated
and malnourished. "It's still very hard for
them to concentrate and they are halluci-
nating," he says. While they recognize their
parents, they refer to the bocor who kept
them as "papa." The two zombies were
found in the Artibonite Valley in ragged
clothes, feeble and stupefied. While the two
just happened to surface at the same time,
they were kept by individual bocors in dif-
ferent places and had nothing to do with
each other. The woman, according to her
family, had been sold to the bocor by a man
in the neighborhood whom she had recog-
nized as a robber. She reportedly gave birth
to a baby while a zombie. Neither family
wants to take back their children because
they are afraid of the commotion they
caused by their reappearance. Douyon is
attempting to secure their death certificates
from the chef de section, and he expects to
make a trip to their home villages soon. I


Continued from page 21

or grottos where they wait to be reborn.
Over the course of sixteen rebirths the same
ti bon ange gradually becomes a rich re-
pository of wisdom and knowledge.
After the last incarnation, the ti bon ange
goes to Damballah Wedo, the serpent of
the sky, a god of great benevolence and
trust and the reservoir of all spiritual
wisdom. There the ti bon ange finally be-
comes undifferentiatd as a part of the Djo,
the cosmic breath that envelopes the uni-
verse. This lengthy passage of the ti bon
ange corresponds to the metamorphosis
of the individual into pure spiritual energy.
Hence with the successive passing of gen-
erations, the individual, identified with the ti
bon ange, is transformed from the ances-
tor of a particular lineage, to the generalized
ancestor of all mankind. The devout
voudou follower, thus believing in the im-
mortality of the ti bon ange and the gros
bon ange, fears death not for its finality but
because it is a critical and dangerous pas-
sage during which time the five vital aspects
of man dissociate themselves.
Deaths may be natural or unnatural. Nat-
ural deaths, which are considered rare, are a
call from God mortt bon dieu) and exam-
ples might include a child dying from a
common childhood illness or an old man
passing away in his sleep. Unnatural deaths
include all accidents and inevitably involve
the intervention of malevolent forces. Any-
one who dies an unnatural death may be
made into a zombie.
To create a zombie, thebocor, the malev-
olent voudou priest, or the executioner
must capture the tibon ange of the victim.
This is a magical act that can be accom-
plished in a variety of ways. A particularly
powerful bocor, for example, may through
his magic gain control of the ti bon ange of
a sailor who dies at sea or of a Haitian who is
killed in a foreign land. Alternatively, the
bocor may capture the ti bon ange of the
living and hence indirectly cause the un-
natural death: the individual left without in-
telligence or will slowly perish. One way of
thus capturing the ti bon ange is to spread
poisons in the form of a cross on the thresh-
old of the victim's doorway. The magical
skill of the bocor guarantees that only the
victim will suffer. Yet a third means of gain-
ing control of the ti bon ange is to capture it
immediately following the death of the
corps cadaure, during the seven days that
it hovers around the corpse. Hence the
bocor may or may not be responsible for
the unnatural death of the victim, and the ti
bon ange may be captured by magic be-
fore or after the death of the corps cadaure.
The capture of the ti bon ange effects a

split in the spiritual components of the indi-
vidual and creates not one but two comple-
mentary kinds of zombies. The spirit
zombie, or the zombie of the ti bon ange
alone, is carefully stored in ajar and may be
later magically transmuted into insects, ani-
mals or humans in order to accomplish the
particular work ofthebocor. The remaining
spiritual components of man, the name,
the gros bon ange and the z'toile to-
gether form the zombi cadaure, the zom-
bie of the flesh.
Of critical interest to this ethnophar-
macological investigation is the fact that the
bocor, in creating the zombi cadaure, may
cause the prerequisite unnatural death not
by capturing the ti bon ange of the living
but by means of a poison which must be
applied directly to the victim. Rubbed into a
wound, or inhaled, the poison kills the
corps cadaure slowly, discreetly and
The subsequent resurrection of the
zombi cadaure in the graveyard requires a
particularly sophisticated knowledge of
magic. Above all the bocor must prevent
the transformations of the various spiritual
components that would normally occur at
the death of the body. The ti bon ange,
which may float above the body like a
"phosphorescent shadow" must be cap-
tured and prevented from reentering the
victim. One way to assure this is to beat the
victim violently. The gros bon ange must
be prevented from returning to its source.
The name must be retained to keep the
flesh from decaying. The zombi cadaure,
with its gros bon ange and name, can
function; however, separated from the ti
bon ange, the body is but an empty vessel,
subject to the direction of the bocor or of
whoever maintains control of the zombi ti
bon ange. It is the notion of alien, malev-
olent forces thus taking control of the indi-
vidual that is so terrifying to the voudou
believer. In Haiti, the fear is not of zombies,
but rather of becoming one. The zombi
cadaure, then, is a body without a complete
soul, matter without morality.
For the voudou believer, the creation of
either type of zombie is essentially a magi-
cal process. However, in the case of the
zombi cadaore, a slow-acting poison may
be used to induce discreetly the prerequisite
unnatural death. From ethnophar-
macological investigations, we know that
the poison acts to lower dramatically the
metabolic rate of the victim almost to the
point of death. Pronounced dead by attend-
ing physicians who check for only superfi-
cial vital signs, and considered physically
dead by family members and critically by
the zombie maker himself, the victim is, in
fact, by Western standards buried alive. Un-
doubtedly, in many cases the victim does
die, either from the poison itself, or by suf-
focation in the coffin. The widespread belief
in the veracity of physical zombies in Haiti,

however, is based on those instances where
the victim receives the correct dosage of the
poison, wakes up in the coffin and is drag-
ged out of the grave by the zombie maker.
The victim, affected by the drug, trau-
matized by the set and setting of the grave-
yard, and immediately beaten by the
zombie maker's assistants, is bound and
led before a cross to be baptized with a new
zombie name. After the baptism, he or she
is made to eat a paste containing a strong
dose of a potent psychoactive drug
(Datura Stramonium) which brings on an
induced state of psychosis. During the
course of that intoxication, the zombie is
carried off to be sold as a slave laborer, often
on the sugar plantations. O


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The 1983 Miami Conference and

