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Title: Caribbean Review
Physical Description: Serial
Language: English
Creator: Latin American and Caribbean Center, Florida International University
Publisher: Latin American and Caribbean Center, Florida International University
Place of Publication: Miami, FL
Publication Date: 1985
Copyright Date: 1980
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Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Table of Contents
        Page 1
    Front Matter
        Page 2
    Main
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
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    Back Matter
        Page 56
    Back Cover
        Back Cover 1
        Back Cover 2
Full Text



SCAIBBCAN

YIEW IVol. XIV, No. 3
Srjfv ie VThree Dollars


"What Is False Is Really True"; Caribbean Creativity; Science and Energy
Dependence; An Absence of Ruins;
Puerto Rico's Status Logjam; Can Aruba Make It?


0C

-9 0





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Cover
Le Roi des Indes by the late Martiniquan
artist Medard Aribot (scrap wood, camem-
bert boxes, home-made paints, cigarette
pack lining, coconut husk and other as-
sorted materials; height 39 cms). The
sculpture is in a private collection.


In this issue


3
Crossing Swords
The Retreat from Integration
By Compton Bourne

5
Responses and Replies
Boyer, Jones-Hendrickson,
Will and Segal

6
Definition and Development
The Need for Caribbean Creativity
By Rex Nettleford

11
Caribbean Science and
Technology
Do They Exist?
By Wallace C. Koehler and
Aaron Segal


16
Caribbean Energy
Dependence
A 15-Year Prognosis
By Juan A. Bonnet, Jr. and
Angel Calder6n-Cruz


,-y-ji ., "'. .r o -**-*"'.-,o
,. .
., -;- .-; ,, ,. K -" e. -S' .
-*
-t


- 2 ..,,r,".- -


18
Future Aruba
Can It Make It Alone?
By George J. Cvejanovich

21
Endangering Friendships
By Scott B. MacDonald
Clouds Over Aruba
By Bernard Diederich

22
Paradise Lost?
Rediscovering Tradition in Aruba
By Sam Cole

24
An Absence of Ruins?
Seeking Caribbean Historical
Consciousness
By Richard Price

30
Breaking the Puerto Rico
Logjam
Ask the Courts to Clarify Status
By Maurice Wolf

34
Stuck on Status
New Ideas About an Old Problem
A Review Essay by James L. Dietz


38
Pedro Pietri
What Is False Is Really True
A Review Essay by
Barry Wallenstein


48
First Impressions

52
Recent Books










PCA EBBEAN

REVIEW


The New

Cuban Presence

in the

Caribbean

edited by Barry B. Levine

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

"An extremely valuable and most welcome
addition to the literature on Cuba's Interna-
tional relations.... The chapters are well
written, carefully documented and offer vital
insights into the International rivalries which
have transformed the Caribbean Basin Into
an arena of International conflict."
-Richard Millett,
The Air War College

"Indispensable for those wishing to gain In-
sight into the basin's complex political
forces and dynamics." -Edward Gonzalez,
Caribbean Review

"A very thorough piece of work, highly Infor-
mative and analytical." -Frank Virden,
The Times of the Americas


Also of interest

Latin America, Its Problems and
Its Promise
A Multidisciplinary Introduction
edited by Jan Knippers Black
September 1984 ca. 450 pages
$30 (cloth) $14.50 (paper)

Revolution and Counterrevolution in
Central America and the Caribbean
edited by Donald E. Schulz and
Douglas H. Graham
July 1984 ca. 425 pages
$35 (cloth) $14.95 (paper)

For examination copies, write to M. Gilbert, Dept. CMG-5,
Westview Press, giving course title, enrollment, and present
text. Please include $3.50 per book for processing and
postage.
Write for our complete catalog.

S_ Westview Press
5500 Central Avenue Boulder, Colorado 80301


SUMMER 1985
Editor
Barry B. Levine
Associate Editors
Anthony R Maingot
Mark B. Rosenberg
Managing Editor
June S. Belkin
Editorial Assistant
Gilbert L. Socas
Book Review Editor
Forrest D. Colburn
Bibliographer
Marian Goslinga
Cartographer
Linda M. Marston
Contributing Editors
Henry S. Gill
Eneid Routte G6mez
Aaron L. Segal
Andres Serbin
Olga J. Wagenheim


Vol. XIV, No. 3



Art Director
Danine L. Carey
Design Consultant
Juan C. Urquiola
Contributing Artists
Terry Cwikla
Velinka Patkovic
Circulation Manager
Maria J. Gonzblez
Distribution Manager
Everardo A. Rodriguez
Marketing Manager
Francisco Franquiz
Project Director
Anna M. Alejo
Project Manager
Marlene Saxton


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
Edelbertp 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 @ 1984 by Caribbean Review, Inc. The reproduction of
any artwork, editorial or other material is expressly prohibited withoutwritten 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 stated fee
of $1.00 per copy is paid directly to CCC, 21 Congress Street, Salem, MA 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; Current Contents of Periodicals on Latin America; Development and Welfare
Index; Hispanic American Periodicals Index; Historical Abstracts; international Bibliogra-
phy of Book Reviews; International Bibliography of Periodical Literature; International
Development Abstracts; International Serials Database (Bowker); New Periodicals Index;
Political Science Abstracts; PAIS BULLETIN; United States Political Science Documents;
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 Vol.
XI, 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
AO-Air Mail. Invoicing Charge: $3.00. Subscription agencies, please take 15%. Back
Issues: Back numbers still in print are purchasable at $5.00 each. A list of those still
available appears elsewhere in this issue. Microfilm and microfiche copies of Caribbean
Review are available from University Microfilms; A Xerox Company; 300 North Zeeb
Road; Ann Arbor, Michigan 48106.
Production: Typography by American Graphics Corporation, 959 NE 45th Street, Fort
Lauderdale, Florida 33334. Printing by Swanson Printing Inc., 2134 NW Miami Court,
Miami, Florida 33127.
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.


2/CAI?BBEAN F VIEW


Crs


I









Crossing Swords



The Retreat from Integration

By Compton Bourne


The Commonwealth Caribbean integration
movement is at a critical juncture. Strong
external and local forces are causing its
members to adopt policies contrary to the
dominant tendencies of the last decade.
There is widespread pessimism about the
viability and value of economic integration.
One country wants to reexamine the Treaty
of Chaguaramas which established the Ca-
ribbean Community. Political discord pre-
vails. Increasingly, countries seem to
proceed separately.
The clearest indication of the retreat from
community integration is the rise in eco-
nomic protectionism. The larger Caribbean
Community countries now vigorously im-
plement nontariff barriers against the prod-
ucts of regional partners. Another, though
less publicized, indication is the tightening
of work permit and visa requirements which
restrict labor mobility. In the field of trans-
port, the subregion has drifted farther away
from agreement on a regional air carrier. As
a last example, national concerns and ap-
proachesthreaten to assume ascendancy in
government policy towards the University
of the West Indies, which has existed as a
truly regional and integrative institution
since the mid-1940s.
Some of these instances of withdrawal
are the outcome of current economic diffi-
culties. Depletion of foreign exchange re-
serves and massive economic recession in
Guyana and Jamaica have considerably re-
duced regional commodity demand. Policy
weaknesses with respect to sectoral bal-
ance and domestic inflation have contrib-
uted to the inability of the Trinidad and
Tobago manufacturing sector to compete
in regional and national markets. The global
economic recession and international
primary commodity market depression
have adversely affected employment and
incomes throughout the Caribbean
Community.
Nonetheless, the validity of these short-
term explanations should not be allowed to
obscure much more fundamental causes.
One major reason for the retreat is the reluc-
tance of Caricom member countries to take
the decisive actions required to deepen the
integration movement. Agreement and fol-
low-up action has stopped at the easy stage
of import policy in relation to third-party


countries and the operation of a regional
development bank. The basic policy issues
which still await decision and implemen-
tation are the geographical location and
specialization of production, especially
manufacturing, capital mobility and labor
mobility. It is inevitable that the inte-
gration movementwould dead-end unless a
regional approach prevailed in these
critical areas.
So far, manufacturing production facili-
ties have been established with little regard
to regional supply and demand capacities.
The consequences have been duplication
and excess capacity, the inability to achieve
economies of scale, and high-cost produc-
tion which is uncompetitive internationally.
Thus when demand contracts, profitability
is severely depressed. The spectre of bank-
ruptcy looms large for many manufacturing
enterprises.
Community integration advanced the
most in the field of foreign policy. Nonethe-
less, even here there have been serious set-
backs. Ideological conflicts and economic
opportunism have generated splintered re-
sponses to major global economic and po-
litical issues of significance to this region. It
is now impossible to perceive a Caribbean
Community position on the international
trade and payments system or on hemi-
spheric rivalry and conflict. Instead, one has
a range of positions intermediate between
the polarities of Seagas Jamaica and Burn-
ham's Guyana.
The heterogeneity of foreign policy
stances and actions reflects a tacit decision
by several countries to operate autono-
mously in the international environment.
There are several manifestations of this.
One notable instance is the active promo-
tion of extraregional exports as substitute
for trade within the Caribbean Community.
Another manifestation is the growing ac-
ceptance of bilateral agreements with in-
dustrial countries which conflict with
regional agreements and understandings,
or which preempt the possibility of regional
approaches to matters of mutual interest.
A closely related example is the de facto
departure from the common policy formu-
lated toward direct foreign investment in the
last decade. Caricom countries have re-
started the intense, often self-defeating