Caribbean Basin Exposition

New Tools for a New Challenge

By Pam Diehl

The 1983 Miami Conference and In-
vestment Exposition, sponsored by the
Washington-based Caribbean/
Central American Action (C/CCA), will
be held 28 November through 3 De-
cember at the James L. Knight Con-
vention Center.
The largest public-private forum of
its kind, the conference will bring to-
gether all US government agencies
charged with CBI responsibilities as
well as key private sector entities con-
cerned with the economic future of Car-
ibbean basin countries. The 1982
conference attracted an audience in
excess of 1,000 and included the par-
ticipation of eight heads of government
from the Caribbean basin, as well as
Vice-President George Bush. An even
larger turnout is expected this year.
Heading an impressive list of featured
speakers will be President Luis Alberto
Monge of Costa Rica, Prime Minister
George Chambers of Trinidad-Tobago,
President Ricardo de la Espriella of
Panama and Governor Carlos
Romero-Barcel6 of Puerto Rico. Presi-
dent Reagan, US Secretary of Com-
merce Malcolm Baldrige and US
Secretary of Agriculture William Brock
have also been invited. In addition to
top-level officials from both the US and
the Caribbean, private sector leaders
will participate in both formal square-
table discussions and a variety of so-
cial gatherings.
As in previous years, this Miami Con-
ference provides a unique opportunity
to learn, from those most directly con-
cerned, about the political and eco-
nomic stakes in relations between the
United States and the Caribbean basin
nations. Many of the recent develop-
ments in the area will be explained and
analyzed, as well as some of the lesser
known, but equally vital issues.
Some ten countries will offer special
plenary sessions where top govern-
ment and private sector representa-
tives will discuss critical aspects of
doing business in their respective
countries. These sessions have been
highly acclaimed in the past.

Country Exhibits
This year's program also contains a
new twist. Beginning concurrently with
the conference and continuing through-
out the week will be the Caribbean
basin investment exposition. This com-
bination of country exhibits together
with investment promotion teams from
the region will provide an opportunity
for US businessmen to meet face-to-
face with potential joint venture part-
ners and explore the opportunities of
doing business in the Caribbean and
Central America.

Cf lami
on oIference
e th e

To help bolster the considerable
efforts put forward by the Caribbean
and Central American participants,
C/CAA has, in addition to its own con-
ference promotion efforts, contracted
marketing specialists to attract some
400 US corporate decision-makers to
the exposition. Funding for the market-
ing effort is provided through substan-
tial grants from the US Agency for
International Development and the US
Small Business Administration. Firms
being targeted in this effort include
those offering the greatest potential
and current capability for buying Carib-
bean basin products or investing in sec-
tors regarded as highest priority by the
respective countries.
The focal point of the exposition will
be a spacious walk-through display in
the lobby of the Hyatt Hotel, where par-
ticipating countries will highlight their
special resources and potential. Rather
than a trade show limited to display of
actual products for sale, each country's
exhibit will project a comprehensive
message for new business partners
texts outlining investment potential

and priorities and government
photos of potential tourism sites,
underutilized plant capacity, and
industrial zones;
charts or graphs reflecting rates of
return of past investors, labor
rates, production costs;
descriptions of potential joint ven-
ture partners and leading
Each exhibit will be staffed by a mem-
ber of the country's investment promo-
tion team.
In addition, each country will main-
tain a suite in the hotel where an invest-
ment team will be available to meet with
prospective investors. By means of a
computerized scheduling system in-
stalled by ITT, the floor display will be
linked with the suite to facilitate the
scheduling of new appointments. In-
vestors interested in a number of coun-
tries can also use this system to
ascertain the availability of country
teams at a given hour.
Business Services
Conference organizers have not over-
looked the crucial role of service indus-
tries-transportation, banking, com-
munications and insurance, to name a
few-which can often make or break a
business deal. A "business service in-
formation cluster" will be near the ex-
position, allowing businessmen to get
quick answers regarding their service
Looking Ahead
Past experience has shown that the im-
pact of the conference will go far be-
yond a general familiarization of US
and Caribbean basin participants with
each other's concerns and aspirations.
The new conference format ensures
that investment and trade expansion
opportunities will be addressed con-
cretely and comprehensively, laying the
groundwork for tangible results in fol-
lowing weeks and months. It was, in
part, thanks to the mobilizing effect of
past Miami Conferences that the CBI
proposals finally became a reality. This
year's conference promises to start
putting those proposals to the test.



Continued from page 25

are irrelevant. The interest of employers in
immigrant labor is based on its legal vul-
nerability and, hence, cheapness, rather
than on any qualifications that these work-
ers bring. For this reason, neither education
nor knowledge of English or occupational
training significantly increases immigrant
In 1976, for example, Mexican immi-
grants who had only completed elementary
school had monthly earnings of $677, while
those who had completed high school or
some college earned only $668. Immi-
grants who barely spoke English earned as
much as those who spoke it fairly well.
Those who in Mexico were skilled workers
earned a median of $668 per month, but
those who were white-collar workers earned
only $544.
Secondary sector immigration tends to
homogenize downwards, forcing the bulk
of immigrants into semi-skilled and un-
skilled jobs, regardless of their original qual-
ifications. This effect persists even after they
have managed to legalize their situation. At
the moment of arrival in 1973, 51 percent of
Mexican immigrants reported unskilled and
semi-skilled occupations. In 1976, 73 per-
cent were concentrated in this category,
and in 1979, 68 percent were still there. At
the other extreme, 37 percent of the sample
reported skilled or white-collar occupations
at arrival, but those achieving this status
represented only 21 percent in 1976 and 25
in 1979.
A final illustration of differences between
modes of incorporation is provided by the
minority of our Mexican sample which
managed to gain entry into primary sector
firms. For this group, education, knowledge
of English and occupational training did
yield the expected payoff in terms of US
income. In 1976, for example, the 75 Mex-
ican immigrants which had gained entry
into the primary sector earned a median of
$804 per month, in comparison with $587
for the rest of the sample. The correlation of
education and earnings for those in the pri-
mary sector was .36, indicating that their
earnings did increase with educational
training. For the rest of the sample the cor-
relation was zero.
These results indicate that the fate of im-
migrants and their economic function
depend as much on this mode of incor-
poration into places of destination as on
individual skills and training.

Immigrant Enclaves
Enclaves consist of immigrant groups
which concentrate in a certain location and
organize a variety of enterprises serving
their own ethnic market and/or the general
population. Their basic characteristic is that

a significant proportion of the immigrant
labor force works in enterprises owned by
other immigrants. Some enclaves are suffi-
ciently large and diversified to permit the
organization of life entirely within their lim-
its. Work and leisure activities can take place
without requiring knowledge of the host
country's language or extensive contact
with the broader population. Despite this
isolation, many immigrants are eco-
nomically successful.
The case of the Japanese is well known.
Similar experiences have been reported for
the Chinese. For Koreans on the US West
Coast, one readily notes the proliferation of
immigrant businesses and the mobility op-
portunities that they make available. Simi-
larly, Cuban-owned enterprises in the
Miami area are estimated to have increased
from 919 in 1967 to about 8,000 ten years
later. While most are small scale, some em-
ploy hundreds of workers.
As a mode of incorporation into the re-
ceiving economy, immigrant enclaves also
possess several distinct characteristics:
Their formation is not a product of deliber-
ate economic policies by the government
or the labor needs of employers, but de-
pends on the initiative and resources of the
immigrants themselves. Enclaves are oc-
cupationally heterogeneous. Even if immi-
grants shared the same occupational
backgrounds, development of immigrant
enterprises tends to promote diversification.
Ethnicity represents an important aspect of
economic exchange within enclaves. Com-
mon ethnicity does not symbolize, however,
a vulnerable market position as in the sec-
ondary market. Significant opportunities
for economic advancement exist in the first
generation. Expansion of immigrant enter-
prises means the opening up of new posi-
tions and opportunities.
The counterpart of ethnic bonds of soli-
darity, manipulated by successful en-
trepreneurs, is the principle of ethnic
preference in hiring and of support of other
immigrants in their economic ventures. Re-
ciprocal obligations thus create new oppor-
tunities for immigrants and permit their
utilization of past investments in education
and job training. Enclaves are characterized
by high geographic concentration and,
hence, visibility. Unlike secondary sector
neighborhoods, however, enclaves are not
only residential places, but also economic
entities. A substantial proportion of immi-
grants works within them. Geographic con-
centration facilitates access to labor and
credit, and provides a ready market for
goods and services produced by immigrant
A necessary condition for the emergence
of enclaves is the presence of immigrants
with sufficient capital and entrepreneurial
experience. Capital might be brought from
the home country-as is often the case with
political exiles-or accumulated through
savings. Individuals with the requisite en-

February 28, 29, March 1, 2,1984
Universidad Interamericana de Puerto Rico
Address all inquiries to:
Dr. Rita Molinero
Division de Humanidades
Universidad Interamericana
Apartado 1293
Hato Rey, Puerto Rico 00919
Call for papers on Caribbean literature,
criticism, history, visual arts, film, theater
and music.
Deadline for papers in English or Spanish:
November 4, 1983


November 18-19, 1983
Brickell Point Holiday Inn
Miami, Florida

National Immigration, Refugee &
Citizenship Forum; Catholic Com-
munity Services of Miami; Latin
American and Caribbean Center,

For further information, contact:
Latin American and Caribbean
Center, (305) 554-2894.

Accredited by the American
Translators' Association
8701 S.W. 80th Street
Miami, Florida 33173
(305) 279-8833
(305) 596-1180


February 10-11, 1984
The Miami Herald Building
Miami, Florida

Cosponsored by Florida International
University and Esso Interamerica, Inc.

For further information, contact:
Latin American and Caribbean Center
Florida International University
Miami, Florida 33199
(305) 554-2894


trepreneurial skills might be drawn into the
immigrant flow to escape political persecu-
tion or to profit from opportunities opened
up by a preexisting immigrant colony
Results from a longitudinal study of
Cuban refugees which was conducted par-
allel to the Mexican study mentioned above
illustrate this third mode of incorporation.
The sample consisted of 590 Cuban exiles
interviewed at the moment of arrival in
Miami during 1972-73 and reinterviewed
three and six years later. The follow-up sur-
veys in 1976 and 1979 located and reinter-

viewed 75 and 70 percent of the original
sample, respectively.
As in the Mexican case, statistical tests
show the 1976 and 1979 subsamples to be
unbiased with respect to the original one.
Unlike Mexican immigrants who dispersed
throughout the Midwest and Southwest,
Cuban refugees were concentrated in a sin-
gle place. In 1973, 98 percent indicated that
they intended to stay in Miami; six years
later 98 percent were still there.
More important, however, is the fact that,
in this sample, education, knowledge of
English, and occupational training brought


New Works from the Caribbean (1983)

CARIBBEAN GEORGIAN: The Great and Small Houses of the
West Indies (Pamela Gosner)
A study of the architecture of more than 16 island countries
of the Caribbean. Over 200 drawings, bibliography, and
map. 296 pp. Hardcover: $35, paperback: $15.
KAISO! The Trinidad Calypso (Keith Q. Warner)
A study of Calypso as oral literature, from its early days to
the latest song of Carnival. Maps, appendices, bibliogra-
phy, discography, 30 photographs of famous Calypsonians,
and the complete scores of two famous Calypsos. 153 pp.
Hardcover: $18, paperback: $9.
HOLY VIOLENCE: The Revolutionary Thought of Franz Fanon
(B. Marie Perinbam)
An intellectual history of the evolution of the Martican
political philosophers' complex and controversial theory of
violence and revolution, which developed from his experi-
ences in the Algerian War of Liberation. This work is one of
the fullest studies of Fanon's thought. Appendices, biblio-
graphies, and drawing of Fanon. 176 pp. Hardcover. $22,
paperback: $10.
THUS SPOKE THE UNCLE (Jean Price-Mars, translated by
Magdaline Shannon)
The first English translation of Price-Mars' pioneering
collection of essays, originally published in France in 1928.
Notes, full bibliography. 200 pp. Hardcover: $18, paper-
back, $9.

Please ask for our complete catalogue covering the works on/
about the Caribbean, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa,
and the Asia/Pacific areas.