competition which prevailed during the
1960s. The absence of a concerted ap-
proach to the Puerto Rican proposal for for-
eign investment under the Caribbean Basin
Initiative is the most recent illustration of
the competitive nature of policy towards
foreign investment inflows. Briefly, the gov-
ernment of Puerto Rico is offering to finan-
cially support Caricom investments by
firms based in Puerto Rico. In return, Puerto
Rico requests Caricom governments to
lobby the US federal government against
the repeal of Section 936 of the US tax laws
which favors US corporate investment and
related fiscal revenues in Puerto Rico. At
least one Caribbean government has al-
ready supported the Puerto Rican initiative.
Autonomous international policies imply
judgment by those countries that their eco-
nomic growth prospects are improved by
independent as opposed to integrated
efforts. However, the retreat from commu-
nity integration and the tacit decision to go
it alone is shortsighted and unlikely to pro-
duce lasting benefits. Integration alone has
the potential for providing the attributes of
scale and strength essential for beneficial
participation in the international system.
Caribbean Community integration
seems to progress cyclically. The federation
boom of the late 1950s was succeeded by
the no-integration trough of the early 1960s,
the Caribbean Community boom of the
1970s, and now the retreat from integration.
Whether this retreat will deteriorate into a
trough cannot be determined at this point.
However, the opinion can be ventured that as
in the previous cycle, the force of economic
logic and the harsh realities of the interna-
tional environment will reemphasize the
need for community integration. One may
take small comfort from the fact that the
integration peaks seem to get higher and the
troughs shallower with each cycle. O
Crossing Swords is a
regular feature of Carib-
bean Review. The views
expressed herein are
the sole opinion of the
author. Compton
Bourne is professor of
economics at the Uni-
versity of the West In-
dies in St. Augustine,
Trinidad and Tobago, and president of the
Caribbean Studies Association.


CABBEAN PevIEW/3
















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4/CAI?BBEAN IPEV1









Responses and Replies



Is Ideology to Blame?


Comments by Boyer, Jones-Hendrickson, Will and Segal


Understanding America's Virgins
Dear Colleagues:
I am uncertain why S.B. Jones-Hendrickson
wrote such an uncomplimentary review of
my book, America's Virgin Islands: A His-
tory of Human Rights and Wrongs (Carib-
bean Review, XIII: 3, Summer 1984). His
motivation, however, must be ideological,
for he claims that my "ideological con-
straints" and "ideological colors" -which
he otherwise labels conservative-have
prevented me from doing a "requisite anal-
ysis," including an understanding of "the
community of citizens from the Eastern
Caribbean Islands."
His review is curious indeed in light of the
other reviews, all quite favorable, that have
so far appeared. For example, Choice, the
leading review journal for librarians, com-
ments that "no other history of these islands
is as balanced and complete," and recom-
mends it "for all libraries." Whitney T Per-
kins in The Journal of American History
similarly judges it "thorough and balanced,"
and observes that the islands' "poignant
story is well told in this book." Political sci-
entist Paul Leary of the College of the Virgin
Islands, in The Journal of Politics, calls it
"the definitive history of the Virgin Islands"
which "effectively synthesizes over three-
hundred years" of "mistreatment of Virgin
Islanders and raises serious questions
about the future." And lastly, Caribbean
journalist and historian Harold Lidin, in the
San Juan Star, characterizes it a "scholarly
and readable" book "with balance" in which
readers from other English-speaking is-
lands will discover "an informed and sym-
pathetic observer of the 'down-islanders'
role in the Virgin Islands."
In contrast to Jones-Hendrickson's con-
servative label, therefore, lam confident that
those who read my book, now in its second
printing, will also find it a "thorough, bal-
anced and definitive" history, as found by
the other reviewers.
WILLIAM W. BOYER
Charles I Messick Professor
of Public Administration
University of Delaware

S.B. Jones-Hendrickson Replies:
William Boyer contends that he is uncertain
why I wrote such an uncomplimentary re-


view of his book America's Virgin Islands: A
History of Human Rights and Wrongs. He
notes that my motivation must be ideologi-
cal. He says that my review is curious in light
of other positive reviews from others.
It is patently obvious to anyone who has
lived in, worked in and observed the United
States Virgin Islands, as I have for the last 20
years, that Boyer's book leaves much to be
desired from a systematic and systemic
analytical point of view. My ideology has
nothing to do with my review of the book.
The citation of friendly reviews from
friends and others does not negate my
comments. I have no doubt the book will be
widely read. People in the United States Vir-
gin Islands are curious about issues written
on the islands. But whatever ideological
configuration Boyer wishes to ascribe to
me, the fact is, the chronicling of events
does not make for sound historical analysis
from an epistemological point of departure.
Boyer should take my review in the spirit
in which it was written, and determine if
there is any merit in my comments. After all
is said and done, none of his authoritative
reviewers can claim to have the vantage
point that I have. I am living, working, re-
searching, observing the society of which
he wrote. I am not a sojourner in paradise
on an ideological yacht.

A Small Complaint
Dear Colleagues:
I have a small complaint about your fine
publication concerning the negative and
iconoclastic review essay authored by
Aaron Segal (Caribbean Review, Vol. XIII,
No. 2, Spring 1984). First of all, I am puzzled
by the logic of tossing together in one re-
view essay such an incongruous combina-
tion of works as an annual reference
volume, mid-1980s books from a variety of
disciplines, and my own coedited work on
international relations that went to press in
mid-1978 (which is now largely dated and
sold out, with a sequel volume soon to be
released). Further, it appears none of the
works was really read; otherwise how could
this professor at the University of Texas at El
Paso possibly castigate all of the volumes as
being singularly one-dimensional in ideo-
logical perspective. The Restless Carib-
bean certainly was not-with chapters by
such diverse scholars as William Demas


and the late British Governor Blackburne of
Jamaica, plus the differing perspectives of
such US specialists as dependency-ori-
ented Ray Duncan and also Larman Wilson,
whose mid-1970s text on Latin American-
Caribbean politics did not use one single
reference by a dependency author.
More importantly, how can Segal say the
only worthwhile essay in Latin America and
Caribbean Contemporary Record is the ar-
ticle by a director of the American Enter-
prise Institute, Howard Wiarda, while
ignoring equally well-drafted essays by au-
thors of differing ideological persuasions,
such as that by Robert Pastor, to name one.
Despite minor errors in Volume 1 of Latin
America and Caribbean Contemporary
Record (Volume 2 was in print long before
the Segal review), this massive annual refer-
ence book is a truly important work on Latin
American and Caribbean affairs. Nor is
Segal's sharp criticism of the volume edited
by Stone and Henry entirely justified. In
short, it is unfair to uniformly "blast" all of
the reviewed works primarily out of ideolog-
ical pique. Also, Segal should not be too
critical of minor errors since he has mis-
spelled my four-letter name in his review!
As Ed Dew and I wrote in a coauthored
review essay for Choice (including over 170
books of all ideological persuasions), most
of the recent works on the Caribbean basin
have something to add to scholarship, be
they pro- or anti-Reagan or dependency, or
geopolitics-power oriented. Problems in the
Caribbean and Latin America are too im-
portant for scholars to limit their reading to
one partisan or ideological viewpoint. To
paraphrase Professor Segal's closing line,
reviews can also be faulted.
W. MARVIN WILL
University of Tulsa

Aaron Segal Replies:
I apologize to W Marvin Will for the mis-
spelling of his name in my review of his
coedited book, The Restless Caribbean.
No apologies are due, though, for my review
of the book, which Professor Will candidly
admits "is now largely dated." I agree, and
found that its pursuit of instant topicality
made it dated when first published. Is it too
much to ask that a book still be worth read-
ing several years after it first appears? [