Three Continents Press, Inc.
1346 Connecticut Avenue, N.W., Suite 224
Washington, D.C. 20036 (Phone: 202/457-0288)

from Cuba did yield a significant economic
payoff. The higher the training and knowl-
edge brought from Cuba, the higher the US
earnings. In 1973, 12 percent of the refu-
gees reported professional or managerial
occupations; by 1979, the figure had in-
creased to 14.3 percent indicating increas-
ing occupational differentiation.
Statistics on self-employment and em-
ploying in immigrant-owned firms in this
sample are most revealing. Self-employ-
ment increased from zero at arrival to 21
percent in 1979. In comparison, only one
Mexican immigrant had acquired his own
business after six years in the country.
Cuban exile enterprises concentrated in re-
tail commerce (28%), services (25%), con-
struction (17%), and the professions (12%).
As might be expected, independent en-
trepreneurship had a positive effect on
earnings. In 1979, monthly earnings
among the self-employed exceeded by
$200, on the average, those of salaried
A substantial number of other re-
spondents in the sample found employ-
ment in Cuban-owned firms. If these are
added to the self-employed, about 33 per-
cent of these immigrants were part of the
Cuban economic enclave in 1976. By
1979, the figure had increased to almost
half of the sample, 49 percent. Contrary to
generalized expectations, the condition of
immigrants working in the enclave firms is
not inferior to that of those employed on the
outside. In 1979, average monthly earnings
of Cuban refugees in the enclave was
$1,103 as compared with $1,029 for those
working elsewhere.
Not all respondents in our sample were
employed in enclave firms, however. A sub-
stantial number found jobs in enterprises
which are typical of the secondary sector. A
comparison between these two groups of-
fers a final illustration of the effect of differ-
ent modes of incorporation. Education at
arrival had a very strong positive effect on
the occupational status of Cuban refugees
both in 1976 and in 1979. This effect held
even after controlling for a number of other
relevant variables. However, education had
no effect on occupation among those rele-
gated to the secondary labor market either
in 1976 or in 1979.
Present occupation and information had
very strong effects on earnings among
Cubans in the enclave; in the secondary
sector, neither these variables nor any other
increased earnings. In 1979, occupation
significantly affected earnings in both sec-
tors. However, aspirations at arrival had a
significant effect on earnings among those
in the enclave, but not in the secondary
sector. The main conclusion which these
results illustrate is that individual charac-
teristics brought by immigrants to the
United States do not suffice to explain their
process of economic and social adaptation.



Mexicans and Cubans, despite similar cul-
tural origins and even similar occupational
and educational backgrounds, follow differ-
ent adaptation paths and find themselves,
at the end of several years, in different eco-
nomic and social situations. Within each
group, the economic fate of individual im-
migrants depends, to a large extent, on the
segment of the labor market into which they
become incorporated. Immigrants of iden-
tical educational and occupational back-
grounds do very differently in the United
States, depending on whether their labor is
channelled toward the primary or the sec-
ondary sector, or whether they join a preex-
isting enclave economy.

Latin Americanization?
The present immigration wave, from Latin
America and elsewhere, must be seen in the
historical context provided by earlier peri-
ods of mass immigration. From this van-
tage point, the numerical significance of the
present inflow acquires a new meaning, and
notions like the "Latin Americanization of
the United States" appear highly exagger-
ated. The rise of nativist movements at
present repeats a phenomenon observed
many times in the past, and it is likely to
produce the same dismal consequences.
The fate of immigrants and their process
of adaptation to American society are nei-
ther homogenous nor do they depend ex-
clusively on individual traits brought from
the home country. Three major modes of
incorporation exist at present, based on ac-
cess to different segments of the American
labor market. None of them corresponds to
the ideal typical sequence outlined by the
conventional assimilation perspective. Sec-
ondary sector immigration comes closest
to the first steps of the theoretical assimila-
tion sequence, but the illegal status of most
immigrants in this situation restricts their
possibilities for gradual and successful
Immigrants incorporated into the pri-
mary labor market or into a preexisting eco-
nomic enclave are likely to face fewer social
and economic barriers during the first gen-
eration; successive ones are likely to adapt
successfully, albeit in different forms. The
most serious problem associated with con-
temporary immigration is that of undocu-
mented immigrants coming to meet the
demand for cheap labor in the secondary
sector of the economy. It is a problem which
involves the immigrants themselves, their
children, and the native workers with which
they compete in this segment of the econ-
omy. The present policy of legally proscrib-
ing but de facto accepting large numbers
of manual immigrant workers is likely to
have severe long-term consequences in
terms of the welfare of American workers,
the chances for successful adaptation of
these immigrants and their children, and
the social and political stability of the re-
gions where they settle.

The United States must face this chal-
lenge by rejecting a policy based on the
narrow economic interests of a particular
class and by bringing the letter of the law
into line with its application. If there is a real
demand for more manual labor, it should
be met with a legal immigration program so
that the need of immigrants for work is not
used as a weapon against the most needy
and most defenseless American workers.
Illegals and their families which have settled
permanently in the country must be
brought out of their pariah status and into
the mainstream so that they and their chil-

dren have at least the same opportunities
for adaptation as those given to earlier Eu-
ropean immigrants. The injustice perpe-
trated on native workers and on the
immigrants themselves, allowed into the
country and then confined to a perma-
nently disadvantaged position, can lead to
severe social and political unrest Ameri-
cans must decide whether the continuing
profitability of certain sectors of the econ-
omy is worth the price of breaching the rule
of law and abandoning the goals of a mini-
mum living wage and protection of indi-
vidual rights for everyone in the country. E




Usted tendra en sus manos una revista que estudia
problems y corrientes de pensamiento de la actualidad
puertorriqueia, caribeia, continental e international.

Donald Castillo Rivas
Las empresas transnacionales y la crisis
Aline Frambes-Buxeda de Alzerreca
El desencuentro de la economic mundial,
recesi6n y escamoteo en el Caribe y Puerto
Juana M. Rodrlguez
Efecto de la Promesa y del refuerzo positive
continue en una tarea de logros.
Kelvin Antonio Santiago
La concentraci6n y la centralizaci6n de la
propiedad en Puerto Rico (1898-1929)
Albert Meyers
Estrategia de reproducci6n y formas de
cooperaci6n en la region Caribe
Dieter Boris
Acerca de algunos problems te6ricos y
metodol6gicos en el analisis del movimiento
obrero en America Latiaa (tesis)
Lester I. Nurse
La Instrucci6n Peblica en Puerto Rico: 1900-
1930; 1960-1980. Dos Periodos de Instruc-
ci6n, Americanizaci6n y Colonizaci6n.
Nilsa M. Burgos
Analisis hist6rico preliminary sobre la mujer
y el trabajo en Puerto Rico: 1899-1975.

Paulo Freire
Vivencias educativas en paises en desarrollo
Carmelo Rosario Natal -
Francisco Scarano Fiol
Bibliografia Hist6rica Puertorriqueia de la
decada de los setenta (1970-1979)
Sylvia Enid Arocho Velazquez
La mujer y el acceso al poder en Puerto Rico
Irene Sumaza
The effects of an assertiveness training
Program for Puerto Rican College Woman
planning to emigrate to the United States.
Rene Zavaleta Mercado
Notas sobre la cuestibn national en America
Carlos Vilas
Las contradicciones de la transici6n: cla-
ses, naci6n y estado en Nicaragua
Agustin Cueva
Cultura, Clase y Naci6n
Antonio Martorell
Arte colonial en Puerto Rico ayer y hoy
San Juan, Ayer y Hoy
Luisa Valenzuela
Cr6nicas de Pueblorrojo

Promoci6n Especial
Suscrlpciones Ejemplares 5 nums. (volumenes
(2 nums. al ano) Sueltos anteriores 1978/79/80)
Puerto Rico ...................... US S15 US $ 8 US $40
EE.UU., el Caribe y Centro America. US $22 US$12 US $40
Sur America y Europa............. US $25 US $13 US $55
Para informaci6n:
Director' Revista Homines
Depto. de Ciencias Sociales
Universidad Interamericana de Puerto Rico
Apartado 1293, Hato Rey, Puerto Rico 00936


Recent Books

An informative listing of books about the Caribbean,
Latin America, and their emigrant groups

By Marian Goslinga

Anthropology and Sociology

AMAZONIANS. Raymond B. Hames,
William T Vickers, eds. Academic Press,
1983. 536 p. $49.00.

E. Astiz, M. M. Rospide. Universidad de
Buenos Aires, 1982. 2 vols.

TRINIDAD. Ivar Oxaal. Schenkman
(Cambridge, Mass.), 1982. 317 p. $17.95;
$9.95 paper.

Layng. University Press of America, 1983.
177 p. $20.75; $9.75 paper. About the
residents of the Carib Reserve on

Moncada. Tecnos (Madrid, Spain), 1982.
221 p.

,CUBA SOCIALIST? Rene Dumont Carmen
Bueno Sanchez, trans. Narcea (Madrid,
Spain), 1982. 272 p. 395 pts. Translation of
Cuba, est-il socialist?

Escobedo, ed. Teachers College, Columbia
University, 1983. $19.95.

AMERICAN CHILD. Eugene E. Garcia.
University of New Mexico Press, 1983. 224
p. $24.95; $14.95 paper.

COLONIAL CHILE, 1535-1800. Della M.
Flusche, Eugene H. Korth. Blaine Ethridge-
Books, 1983. 112 p. $16.50.

LATER. Carl Kendall, John Hawkins, Laurel
Bossen. University of New Mexico Press,
1983. 368 p. $27.50. About Central
America and Mexico.

Marta Weigle, Claudia Larcombe, Samuel
Larcombe, eds. University of New Mexico
Press, 1983. 413 p. $35.00; $20.00 paper.

Rutgers University Press, 1983. 278 p.
$24.00; $12.00 paper.

Marion Oettinger, Jr., Fernando Horcasitas.
American Philosophical Society, 1982. 71 p.

YESTERYEAR. Margaret Beeson, Marjorie
Adams, Rosalie King. Blaine-Ethridge
Books, 1983. 143 p. $7.95. Collection of
first-person sketches, in English and
Spanish, made during the Mexican

George List. Indiana University Press, 1983.
640 p. $35.00.

ed. Haworth Press (New York, N.Y), 1983.
128 p. $19.95.

1898-1980. Pedro A. Vales, Astrid A. Ortiz,
Noel E. Mattei. Centro de Investigaciones
Sociales, Universidad de Puerto Rico, 1982.
213 p. $8.00.

1930-1940. Ricardo Perez Montfort. Centro
de Investigaciones y Estudios Superiores en
Antropologia Social (Mexico), 1982. 178 p.

Peter Simon. R & B (Rogner & Bernhard),
1982. 192 p. $14.95.

AMAZONS. Florence Mary Benett
Anderson. Caratzas Publishing Co. (New
Rochelle, N.Y), 1983. 79 p. $17.50. Reprint
of the 1912 ed.

SOCIETY 1787-1834. Mary Turner.
University of Illinois Press, 1982. 223 p.

SO SPOKE THE UNCLE. Jean Price-Mars.
Three Continents Press, 1983. 240 p.
$16.00; $7.00 paper. Treatise on the folklore
of Haiti, originally published under title:
Ainsi parla l'oncle.

B, R. Burg. New York University Press, 1983.
215 p. $20.00.

PEASANT WOMEN. Audrey Bronstein.
South End Press, 1983. 268 p. $7.50.

BOLIVIA. Ren6 Bascope Aspiazu. Ediciones
"Aqui" (La Paz, Bolivia), 1982. 122 p.

MAINLAND. David S. North. Center for
Labor and Migration Studies (Washington,
D.C.), 1983. $7.00.


Manuel de Vega. Ediciones Universal
(Miami, Fla.), 1983. 261 p. $12.00.

AUTOBIOGRAFIA. Ruben Dario. Ediciones
Distribuidora Cultural (Managua,
Nicaragua), 1983. 137 p.


Penguin, 1983. 300 p. $5.95.

NATION. John M. Kirk. University Presses of
Florida. 1983. 201 p. $17.95.

Joaquin Cardenas Noriega. Oceano
(Mexico), 1982. 287 p.

Ida Rodriguez Prampolini. Universidad
Nacional Aut6noma de Mexico, 1982.
258 p.