CAIrBBEAN VIEW/5

























S T he present economic crisis in the Ca-
ribbean region has focused the atten-
tion of almost everyone on economic
independence. Economists are consulted
daily on strategies for recuperation. Not all
of them have much hope that the discipline
Scan offer the answers. And it is interesting to
I see how many are advising that political
directorates and economic planners should
---. look more and more to human variables in
S the equation. Arthur Lewis, the Caribbean
Nobel laureate, once said that he would ad-
vise politicians to provide high schools with
- curricula in the creative arts to make better
and more resourceful citizens of their
constituents.
S There is a branch of progressive thinking
in the region that is now talking about cul-
tural sovereignty, what with the influence of
satellite, cable television and things Ameri-
can on the region's young. Out of Canada
comes a comment germane to the Carib-
*bean situation in a column by Mavor Moore,
writing in the Globe and Mail of Toronto (2
February 1985): "Attachment to the dream
of economic independence has for a long
time blinded many to the greater impor-
*tance of preserving an opportunity for cul-
tural growth. Away back in 1967, a reporter
asked the economist J. K. Galbraith which
he thought the more important, and Gal-
braith warned that economic independence
was no longer possible for any country, any-
where in the world. 'If I were still a practicing
as distinct from an advisory Canadian,' Gal-
braith said, 'I would be much more con-
cerned about maintaining the cultural
integrity of the broadcasting system and
about making sure that Canada has an ac-
tive, independent theatre, book publishing
industry, newspapers, magazines and
schools of poets and painters .... These are
the things that are important for the mainte-
nance of cultural autonomy.' 'But don't you
think,' the reporter insisted, 'that Canada
should make a determined effort to in-

Rex Nettleford is director of extra-mural stud-
ies and head of the Trade Union Education
Institute at the University of the West Indies,
Mona, Jamaica. He is the founder and artistic
Um director of the National Dance Theater Com-
pany of Jamaica.


6/CAP?BBEAN PIEVie











Definition and Development

The Need for Caribbean Creativity

By Rex Nettleford


crease its stake in the Canadian economy?'
Galbraith dug in his heels: would say this is
a very minor consideration as compared
with increasing the Canadian stake in the
things I've just mentioned. These are things
that count.'"
These are the things that count, indeed,
in the Caribbean, though one is forced to
ask of that formidable constituency of Ca-
ribbean scholars called economists
whether there exists among them a continu-
ing practical concern about the ineffective-
ness of the economic mechanism (whether
Keynesian, Marxian or Friedmanesque).
Are they driven to any moral revulsion
against the results in the deepening of
human misery which has become a world-
wide phenomenon, putting the Caribbean
in the mainstream of global poverty and
alienation from self and society?
The search for new patterns and new de-
signs for social living is the common anx-
iety of mankind at end-of-century; and for
many, the hope is that out of this evil will
come some good. The bourgeois dispensa-
tion of the 19th century is passing, if not yet
dead; it has spawned empires which legit-
imized the domination of the weak by the
strong; has prompted the antidote of an
alternative system of thought which con-
tinues to promise redemption to millions
who are the victims of social injustice; and
has found political/military/industrial ex-
pression in another post-World War II giant,
nowadays cast in the role of infidel to the
West's Christian faithful. The embrace of
just about all of humanity within the orbit of
lingering decay, and the accompanying di-
alectical process of change, imposes on a
world that is hardly prepared for it the
urgency of discovery of appropriate, if not
altogether new, ways of viewing social real-
ity, of interpreting that reality, and even of
changing it. The new battles are being
fought for the most part with weapons from
old arsenals-a very human thing in fact.
But no less human is the capacity to break
new frontiers of knowledge, of know-why
and knowhow, based on already accumu-
lated knowledge rooted in historical experi-
ence and existential reality, and aided
at times by that hunch which scientists
and artists alike admit has often cata-


pulted mankind into genuine discoveries
about itself.
The process of discovery means not only
the breaking down of fences in received and
established disciplines of ontology and
epistemology, but also the equal accep-
tance of the discrete knowledge rooted in
the experience of peoples like those inhabit-
ing the Caribbean. Legitimacy has, after all,
been too long and blatantly reserved for
those who will have proven their worth in
terms of their abilityto subjugate lesser peo-
ples, whether by military means or by the
mystification of technological and scientific
knowledge as a weapon of intellectual and
psychological control, or by systematic
mythmaking about the superiority of artis-
tic culture produced in those parts of the
world generally known as "the North" in the
jargon of development economics.
Even the designations for the recognized
axes of crisis are misleading. For the North,
while it embraces the industrial nations of
the North Atlantic, must, by the criteria of
technological advancement and GNP
achievements, include the European out-
posts in the Antipodes, the Soviet Union
and, of course, Japan, which would be
placed geographically in a region called the
Far East-"far" to those who regard them-
selves as the center of the world. The South
is supposed to comprise the developing
countries, also known as the Third World:
largely non-White, primary-producing (ag-
ricultural products and minerals), low on
the scale of per capital income, overpopu-
lated, malnourished, and presumed to be
without the blessings of advanced culture.
But all of this confuses rather than en-
lightens. For where does one place India,
which is by no means culturally backward
and certainly not devoid of a scientific ca-
pability; or China for that matter? And what
of parts of Latin America: the splendidly
Eurocentric Southern Cone, for example,
which does not regard itself as the Third
World? Nor are Venezuela, Mexico and Bra-
zil economic dwarfs. And the Middle East
cannot be said to be short on cultural ped-
igree or oil wealth. The further division of
the Third World into a Fourth World, with its
poorest of the poor, hardly resolves the co-
nundrum. Then there are South Korea, Tai-


wan and Singapore, the marvels of
capitalist development, which share the bril-
liant performance of the North in industrial
development but do not escape the social
disparities of their developing confreres.
The imponderables of freedom and demo-
cratic rights are, after all, part of the claims
of the conventional North to a superior qual-
ity of life. But are any of the economic mar-
vels truly democratic? The diminutive
limestone-rock nations of the Caribbean re-
gard themselves as members of the South,
but they are not poor enough to continue
qualifying for soft loans according to the
canons of World Bank lending.
The East-West designation serves to con-
fuse no less. Are we to continue in the belief
that the world is really divided so sim-
plistically between the United States, seen
as the paragon of liberal democracy, and
the Soviet Union, portrayed as the diabolic
apostle of cretinous communism? What
kind of dualism is this that brooks no admit-
tance into our consciousness of a textured,
diverse, checkered existence which is the
reality of the world many of us inhabit na-
tionally, regionally and globally? North-
South and East-West as working paradigms
are seductive quick-fix labels for quick-fix
solutions. They too frequently result in be-
wilderment and confusion. There is indeed
need for much unlearning and redefining.
We operate under a false taxonomy, and the
need to find our own proper nouns towards
self-definition is very real.
Nowhere is this felt more than in that
piece of real estate known as the Third
World (again, one is never clear where lies
the First and what constitutes the Second).
For the Third World turf is up for grabs by
those who would wish to restore or retain
old relationships which once ensured the
total subjugation of one set of people by
another in the interest of power. If economic
security, an irresistible fact of self-preserva-
tion, is the main objective of what has been
our global history, then the known means of
achieving it through political coercion and
cultural conditioning are of no less urgent
concern to mankind in trying to make
sense of existence. That is why the sche-
matic separation of elements in this com-
plex process of endurance into materialistic


CAI?BBEAN IEVIW/7








base and ideational superstructure, instead
of treating them together in the dynamic
symbiotic relationship in which they in fact
coexist, is certain disaster for Caribbean
studies and the learning process. This is so
in a world that must now question not only
Marx (or rather his epigones) but also Jesus
and the Christians and John Locke and his
liberal progenies. Some would add Freud
and the Freudians. All these protagonists
have bequeathed legacies of inestimable
value to mankind and continue to be
sources of energy especially for non-Euro-
pean peoples like ourselves, conscripted
into the West over time and now seeking
deliverance from the worst consequences of
that conscription. But these endearing au-
thorities are none of them the final or only
clues to global learning. Perhaps the jour-
ney back to first principles is what now
beckons us all to new thinking and, by ex-
tension, to appropriate action, rather than
the perpetuation of a habit of study and
analysis which seeks truth in blind faith or
via the routine regurgitations of unctious
dogma. For the wheel must come full circle
to herald the revolution that the Caribbean
and the world now seem to seek.
The journey back to first principles must
undoubtedly turn inter alia on questions
about the paths to cognition and the char-
acter of human society, especially when
viewed through the spectrum of culture,
here perceived as the process and products
of the creative imagination and the creative
intellect. Perhaps this may take us beyond
the limiting categorization of the world into
developed and developing, North and
South, East and West, democratic and
communist, and release it from the stasis of
a cozy bipolarization into a more dynamic
state of existence perceived in terms of con-
tinuing social interaction and the organic
interpenetration between any two or more
of the myriad points of reference available to
human intelligence and activity. Much of
this is what constitutes dialectical thinking,
brilliantly articulated as a principle of sense-
making and "scientific" social analysis by
Karl Marx. The subsequent vulgarization
and distortion of this perfectly valid and
indispensable tool of man's perception of
himself, and his relations to his society, is no
good reason to dismiss it as irrelevant to the
future of the region; no more than the use of
the Christian redemptive formula to civilize
the tens of millions dragged into chattel
slavery and brutal exploitation over three
centuries could rob that most Western of
credos of its power to later emancipate
those very slaves and provide ensuing com-
munities of freed people with moral forti-
tude and inspiration for the shaping of new
societies in freedom, way into the 20th
century.
The task for Caribbean studies is to steer
our people through a learning process that
will guarantee intellectual plasticity, flexibil-
ity and adaptability. By this I mean a learn-