ELITE. Elke de Stockhausen. Universidad
Cat6lica del Tachira (San Crist6bal,
Venezuela), 1982. 89 p.

Dubroca. Juan L6pez Cancelada, ed.
Porrua (Mexico), 1983. 106 p. Reprint of
the 1806 ed.

SCHOLAR; A TRIBUTE. Edward A. Alpers,
Pierre-Michel Fontaine, eds. Center for Afro-
American Studies, University of California
(Los Angeles), 1983. 187 p. $18.95; $10.95
paper. Biography of the Guyana historian.

Lorde. Persephone Press (Watertown,
Mass.), 1982. 256 p. $7.95. Story of a West
Indian girl of Grenadian parentage
searching for her identity.

Description and Travel

AMAZON. Brian Kelly, Mark London. Harcourt
Brace Jovanovich, 1983. $15.95.

T Hornaday. University of Arizona Press,
1983. 460 p. $10.95. Reprint of a guide to
Mexico first published in 1909.

THE WEST INDIES. Thomas Jefferys. AMS
Press, 1983. $19.50. Reprint of the 1762

Dario Espina P&rez. Editorial Tecnol6gica
de Costa Rica, 1983.

ISLANDS. Donovan S. Correll, Helen B.
Correll. J. Cramer (Vaduz, Germany), 1982.
1692 p.


Cristina Salazar. Ediciones Tercer Mundo
(Bogota, Colombia), 1982. 158 p.

COCADOLARES. Gregorio Selser. Mex-Sur
Editorial (Mexico), 1982. 307 p.

Jose Blanes, Gonzalo Flores C. Centro de
Estudios de la Realidad Econ6mica y
Social (La Paz, Bolivia), 1982. 358 p. About

FUTURO. Insituto Brasileiro de Analises
Socials e Econ6micas. Achiamb (Rio de
Janeiro, Brazil), 1983. 122 p.

Jose Silvestre Mendez Morales. Ediciones
Oceano (Mexico), 1983. 188 p.

VENEZUELAN ANDES. William Roseberry.
University of Texas Press, 1983. 256 p.

1950-1980. Santiago Perry. El Ancora
(Bogota, Colombia), 1983. 202 p. $18.00.

Castro. Oficina de Publicaciones del
Consejo de Estado (Havana, Cuba), 1983.
238 p.
Payne, Paul K. Sutton, eds. Manchester
University Press (Dover, New Hampshire),
1983. $35.00.

1930-1982. Luiz Carlos Bresser Pereira.
Marcia Van Dyke and Nancy Voigt, trans.
Westview Press, 1983. 275 p. $25.00.
Translation of Desenvolvimento e crise no

DeLisle Worrell, ed. Central Bank of
Barbados, 1982. 199 p. $11.50.

Armella, Rudiger Dombusch. University of
Chicago Press, 1983. 304 p. $36.00.

EN COSTA RICA, 1978-1982. Eugenio
Rivera Urrutia. Departamento Ecumenico
de Investigaciones (San Josh, Costa Rica),
1982. 179 p.

UNITED STATES. Sidney Weintraub.
Brookings Institution, 1983. 250 p. $26.95;
$9.95 paper.

W Mashek, Stephen G. Vetter. Inter-
American Foundation, 1983. 73 p.

Alejandro Foxley. University of California
Press, 1983. $22.50.

Anthony P Andrews. University of Arizona
Press, 1983. $15.95.

Olmedo. Editorial Grijalbo (Mexico), 1983.
213 p.

Gordon and Breach (New York), 1982. 156
p. $37.75.

N. Blackman. Blackman (Barbados), 1982.
174 p. $10.75. Speeches by the Govemor
of the Central Bank of Barbados on
economic policy.

Kowalewski. Praeger, 1982. 235 p. $26.95.

Mialler-Plantenberg. Vervuert (Frankfurt,
Germany), 1983. DM 16,80. About the
labor movement in Colombia.

Archaeology and History

HISPANOAMERICA. Francisco Rico P6rez.
Fundaci6n Ramos de Castro para el
Estudio y Promoci6n del Hombre (Zamora,
Spain), 1982. 303 p.

W. Boyer. Carolina Academic Press
(Durham, N.C.), 1983. 418 p. $27.75;
$13.75 paper.

Markman. American Philosophical Society,
1983. 236 p. $35.00.

AZTEC ART Esther Pastorzy. Abrams, 1983.


Contreras. Ann E. Bennington, trans. Piedra
Santa (Guatemala), 1982. 140 p. 325

DE LOS JESUITAS. Julian N. Guerrero C.,
Lola Soriano de Guerrero. Ediciones
Nicarao (Managua, Nicaragua), 1982.
185 p.

1585. Silvio Zavala. El Colegio de Mexico,
1982. 216 p.

PANAMENA. Justo Arosemena. Biblioteca
Ayacucho (Caracas, Venezuela), 1982. 550
p. 1,500 bs.

Rama. Fondo de Cultura Econ6mica
(Mexico), 1982. 350 p.

REGION. Victor Westphall, University of
New Mexico Press, 1983. 368 p. $24.95.

EN LA HISTORIA. Centro de Investigaci6n
Cientifica Jorge L Tamayo. El Centro
(Mexico), 1982. 2 vols. (1353 p.)

Felipe Ram6n y Rivera. Monte Avila
Editores (Caracas, Venezuela), 1982. 135 p.
About Venezuela.

OCHO ANOS DE LUCHA. Gerardo Machado y
Morales. Ediciones Hist6ricas Cubanas
(Miami, Fla.), 1982. 224 p. $12.95. By the
former Cuban president.

Eladio Prado. Editorial Costa Rica, 1983.
Reprint of the 1925 ed.

HISTORY. Arturo Morales Carri6n, ed.
Norton, 1983. 384 p.

Greene Robertson. Princeton University
Press, 1983. $90.00. The first of five
volumes to provide a complete
photographic record of the Maya center.

LA TRAMPA. Manuel Pefiabaz. Zoom (Miami,
Fla.), 1983. 461 p. $15.00. A Cuban exile
writes about the 1961 invasion.

Politics and Government

YANKI. Carlos Maria Ydigoras. Argos
Vergara (Barcelona, Spain), 1982. 401 p.
80 pts.