ing process embracing all the elements
involved on the road to cognition and pre-
paring the learner with life skills for coping
with a range of contradictions, and a Carib-
bean world defined by cultural, racial, politi-
cal and social diversity simultaneously
determining and being determined by a va-
riety of approaches to, or perceptions
about, human material development. In
short, an integrated universe of knowledge
is here being invoked to inform a framework
of studies capable of preparing individuals
to develop a kaleidoscopic view of the world
while retaining a full grasp of the nature,
function and potential of the individual ele-



The post-colonial Carib-
bean is saddled with

revolutionaries plagiarizing
Lenin or Trotsky.

ments, each of which possesses a separate
existence, and which together form differing
patterns with every new shift in the position
of the parameters within which such ele-
ments dynamically coexist. If shifting para-
digms are a function of our current
Caribbean crisis, they are no less a source
of energy for creative learning and intel-
lectual daring.
Creative Intellect
Creative learning and intellectual daring are
what the scholars-researchers, analysts and
disseminators orbiting around Caribbean
studies must be concerned about. And such
scholars will seldom show their mettle if
they are the sort of specialists who, accord-
ing to J. K. Galbraith, "righteously exclude
what it is convenient not to know." For in the
real world "what it is not convenient to
know" frequently turns out to be precisely
what is most important to the people for
whose development economists and social
planners devise theoretical constructs as
guides to public policy. The imponderables
to economic analysts are often what are
central to the concerns of producers, con-
sumers and voters.
The interplay between so-called irrational
religious fervor, rational political institu-
tional forms, and the economic realities of
people's need for ready access to scarce
resources on the basis of equitable distribu-
tion, is the very stuff of contemporary life all
over the globe. Deep and passionate feel-
ings about race and ethnicity sometimes
have more to do with the profile of political
instability and economic disequilibrium
than the scientistic social scientist seems
willing to admit. Perceptions about the real
world cast in the mold of such impondera-
bles may have far more influence on life as it
is lived than the best-laid rational plans and
manifestos of political parties declaring
what life will or ought to be. Opium of the


masses or not, religion is a deep social force
with which decision makers must grapple in
many countries west and east of the Iron
Curtain. It is no accident that in the Carib-
bean the struggle for intellectual and cul-
tural control of the region comes in the form
of not only the ideologies of the two super-
powers, but in the assertive media evange-
lism which has transcended North Ameri-
can borders with the proselytizing zeal of
apostles like Billy Graham, Oral Roberts
and Jimmy Swaggart. In fact, a whole range
of cultural factors now challenges develop-
ment theorists and practitioners and Carib-
beanist scholars to serious confrontation
with such realities as language (a special
problem for communication specialists and
information scientists), religion, kinship
patterns, artistic manifestations, ontologi-
cal and epistemological perceptions of the
human condition, attitudes toward author-
ity, as well as indigenous ancestral tradi-
tions of production, distribution and
exchange.
Without a full understanding of this fact, a
global perspective of Caribbean reality is
well nigh impossible. This perspective is
best grasped through ease of communica-
tion and interaction, not only across racial,
sexual and national boundaries, but across
barriers of academic disciplines and an
even wider intellectual and cultural divide.
Such ease of communication would be
best achieved via the route which recog-
nizes the phenomenon of creativity as the
common thread that runs through all forms
of human knowledge. In an age of high
technology challenging large masses of our
adult population to intellectual retooling, all
educational activity must avoid being
trapped in the timeworn disagreement be-
tween the culture of science and the culture
of the arts and humanities in the perceptual
grasp of the world(s) man inhabits.
In this computer and technological age,
the temptation to invoke the unassailable
objectivity (and therefore the immutable
verity) of science is very real. One result is to
place on the defensive the so-called subjec-
tive (and therefore "less valid") humanities,
arts, history, literature, politics and even ec-
onomics, which claims to be an objective,
value-free social science. The claims by the
scientific school to absolute truth is coun-
tered by the arts and humanities fraternity,
which does not hesitate to clobber the sci-
entists with the poetic insights some would
insist come from God or some extrasen-
sory source. But as we know, the tradition of
opposing the humanities to the sciences
and of defining the world in terms of these
two separate "cultures" (C. P Snow, The
Two Cultures) has long raised questions as
to whether such assumptions have any
basis in fact.
In any case, the failure of the social sci-
ences to be scientific-in the conventional
and mistaken view of science as being ob-
jective and analytical, totally value-free and


8/CARBBEAN IevIEW








devoid of passion, subjectivity and human
prejudice-has long robbed protagonists
on both sides of infallibility. Many have dis-
covered that verifiable, observable facts are
not the only phenomena capable of study,
even if some Caribbean social scientists are
yet to admit it. Belief systems, ideologies,
attitudes, sensibilities, cultural identity and
life-styles are numbered among the vari-
ables that must now be studied alongside
quantifiable matter that in fact exist in the
social universe-that is if academic investi-
gaton is to provide life with meaning.
"[We] scientists are no different from any-
one else. We are passionate human beings,
enmeshed in a web of personal and social
circumstances," asserts biologist Stephen
Jay Gould. Yet too many Caribbean social
scientists pretend this is not so. Indeed, the
contribution of science to mankind is best
judged by the process that spawns the dis-
covery rather than by the product which is
the visible, touchable result of the process.
Einstein is regarded as a creator: a scientist
who made technology possible. Picasso is a
genius not because he created paintings
that can hang on walls, but more impor-
tantly because he created genres of paint-
ing that generated more products in, and
advanced the art of, painting. The same is
the case with Marx and Keynes in their ca-
reers as social scientists. They are all con-
nected by the fact of their engagement in
the creative process rather than by what
they produced, which on the face of it is
admittedly different. It is their common im-
mersion in that process of creating which
gives clues to learning, education and the
common humanity of man.
Even the artist who is led to believe that
he has a monopoly on the creative process
needs to be liberated from such entrapment
in arrogance. For his form of expression is
also a form of intellectual activity. Like the
scientist, he is involved with the systematic
ordering of form out of disparate elements,
or chaos, if you like. The artist also orga-
nizes, adapts and innovates whether he
works with wood, clay, paint, metal, sound,
words or human bodies in motion. The ap-
plication of mind no less than spirit in the
shaping of form out of substance con-
stitutes the act of intelligence which is every
human achievement. The process which
takes each category of human achievers to
the point of production has at its center the
exercise of mind variously described as the
creative intellect and the creative imagina-
tion. These two manifestations of the pro-
cess work in tandem to produce the finest
results worthy of the name innovation. The
truly creative producer, whether in natural
science, the humanities, the arts or the so-
cial sciences, finally discovers that there is
no unbridgeable gap between intellect and
passion, no dichotomy between morality
and reality, no logical opposition between
truth and virtue; moreover, understanding


without compassion and wisdom without
mercy are contradictions in terms.
Implications for Education
The implications are far-reaching in the crit-
ical quest for new patterns and appropriate
designs for social living. Firstly, the thrust
into training at the expense of education is
undesirable, for it is not an investment in the
region's future capacity to generate new
knowledge, innovate new techniques, or
make original discoveries. No one under-
stands the blight of intellectual dependency,
disguised behind artisanal efficiency or im-
itative competence, more than the Carib-
bean colonial creature trained to follow the
mores of a "superior" culture through imita-
tion rather than through innovation. He is
adept at mimicking and performing more
than he is at creating from primary sources.
The post-colonial Caribbean is saddled with
a legacy of so many public administrators
out-Westminstering Westminster, so many
commission agents without a trace of cre-
ative entrepreneurial acumen, so many ed-
ucators training their wards in the "civilized"
and sometimes abandoned ways of the
metropole, so many revolutionaries pla-
giarizing Lenin or Trotsky instead of rooting
their revolutions in their own soils. Admit-
tedly there have been rebellions against im-
perialism, and there is evidence of creative
energy adapting, adjusting what is already
known, and forging new manifestations out
of this. But such efforts are yet to bring
about the fundamental change in worldview
needed for serious breakthroughs. Political
independence itself is yet to bring the sort of
liberation that celebrates true territorial and
cultural sovereignty.
The legacy of centuries of colonial condi-
tioning takes its toll most tellingly on the ex-
colonials' struggles to release their mental
universe from the smothering embrace of
the mother country. Metaphor becomes
stark reality in the practical world of relation-
ships between colonial child and imperial
mother. The process of conditioning is itself
an object lesson in pedagogy and child de-
velopment. The child defers to parental au-
thority anchored, as it is, in experience
which teaches wisdom. That wisdom is to
be grasped first by imitation in every partic-