Armando Pimienta Puentes. Ediciones
Universal (Miami, Fla.), 1983. 214 p. $9.00.
About the dangers of Communism in our

Emilio Maza. Alfa y Omega (Guatemala),
1983. 222 p.

ESSAYS. Francis Alexis, RK. Menon, Dorcas
White, eds. Faculty of Law, University of the
West Indies (Cave Hill, Barbados), 1982.
303 p. $25.50.

Ambursley, Robin Cohen, eds. Heinemann
(London), 1983. 276 p. 6.95.

Hugo Gambini, ed. Redacci6n (Buenos
Aires, Argentina, 1983. 2 vols.

Pamela S. Falk. Lexington Books, 1983.

Jai Narine Singh. Singh (Guyana), 1982.
170 p. $9.95.

Altagracia Ortiz. Fairleigh Dickinson
University Press, 1983. 258 p. $27.50.

Robert Armstrong, Janet Shenk. South End
Press, 1982. 283 p. $7.50.

Alain Rouqui6. Editions Du Seuil (Paris,
France), 1982. 475 p.

EN EL SIGLO XVI. Guillermo Porras
Mufioz. Universidad Nacional Aut6noma de
Mexico, 1982. 515 p.

REVOLUCAO DE 64. Luis Carlos Lisboa,
Beatriz Marinho, eds. Editora Rio (Rio de
Janeiro, Brazil), 1982. 254 p.

LaFeber. Norton, 1983. $18.95.

EN MASAYA. Institute de Estudio del
Sandinismo. Editorial Nueva Nicaragua
(Managua, Nicaragua), 1982, 214 p.

Martinez Rivas. Editorial Nueva Nicaragua
(Managua, Nicaragua), 1982, 172 p.

REAL. Woodrow W Borah. University of
California Press, 1983. 496 p. $45.00.
Farrokh Jhabvala, ed. University Presses of
Florida, 1983. 130 p. $11.95.

NICARAGUA. Teofilo Cabestrero. Orbis
Books, 1983. 160 p. $6.95.

DEVELOPMENT Paget Henry, Carl Stone,
eds. Institute for the Study of Human
Issues, 1983. 348 p.

Estudio del Sandinismo. Editorial Nueva
Nicaragua (Managua, Nicaragua), 1982.
363 p.

Cavaioli, Salvatore J. LaGumina. Krieger
Pub. Co. (Malabar, Fla.), 1983. 250 p.
$9.50. Analysis of ethnic groups and
current immigration policy in the U.S.

Roger Burbach, Patricia Flynn. Monthly
Review Press, 1983. $25.00; $10.00.

Estudio del Sandinismo. Editorial Nueva
Nicaragua (Managua, Nicaragua), 1982.
270 p.

MEXICO Y CHINA, 1898-1948. Felipe
Pardinas. Secretaria de Relaciones
Exteriores (Mexico), 1982. 867 p.

de Castro Brandao. Secretaria de
Relaciones Exteriores (M6xico), 1982.
269 p.

Lawrence Freedman. Abt Books
(Cambridge, Mass.), 1983. 256 p. $25.00.

CARIBBEAN. Jenny Pearce. South End
Press, 1982. 295 p. $7.50.


M. Kritz, ed. Lexington Books, 1983. 415 p.

SOCIAL ASPECTS. Clark W. Reynolds,
Carlos Tello, eds. Stanford University Press,
1983. 392 p. $25.00.

STRUGGLE, 1893-1920. Douglas W.
Richmond. University of Nebraska Press,
1983. 544 p. $26.95.

Language and Literature

J. Figueroa, ed. Heinemann Educational
Books, 1982. 297 p.

CHECKPOINT ORINOCO. Alice Ekert-Rotholz.
Catherine Hutter, trans. Fromm
International, 1983. $15.95. Novel of
international intrigue that sweeps from
Hitler's Germany to the banks of the
Orinoco River.

IDEOLOGY Keith Ellis. University of
Toronto Press, 1983. 251 p. $27.50.

ESCAPE! Aron Spilken. New American Library,
1983. $14.95. Story about the ordeal of 40
illegal Salvadorean refugees in the Arizona

NEW WORLD. James P Gilroy, ed. Dept of
Foreign Languages and Literatures,
University of Denver, 1982. 147 p.

ORAL DE WARU CHIRI. George L. Urioste,
ed. Syracuse University, 1983. 2 vols.
$16.00. Quechua/Spanish ed. of the
Huarochiri manuscript

POEMS. Pamela Mordecai, Mervyn Morris,
eds. Heinemann Educational Books
(Kingston, Jamaica), 1982. 110 p. $5.00.

JOSE REVUELTAS. Sam L. Slick. G.K. Hall,
1983. 240 p. $15.95.

Herbert H. Hoffman. Scarecrow Press, 1983.
135 p. $13.50.

UNA REALIDAD. Josh Miguel Oviedo. Seix
Barral (Barcelona, Spain), 1982. 462 p.
950 pts.

NOT BY THE SWORD. Nash Candelaria.
Bilingual Press (Ypsilanti, Mich.), 1982. 235
p. $8.95. Historical novel about a 19th
century Mexican family.

Sandra Pouchet Paquet. Heinemann
Educational Books, 1983. 130 p. $10.00.
Study of the Barbadean author.

OTRA VEZ EL MAR. Reinaldo Arenas. Argos
Vergara (Barcelona, Spain), 1982. 420 p.
$18.00. Novel about Cuba.

NOVEL Oscar Hijuelos. Persea Books
(New York), 1983. 235 p. $12.95.

ANTHOLOGY 1918-1979. Steven F White,
ed. Unicom Press (Greensboro, N.C.), 1982.
$20.00; $10.00 paper.

RETO EN EL PARAISO. Alejandro Morales.
Bilingual Press (Ypsilanti, Mich.), 1983. 381
p. Novel by a Chicano author.

STRUCTURE. Leon-Francois Hoffman.
Sherbrooke (Quebec, Canada), 1982.
329 p.

SELECTED POEMS. Louise Bennett. Mervyn
Morris, ed. Sangster's Book Store
(Kingston, Jamaica), 1982. 175 p. $8.75.
By a Jamaican poet.