ular: language, gesture, lifestyle, worldview.
But the child eventually grows up, it is
grudgingly conceded. Adolescence, in the
eyes of the parent, is a period of adjustment
and adaptation, but this occurs under the
watchful eye of mother, who supervises the
apprenticeship, sometimes with self-in-
dulgent pride. Mother Britain, more than
France and better than Belgium, (and the
USA is yet to learn how) did this with con-
summate skill through carefully stage-
managed periods of phased transfer of
power to the colonies, which sat their exam-
inations in public administration and social
responsibility, set by the mother country
and invigilated by liberal plume-hatted vice-
roys. Each stage of successful sitting is re-
warded with a certificate of merit
progressively labeled as responsible gov-
ernment, ministerial system, full internal
self-government and finally independence
or dominion status.
Soon it is realized that the certificate is
awarded on mother's terms and carries the
perennial stamp of mother's tutelage as seal
of approval. Then there are preferred mar-
kets in the mother country guaranteeing, in
effect, a continuing economic dependency
on the parental household. The entire edu-
cational system, as the determinant of
socioeconomic development and cultural
certitude, remains, even in independence,
the faithful, if oftentimes unsuitable, replica
of the mother country's own system, pre-
sided over by native inheritors educated in
the best schools of the metropole. Efforts at
change are sometimes little more than pe-
ripheral reforms, with the virtually impreg-
nable core remaining the mother's
hallowed bequest.
So the revolutionary impulse strikes
again (for it did strike several times in ado-
lescent years) in an effort to proceed to the
final stage of the learning-development
continuum-that of creativity seen by many
an erstwhile colony as an open break with
colonial tradition. But this break is nowhere
as easy or as simple as it appears. Derek
Walcott has long reminded his colonial
compatriots-New World "victims of tradi-
tion" as he described them-that "those
who break a tradition first hold it in awe....


CArBBEAN PEI1EW/9








They know that by openly fighting tradition
we perpetuate it, that revolutionary litera-
ture is a filial impulse, and that maturity is
the assimilation of the features of every an-
cestor." The model of child growth from
infancy through adolescence to adulthood
has its learning analogue in imitation
through adaptation-adjustment to
creativity. But too few of us seem able to
achieve this creativity as release from a
stunted adolescence in which intellect is
dwarfed and imagination is robbed of its
animating will.
Of course trust and respect from the
wider world will come to the Caribbean only
if it is not assumed that the creative process,
manifest in the discoveries of science and
technology, is the monopoly of the indus-
trialized or "civilized" countries. An African
leader once reminded the West that all
human development is rooted in creativity
and that Africa was not short on that gift of
civilized man. But he also stressed that
manifestations of that creativity on the Af-
rican continent were not restricted to artistic
culture as Europe tended to emphasize, but
embraced science and technology as well.
He could have added philosophy and social
theory, which were in place before Europe
explored the "Dark Continent." But even if
the arts were the greatest or only manifesta-
tion of a civilization's creativity, there would
be something to learn from the common
process that leads to all discovery-artistic
and otherwise.
The route that takes us to better under-
standing of the world and to basic knowl-
edge is best taken as if going on ajourneyto
discovery. It may be that not enough is
known about that journey, but a study of the
way in which artistic and/or scientific dis-
coveries have been made, rather than sim-
ply the discoveries themselves, would help.
Such study should not be restricted to the
careers of great individuals who are known
discoverers in the varied fields of science,
the arts and the humanities. In places like
the Caribbean, the collective genius of the
ordinary people who have created villages,
systems of political organization, designs
for social living seen in kinship patterns,
socialization strategies, religious institu-
tions and belief-systems, needs to be taken
really seriously. The specificity of such ex-
periences is the proper point of departure
towards global understanding; and plan-
ning experts and political leaders in the Ca-
ribbean continue to ignore, at their peril, the
lessons to be learned from the creative pro-
cess that informs the cultural realities and
survival energy of the mass of the popula-
tions they say they wish to modernize.
All strategies of development are best
seen as creative enterprises rather than as
exercises in the slavish reproduction of pet
models external to a particular people's his-
torical experience and existential reality. The
socialist or capitalist path to development
cannot possibly be the only choice open to


mankind, especially when capitalism and
socialism themselves are adjusting and
adapting to new realities at their home
bases. In any case, deliverance from pov-
erty, unemployment, ignorance, disease
and fear is still on the agenda of most peo-
ple's concerns in the world today. The lesson
here is that solutions to problems of the
developing Caribbean will have to be found
in the Caribbean itself, whatever the help
from outside may be. And the discovery
had better be informed by the creative pro-
cess as an antidote to the balkanization of
consciousness which is Western man's bi-
polar perception of the world in terms of



The socialist or capitalist
path to development
cannot possibly be the only
choices open to mankind.


science versus art, democracy versus com-
munism, bourgeois versus proletariat,
Christianity versus paganism, etc. None of
these arbitrary arenas of conflict speak as
totally to global or Caribbean reality as
is claimed.
It is in the exercise of the creative imag-
ination and intellect that the escape from
bifurcated perceptions of the world has
been achieved by creative individuals, as
well as by collectivities of humans, in their
fight against marginalization in societies
that would indulge a boorish biological de-
terminism to keep the majority under-
class-women, blacks and other non-
Aryans-in their place. Happily, the reaction
against much of this is signal of hope, de-
spite enduring poverty among the world's
millions, continuing prejudice against
women (women's lib notwithstanding) and
the tenacious hold that apartheid has on
South Africa. The fear of nuclear annihila-
tion frightens the developed world, while the
fear of annihilation by hunger and disease
immobilizes the developing world. Yet there
is enough experience to promise hope.
That hope resides in man's ability to create
out of the depths of his experience-wher-
ever he is, whatever his economic condition
or station in life, and whatever his genes.
The need to place the human being back
at the center of the cosmos is real. No idea-
tional system that eschews the notion of a
psychological core to social reality, or pre-
tends that human nature plays no signifi-
cant part in political or economic
development, is likely to survive in the Ca-
ribbean. And the resurgence of the religious
impulse and creative arts worldwide seem
to want to end the depersonalization of con-
sciousness and to celebrate man as the final
measure of all things.
The attributes shared by human beings


everywhere, other than the entry into this
world by birth and exit through death, man-
ifest themselves in human nature and in the
universal results of the continuous interac-
tion between that nature and man's environ-
ment through the creative process. It is in
this sense that I endorse many of the views
expressed in Frederick Turner's recent re-
flective essay on technology and the future
of the imagination. He declares apho-
ristically: "We have nature; that nature
is cultural; that culture is classical." Indeed
it has to be-whether that culture manifests
itself in the music of tribal Africa, the cuisine
of the Chinese, the gothic cathedrals and
renaissance paintings of Europe, the urban
skyline of modern America, the pyramids of
ancient Peru, Mexico or Egypt, the religious
expressions of the world ranging from ani-
mism to judaic monotheism, or the political
systems and kinship patterns which are to
be found in their varied versions all over
the globe.
They are all "classical" because they are
crafted to a kind of perfection according to
the laws of harmony, melody, color, propor-
tion, rhythm and balance as part of the or-
dering process common to all human
activity, whether in the sciences, the arts or
the humanities. Classicism is'not the exclu-
sive terrain of the so-called high civilizations
of past or aspiring imperial powers, as bio-
logical determinists or protectors of the im-
perial status quo parading as social
anthropologists would have us believe. As
long as that process, global as it is, is univer-
sally recognized to be the monopoly of no
one master race, superpower or technologi-
cal giant, the products of man's creative
imagination and intellect can effectively
contribute to development in their inevit-
ably diverse forms and in circumstances
where difference does not invite a hierarchi-
cal ordering into high and low culture, clas-
sical-superior and ethnic-inferior.
A new international economic order
makes no sense without a new international
cultural order. The attitudinal stance by de-
veloped countries in relating to the poorer
countries of the world may be a function of
perceptions about the cultural capabilities
of the latter, where achievement in science
and technology is given great weight in de-
termining the cultural and power pecking
order. This is all the more reason, then, why
the language of culture, like the language of
economics and politics, must receive
urgent overhauling to serve the reality of the
human condition.
Such redefinitions form part of the
search for new patterns and designs for so-
cial living. Such redefinitions, or the need
for them, must determine the agenda for
Caribbean studies. Perhaps the future is not
in doubt after all, if we accept what is to be
done. But will the very idea of such redefini-
tions be allowed to help the Caribbean re-
discover itself for itself? That, too, may, but
need not be, in doubt. E


S1/CAIBBEAN e VIEW










Caribbean Science and


Technology

Do They Exist?