Portillo Trambley. Bilingual Press (Ypsilanti,
Mich.), 1983. 195 p. By a Chicana

Juan Arcocha. Argos Vergara (Madrid,
Spain), 1982. 203 p. $15.00. Novel about

Omotoso. New Beacon (London, Eng.),
1982. 173 p. $19.00; $9.00 paper.

Editores (Mexico), 1982. 305 p.

WOMEN. H. Ernest Lewald, ed. Three
Continents Press, 1983. $16.00; $8.00

WILSON HARRIS. Hena Maes-Jelinek. Twayne
Publishers, 1982. 191 p. $17.95. Literary
criticism of the work of the Caribbean

Greer Johnson. Greenwood Press, 1983.
248 p. $29.95.


de Moraes. Rev. and enlarged ed. UCLA
Latin American Center Publications (Los
Angeles, Calif.), 1983. 2 vols. (1120 p.)

83. Luis A. G6mez Dominguez. Hialeah
Dade Development Inc. (Miami, Fla.), 1983.
2 vols. $60.00. Covers economic relations
between Latin America and Dade County,

Reyes, Isabel Mufioz Reyes Taborga.
Editorial Juventud (La Paz, Bolivia), 1982.
389 p.

Eduardo Arellano. Biblioteca Nacional
Ruben Dario, Ministerio de Cultura
(Managua, Nicaragua), 1982. 440 p.

BIOGRAFICO. Horacio Jorge Becco, ed.
Editorial "El Ateneo" (Caracas, Venezuela),

A. Holm, Allison W. Schilling. Lexik House
(Cold Spring, N.Y), 1982. 228 p. $42.00.

Sara de Mundo Lo. Albatross (Urbana, 111.),
1983. 65 p. $9.00.

HAITI. Frances Chambers, ed. Clio Press, 1983.
177 p. $27.00. A volume in their World
Bibliographical Series.

SOUTHWEST F Arturo Rosales, David W
Foster. Center for Latin American Studies,
Arizona State University, 1983.

Covington. Seminar on the Acquisition of
Latin American Library Materials, SALALM,
1983. 458 p.

American Development Bank. G.K. Hall,
1983. 4 vols. $595.00. Index to the Bank's
serial holdings.

SIGLOS XIX Y XX. Maria de la Luz Parcero.
Universidad Nacional Aut6noma de Mexico,
1982. 347 p.

Marian Goslinga is the Latin American and
Caribbean Librarian at Florida International


SBarry B. Levine shatters

the myth of the victimized




A Picaresque Tale
of Emigration and Return

Using the first-person technique pioneered by Oscar Lewis,
noted sociologist Barry B. Levine records and analyzes the life
story of a Puerto Rican emigrant, "one of the most colorful
characters to make an appearance in sociological literature...
Barry Levine has that increasingly rare gift, the sociological ear.
In this book, we have the result of his listening."-Peter Berger.
"A labor of love for Puerto Rico and its plight, and a fine piece
of scholarship."-Ed Vega, Nuestro "Levine has rescued Third
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demonstrate the circumstances of the Puerto Rican in New York
than this one."-Miguel Barnet, Caribbean Review "Highly
recommended"-Joanna Walsh, Library Journal
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Latin America in Books "Estupendo..."-Carlos Alberto
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the Puerto Rican diaspora..."-Gerald Guinness, Americas
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"Opens the reader's eyes to the problems and challenges, the
pain and frustration of life as a Puerto Rican in the big
metropolis."-Joseph P. Fitzpatrick, S.J., Contemporary
Sociology "A good read...but above and beyond its literary
attributes, it stands on its own as a well-conceived, thoroughly
researched, and solid study...A significant contribution to the
scientific analysis of the causes and consequences of Puerto
Rican emigration and return."-Angel Calder6n Cruz,
Caribbean Studies "A stupendous book that only a
sociologist/anthropologist willing and unafraid to let a little
humanism and common sense creep into his study could write.
A very human document about a very human being."-Gary
Brana-Shute, Bijdragen tot de Taal-, Land- en Volkenkunde.

$9.95 direct from Waterfront Press

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Please write for our full catalogue of books in the area of Puerto Rican studies.


Latin American and Caribbean Center
Occasional Paper Series
OPS 1 de Goes Monteiro, Pedro Aurelio. "The Brazilian
Army in 1925: A Contemporary Opinion."
OPS 2 Haber, Alicia. "Vernacular Culture in Uruguayan Art:
An Analysis of the Work of Pedro Figary, Carlos
Gonzalez and Luis Solari."
OPS 3 Drekonja Kornat, Gerhard. "Colombia: En busqueda
de una political exterior."
OPS 4 Geggus, David. "Slave Resistance Studies and the
Saint Domingue Slave Revolt: Some Preliminary
OPS 5 Santamaria, Daniel. "Iglesia y economic campesina
en el Alto Peru, siglo XVIII."
OPS 6 P6rez-L6pez, Jorge F. "Central America's External
Debt in the 1970s and Prospects for the 1980s."

$4.00 each

Latin American and Caribbean Center
Florida International University
Tamiami Trail, Miami, FL 33199
(305) 554-2894

Adaptive Responses
of Native Amazonians
Edited by
This volume comprises an introductory re-
view followed by fourteen substantive stud-
ies of the environmental adaptations and
human ecology of the Indians of Amazonia.
In all, seventeen indigenous societies in six
modern nations are discussed in detail.
Each chapter is problem oriented and uses
original quantitative data to test specific
hypotheses concerning human adaptations
to a Neotropical ecosystem. The chapters
focus on settlement patterns, nutrition,
and the subsistence strategies of hunting,
fishing, foraging, and cultivation. The au-
thors represent a broad range of theoreti-
cal approaches to ecological anthropology:
ethnoecology, cultural ecology, cultural
materialism, and evolutionary ecology.
April/May 1983, 536 pp., $49.00
ISBN: 0-212-21250-2
Send payment with order and save postage and handling. Prices are in U.S.
dollars and are subject to change without notice.
A Subsidiary of Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Publishers
New York London Toronto Sydney San Francisco
312044 111 FIFTH AVENUE, NEW YORK, N.Y. 10003

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