By Wallace C. Koehler and Aaron Segal


he mobilization of science and tech-
nology for development in the Carib-
bean has been agonizingly slow. The
region and each of its states remain over-
whelmingly dependent on imported sci-
ence and technology. Efforts to foster
indigenous capabilities, although at very
different stages from country to country,
have limited impact. While rapid progress
has been made in a number of countries,
science and technology remain marginal
and precariously institutionalized.
Science and technology have a long, un-
even history in the Caribbean. For several
centuries, science was the prerogative of
learned amateurs. Technology was mostly
imported and lightly adapted. The first sig-
nificant Caribbean adaptations of science
and technology occurred in the late 19th
and early 20th centuries, with the introduc-
tion of the steam engine and railway, and the
control of yellow fever and other mosquito-
borne diseases. The striking decreases in
mortality in Cuba, Puerto Rico and the West
Indies after 1900 were based on applied
research, demonstration and diffusion.
These successes contributed to the estab-
lishment in the 1920s of modest agri-
cultural, tropical medicine and public health
research facilities.
In general the Caribbean colonial
heritage in science and technology was ori-
ented towards production of export crops,
and failed to provide career opportunities
for local scientists. Secondary and univer-
sity education retained their humanities and
law bias. Societies rigidly stratified by race
and class failed to diffuse popular knowl-
edge of science and technology. The drive
towards indigenous science and technol-
ogy capabilities has roots in Caribbean po-
litical nationalism. It is an expression of the
desire to reduce political and economic de-
pendency, to provide outlets for national
Wallace C. Koehler is head of technology and
policy assessment at the Center for Energy
and Environment Research, University of
Puerto Rico, San Juan. Aaron L. Segal
teaches political science at the University of
Texas at El Paso. He is coauthor of Haiti, Politi-
cal Failures, Cultural Successes (Praeger,
1984).


Oil lab technician.
creativity, and to generate economic growth
which is subject to national direction.
Concern for national science and tech-
nology policies, planning and institutions
began in Cuba in the 1960s, and by the
mid-1980s has been appearing in most of
the region. However government awareness
of possible roles for science and technology
has not been accompanied by private sec-
tor or academic participation, or by much
public support. Scientific communities
within the Caribbean have vastly extended
their contacts over the last two decades, but
their principal ties are still outside the re-
gion. Lacking internal funding, adequate
equipment, competitive salaries, techni-
cians and information services, most Carib-
bean national scientific communities are
loosely structured and organized. At the re-
gional level their ties are still embryonic. The
pressure for mobilizing science and tech-
nology has come from politicians rather
than scientists. It is fueled by the frustrations
accompanying energy imports, massive ex-


ternal debts, limited markets for traditional
exports, and popular demands, and is often
derived from a naive belief that science and
technology, once mobilized, can respond to
urgent short-term problems. At the first
meeting of Caribbean ministers responsi-
ble for science and technology in 1983, one
politician remarked, "I cannot go back to
my government and say that all we have
produced is another report."
The promise of a mobilized science and
technology capability can only be realized if
and when indigenous infrastructures come
into being. This requires years of effort: im-
proving and expanding the teaching of sci-
ence in the schools; popular science and
technology education programs for adults;
the establishment of critical masses of well-
funded and supported researchers with ef-
fective networks within and outside the re-
gion; and agreement on research priorities.
The development of such infrastructure is
necessary, although its size may vary.

National Capabilities
Cuba has the most impressive science and
technology infrastructure in the Caribbean,
but it does not work well. Having adopted
the highly centralized Soviet model of plan-
ning, and even the Soviet system of pre and
postdoctoral degrees, Cuba now has a pool
of researchers, institutes, science informa-
tion and documentation systems, priorities
and plans, publications and meetings; but
results are limited. The Cuban Academy of
Science administers the dozen major in-
stitutes, and universities are relegated to
training and some applied research. Enter-
prises lack authority and funds to engage in
shop-floor adaptation and innovation; thus
learning-by-doing suffers. The central in-
stitutes work to rigid plans and have poor
links with producers and universities. Di-
recting research and development funding
toward sugar mechanization and use of by-
products is also questionable. Cuba is the
only Caribbean country with a policy and an
infrastructure, but science and technology
are neither contributing to economic
growth nor reducing dependency. Ironically,
the major Cuban equity gains in extending
education, health and other services have


CAIBBEAN PEViW/ 11










































@ Linda Marston, 1985


been through management and invest-
ment, not research and development.
Puerto Rico has a science and technol-
ogy infrastructure in search of a policy. Next
to Cuba it has the largest number of re-
searchers and greatest amount of research
spending in the region. US federal govern-
ment agencies support agriculture, forestry,
fisheries, climatology, and other basic and
applied research there. The University of
Puerto Rico and several newer universities
carry out applied and basic research. The
island government has modest applied re-
search programs in a number of fields.
While the private sector relies basically on
unrestricted technology transfer from the
United States, there is evidence of some
informal shop-floor adaptation. However
Puerto Rico has no national science and
technology planning, policy or institutions.
The Center for Energy and Environment
Research of the University of Puerto Rico is
currently engaged in studying a proposed
science and technology center. This would
involve the use of fiscal incentives to moti-
vate multinational firms located on the is-
land to substantially increase their local
research and development efforts. It would
be the first attempt in the Caribbean to es-
tablish institutionalized university-private
sector links for research, drawing on US
experience.
The Dominican Republic has conducted
fragmented and highly uneven research in


agriculture, alternative energy systems,
fisheries and other areas. Government min-
isters, semipublic corporations, nonprofit
foundations and universities compete for
far-too-few researchers, technicians and
funds. Efforts at coordination through sci-
ence and technology offices and presiden-
tial science advisers have faltered. Each
research and development unit jealously
seeks to guard its turf. The National Energy
Policy Commission was established in 1979
and has launched several research pro-
grams, but with little coordination or co-
herence. If Cuba is overcentralized, the
Dominican Republic suffers from the op-
posite problem, spreading scarce resources
too thinly and widely. It has particularly ne-
glected investment in science education,
programs for adults and information sys-
tems. One result is that it still basically de-
pends on overseas graduate study in the
sciences and engineering, in spite of huge
increases in undergraduate student enroll-
ment on the island.
Haiti, with a population of 5 million, has
the weakest science infrastructure in the
region. Three decades of brain drain have
resulted in more Haitian researchers abroad
than within the country. A handful of for-
eign-funded projects in agriculture, alterna-
tive energy, and reforestation through fast-
growing species go on; but high turnover,
low salaries, poor networking, lack of infor-
mation systems, and other problems


quickly frustrate researchers. National plans
and policies are reduced to empty words in
the absence of an infrastructure or serious
efforts to create one. Since most Haitians
receive less than three years of formal edu-
cation, one must begin with elementary sci-
ence concepts imparted by audiovisual,
radio and other means-in Creole rather
than French. One of the few hopeful ele-
ments in the Haitian picture is the remark-
able informal learning-by-doing of Haitian
entrepreneurs in producing local compo-
nents for assembly plants. Haiti has made
outstanding progress in taking advantage
of low-cost labor, and tax and other incen-
tives, to replace imported components for
baseballs and other products with locally-
produced ones.
The French Antilles and French Guiana,
and the Netherlands Antilles, still rely on the
metropolitan countries for most of their sci-
ence, technology and institutions. This re-
sults in excellent marine biology, tropical
forestry and other centers staffed by Euro-
pean scientists. Applied research on local
problems, though, has had to await the re-
cent organization of local universities and
research institutes.
The independent mainland states of Be-
lize, Suriname and Guyana share low popu-
lation densities, large tracts of undeveloped
territory, and the possibilities of unexploited
natural resources. Their research efforts and
policies are at similar stages: seeking the


12/CAI?BBEAN INIEEW









funds, personnel and organization to carry
out comprehensive natural resource sur-
veys. Government ministries, universities
and technical colleges, and other organiza-
tions are unequal to the task; donors oper-
ate on a project-by-project basis. Guyana,
with its predominant public sector, has
gone furthest in national science and tech-
nology policy and planning, but has little
ability to implement results. Belize and Sur-
iname are mostly groping to improve ex-
tremely weak infrastructures.
The smaller Leeward and Windward Is-
lands lack policy, planning, institutions, re-
searchers and research. Scattered projects,
often on alternative energy, are externally
funded and implemented with minimal lo-
cal participation. The exceptions are the ap-
propriate technology centers promoted by
the Caribbean Council of Churches, but
their record of adaptation and diffusion of
results is spotty. There has been little con-
sideration of what constitutes appropriate
science and technology infrastructure for
these islands and too much emphasis on
policy and institutions. Perhaps the empha-
sis in the small islands of the Eastern Carib-
bean should be on science education and
popular science for adults. Long-distance
teaching by radio and satellite, and com-
puter and audiovisual technologies can all
be used to raise indigenous capabilities
without costly formal instruction. Research
should be undertaken at the request of, and
with the full participation of, locals even if
this means a slower timetable.
There is an enormous contrast between
the research and development capabilities
of Trinidad and Tobago and those of the rest
of the Eastern Caribbean. Housing a cam-
pus of the University of the West Indies, the
Caribbean Industrial Research Center serv-
ing the private sector, a branch of the Carib-
bean Agricultural Research Development
Institute, and various government ministry
efforts, Trinidad has a working, if inade-
quate, infrastructure. The government de-
cision to invest oil revenues in joint venture
industrial export projects in petrochemicals
has also improved local information and
documentation capabilities. Trinidad has
and should continue to provide advice on
technology and technology transfer to the
Eastern Caribbean. Like Puerto Rico, it has
an infrastructure in search of a policy. This
is reflected in the discussions over a strat-
egy for joint ventures and technology trans-
fers, industrial import substitution, and the
proposed National Institute of Higher Edu-
cation, Research, Science and Technology.
Small-scale scattered applied research
efforts in a number of areas, including agri-
culture and marine biology, have limited
impact. Attention must be given to science
education and information to improve and
extend the infrastructure.
Barbados has relied on both informal
and formal networks to achieve coherent if


modest performance. It benefits from the
location in the country of the Caribbean
Development Bank, the headquarters of the
Caribbean Meteorological Institute and
other regional organizations with technical
capabilities, including a local campus of the
University of the West Indies. Barbados has
achieved some success with commercial
dissemination of work on biogas digesters,
solar heaters and agro-industry. It has also
recently surveyed its research, researchers
and spending, and has baseline data gener-
ally absent elsewhere. The role played by
universal literacy, public awareness of sci-



Pollution in a closed island
ecosystem threatens
survival in a way that it
does not in Calcutta or
Mexico City.


ence and technology, and informal public-
private sector linkages has given Barbados
an edge. The question there may be
whether to continue with effective gradual
efforts orto attempt more rigorous and con-
centrated priorities and performance.
Jamaica has had a topsy-turvy experi-
ence with science and technology in recent
years, including an exodus of professionals
and technicians in the 1970s, and a drastic
switch from emphasis on controlling the
transfer of technology to encouraging
transfers. There have also been numerous
personnel changes in institutions responsi-
ble for science and technology. What has
continued is a basic and applied research
capability at the Jamaica campus of the
University of the West Indies, especially at
the School of Medicine and the Caribbean
Food and Nutrition Research Institute; a tra-
dition of government and private research
in agriculture; and some scattered energy,
fisheries, and other research and develop-
ment efforts.
A key problem is too many small uncoor-
dinated research projects which are under-
funded and understaffed. Jamaica also has
severe infrastructure and policy problems.
It must provide competitive salaries and
working environments, which probably
means regrouping researchers into larger
units. Cooperation between the public and
private sectors is essential if research is to
be adapted and diffused. Fiscal incentives
for research and development are a concern
in an economy crippled by lack of foreign
exchange. A national policy and plan may
be appropriate for Jamaica if the process is
open and participatory, and includes the
increasingly organized scientific
community.


Regional Efforts
These thumbnail sketches of national
efforts indicate the enormous range of sci-
ence and technology experiences and ap-
proaches within the region and the basic
obstacles to regional cooperation. Such co-
operation at present consists of efforts by
the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) na-
tions, University of the West Indies, Carib-
bean Meteorological Institute, Caribbean
Development Bank, Caribbean Examina-
tion Council, and a number of nongovern-
mental professional associations. At the
regional level, the Association of Caribbean
Universities (UNICA), founded in 1967, has
continued a low-profile program of con-
ferences, workshops and exchanges of in-
formation, and has discussed possible joint
research projects. Its members include uni-
versities in Colombia, Venezuela, Mexico
and the United States.
The Commonwealth Caribbean has at-
tempted several regional science and tech-
nology projects and proposed others.
Using US funding, the Caribbean Develop-
ment Bank and CARICOM Secretariat have
spent $7 million over five years on small-
island alternative energy research. The bank
also operates a technological consultancy
service for the Eastern Caribbean. The
Organization of American States has had
several small-scale subregional projects.
However, the CARICOM Secretariat lacks
the authority and the technical competence
to coordinate these efforts. Furthermore,
CARICOM appears to be too beset with ma-
jor political and economic problems to give
attention to science and technology
initiatives.
Instead the focus since 1979 has been at
the Caribbean-wide level with the initiative
coming from ECLA and UNESCO, and a
few individuals such as Dr. Dennis Irvine,
vice chancellor of the University of Guyana.
These efforts produced the intergovern-
mental Caribbean Council of Science and
Technology (CCST) in 1981, the widest Ca-
ribbean governmental grouping for science
ever established, except for the World War II
and postwar Caribbean Commission that
was confined to the colonial powers. How-
ever, lack of internal and external funding
has continued reliance on ECLA for secre-
tariat services, and member participation
and interest is markedly uneven. Like
UNICA, the CCST, with a diverse member-
ship, has settled for activities likely to afford
benefits to all even if at a low common
denominator.
Regional and subregional activity is
growing, but is still incipient. The extraordi-
nary range of bilateral and multilateral do-
nors results in duplication, fragmentation,
and too many donors chasing too few
qualified researchers. Regional and sub-
regional cooperation is easiest at the level of
information exchange; it is yet to be realized
at the level of joint research or support of


CAI?BBEAN FEVIEW/13









research centers except in the Common-
wealth Caribbean. The dilemma is thatwith-
out much greater regional cooperation,
many Caribbean countries will be shut out
of science and technology.

Research Priorities
Current priorities for research and develop-
ment spending throughout the Caribbean
show a striking convergence. Alternative
energy research is high on the list since the
Caribbean is more than 90 percent depen-
dent on imported oil to fuel its energy needs
(Trinidad and Tobago is the only oil and gas
producer). It is widely recognized that the
Caribbean possesses a wide array of energy
resources which may be exploited to pro-
vide some proportion of indigenous energy
needs. Renewable energy presents the
greatest opportunities. There is extensive
solar insolation; the winds tend to be strong
and predictable; good ocean thermal po-
tential exists; several countries have geo-
thermal and/or hydro resources; and the
biomass resource base is large and varied.
[See article on page 16.]
There has been relatively little actual en-
ergy research in the region, however. The
Center for Energy and Environment Re-
search in Puerto Rico has been actively
working on energy from sugarcane, solar air
conditioning, industrial hot water, ocean
thermal energy and other technologies. Be-
cause of changing US government pri-
orities, the center has had to curtail much of
its work. The Caribbean Development Bank
has funded a variety of research, including a
passive solar water heater program in Bar-
bados. It too has run into funding con-
straints on future energy research. The
Regional Energy Action Plan proposed by
the Organization of Eastern Caribbean
States is problematical due to lack of exter-
nal funding. The first round of energy re-
search thus risks being lost or dissipated if
donors lose interest or change priorities.

Glossary
Bagasse Plant residue (as of sugarcane)
after a product has been extracted.
Biogas A by-product of animal waste.
Biomass Plant materials and animal
waste used as a source of fuel.
Energy cane Sugarcane cultivated in
such a manner asto produce a high yield
of biomass as well as sugar content.
Fossil fuels Fuels derived from living
things (such as coal, oil and natural gas).
Geothermal Produced by utilizing the
heat of the earth's interior.
Hydropower Hydroelectric power; pro-
duction of electricity by water power.
Insolation Solar radiation.
Ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC)
Use of energy created by the change in
temperature when warm surface water is
replaced with cold (deeper) water.


In the areas of agriculture and forestry,
export crops such as sugar and sea-island
cotton have historically provided the most
effective examples of public and private-
sector research linkages. However, dis-
couraging markets and prices for tradi-
tional exports present new challenges to a
postcolonial research structure. Some ad-
vocate new research programs on nontradi-
tional export crops such as fruit trees,
emphasizing commercialization and mar-
keting. Others maintain that research
should focus on low-cost, labor-intensive
technologies at the disposition of small



Food is imported while
farm workers leave for
Kingston, Port-au-Prince,
Miami or New York.


farmers with little credit or formal educa-
tion. There are those who argue for agro-
industry research to adapt known dairy,
poultry, sheep and pig, animal fodder and
other conditions to Caribbean commercial
agriculture and food processing. The em-
phasis here is on agricultural extension,
mechanization and technology transfer,
with the goal of reducing current high
food imports.
The debate over research approaches
and goals divides governments, ministries
of agriculture, researchers, university fac-
ulties of agriculture and external donors. It
varies from country to country due to differ-
ent prevailing systems of land tenure, extent
of rural migration, and other factors. Unfor-
tunately research decisions will have to
choose between smallholders and agro-in-
dustry. A similar, though less painful deci-
sion is between research on commercial
forestry and fast-growing species for re-
forestation in peasant societies. Agro-in-
dustry research is less expensive because it
involves adapting and scaling down proven
technologies, while there is no on-the-shelf
technological package for tropical small
farmers.
The concept of labor-intensive, small-
scale technologies has received enthusias-
tic reception in much of the Caribbean.
Appropriate technology groups have
developed networks and information shar-
ing, as well as sponsoring centers, meet-
ings and demonstration sessions. Results
are mixed but have increased technology
awareness and skills among adults, es-
pecially in the smaller islands. Where local
interest merits, such activities may be ex-
tended to crafts, construction technologies,
materials recycling and small industries.
The environmental sciences are recent
arrivals in the Caribbean even though the


region consists of highly fragile human and
organic ecosystems. Pollution in a closed
island ecosystem threatens survival in a way
that it does not in Calcutta or Mexico City.
There has been growing demand for ap-
plied research on short-term problems of
harbor pollution, oil spills, coastal zone
management, beach and sand erosion, and
coastal and freshwater fish farming. Politi-
cal exigencies call for research to improve
fishing practices and yields, reduce imports
and generate employment. However, in-
creased interest in ecological research has
not been matched by a strengthening of
environmental science infrastructures.
Technicians are desperately scarce, making
fisheries and marine extension programs
unrealistic. Research centers lack critical
masses of researchers and adequate infor-
mation services. The possibility of regional
cooperation immediately runs into the
problem of the short-term needs of many
countries versus the long-term commit-
ment of building infrastructure.
Climatology and seismology are the two
disciplines in which the gap between re-
gional applied research and international
basic research interests has been bridged.
The Caribbean Meteorological Institute col-
lects weather data for the Eastern Carib-
bean and uses satellite data for forecasting
and hurricane and storm warnings. The co-
operation of this and other Caribbean na-
tional weather services with US agencies
has markedly improved regional forecast-
ing capabilities while adding to global data.
So far there has been very little formal
industrial research in the Caribbean. Tech-
nology transfer is largely unregulated ex-
cept for foreign exchange constraints. The
debate over industrial research involves the
range of choices, terms of technology trans-
fer, calls for regional or other advisory
mechanisms, the need for regional design,
and capabilities for new export industries
such as petrochemicals. There is also the
question of whether to foster industrial im-
port substitution rather than scaling down
technologies. Finally there is the need to
promote backwards linkages in assembly
plants in order to increase employment, tax
revenues and use of local materials.
Social science research has been one of
the bright spots in the Caribbean with more
than 50 years of solid work, much of it by
local scholars. Topics such as race and
class, kinship and gender, Africanisms in
the New World, the plantation economy and
emigration have been competently studied
over several decades. The research findings
have been widely diffused and constitute
part of the basic worldview of many Carib-
bean people. There are a number of social
science research centers in the region, nota-
bly the Institute of Social and Economic
Research of the University of the West In-
dies, which produce a steady stream of pub-
lications. While research continues on the


14/CAIBBEAN 11VIEW













































Tavera hydroelectric project dam, Dominican Republic.


topics first delineated before World War I1,
there are signs of new emphases: manage-
ment of public, private, nonprofit and coop-
erative enterprises; urban planning; land
use and coastal resource management. Re-
searchers should deal with tourism as a
multidisciplinary phenomenon requiring
highly sophisticated research rather than
superficial analysis. Longitudinal and
cross-cultural studies which treat the region
as an entity have yet to be realized.

Needs and Prospects
Most research and development efforts in
the Caribbean will continue to be carried
out at the national level. Although the poten-
tial for regional and subregional coopera-
tion is extensive, the prospects are less
promising. Projects of greatest interest to
larger, more advanced countries might be
of little or no interest to smaller countries
and vice versa. Bilateral cooperation, such
as took place between Puerto Rico and the
Dominican Republic or Cuba and Jamaica
in the 1970s, may be a possibility, but this
too is often unbalanced. Yet the con-
vergence of current research priorities and
spending patterns indicates that there are
areas in which regional projects can be
successful.
The majority of funding for research and
development projects is external, and the
donors have their own agendas and constit-


uencies. Obviously it is undesirable for do-
nors to dictate priorities or to coerce clients
into regional or subregional cooperation;
hence it is necessary that indigenous initia-
tives be increasingly funded from local re-
sources. Such funding should be struc-
tured to facilitate user-researcher linkages
and to break down the self-imposed segre-
gation of researchers from potential users.
For example, fiscal incentives may be used
to induce the tourist sector to fund solar
energy research or to encourage agro-in-
dustry to support university work. Public-
sector corporations such as electric utilities
should set aside research and development
funds for contracts with universities and the
private sector. These linkages should ex-
plicitly aim to strengthen local and regional
science and technology capabilities.
Human resources present a problem. For
two decades the Caribbean has been barely
able to maintain its number of researchers,
and in countries such as Haiti there are
fewer now than there were in 1960. Invest-
ment in science teaching at all levels is the
highest priority. Augmenting science edu-
cation with fairs, clubs, prizes, museums,
audiovisual materials, etc. is vital and lends
itself to regional cooperation. Science edu-
cation for adults is also important and
should be provided on the job, through
clubs, unions and other organizations, with
the goal of job-related knowledge and skills


rather than a vague awareness of the impor-
tance of science. Efforts must also be made
to keep scholars in the region. Studies have
shown that researchers emigrate because
of frustration with local working conditions
and salaries as well as foreign opportunities.
The Caribbean has the advantage of geo-
graphic proximity to major research centers
and possible on-line communications. Re-
searchers must be provided with frequent
access to major centers, on-line data bases,
overseas communications, and centers with
critical masses sufficient for stimulating ex-
changes. Handfuls of isolated researchers
scattered throughout the region are not
productive.
At present the Caribbean does not have
sufficient science and technology capability
to shape its future. It is possible, however,
that within a decade it could have the indig-
enous capacity to affect the areas of energy,
agriculture and ecology, and to modify the
mix of imports. Meanwhile energy is im-
ported and dependent on the vagaries of
world markets, prices and politics; food is
imported while farm workers leave for King-
ston, Port-au-Prince, Miami or New York;
ecological pressures increase, beaches
erode, forests are denuded, and finite natu-
ral resources dwindle. The development of
science and technology cannot solve all the
problems of the Caribbean, but it can pro-
vide the basis for seeking solutions. O


CAIBBEAN FEVIEw/15











Caribbean Energy Dependence

A 15-Year Prognosis

By Juan A. Bonnet, Jr. and Angel Calder6n-Cruz


Dependence on imported energy is a
critical problem in the Caribbean's
socioeconomic development. The
energy crunch of the 1970s had a devastat-
ing impact on most of the islands, to the
extent that it not only retarded development
but also caused economic disruption and
political instability. As recently as January
1985, we witnessed rioting in the streets of
Kingston, sparked by increased fuel prices
imposed by the Jamaican government. A
similar situation occurred in the Dominican
Republic almost simultaneously and for
analogous reasons.
An analysis of the energy situation in the
Caribbean in the 1980s reveals several fac-
tors which must be taken into account. First,
the Caribbean as a region is more than 90
percent dependent on imported oil to meet
its energy needs. Only one nation, Trinidad
and Tobago, is a net exporter of oil; and only
two others, Barbados and St. Vincent, pro-
duce fossil fuels. Fewer than 10 of the more
than 50 inhabited islands of the archipelago
have the potential for hydropower. Nuclear
power is feasible only in the larger islands:
Cuba already has two Soviet-built 440 MWe
reactors under construction. Puerto Rico
considered the nuclear power option in the
1970s but discarded it, more for policy than
technical reasons. Solar energy in its many
forms-direct solar, wind, biomass, biogas,
and ocean thermal-offers some hope.
Size is an important consideration bear-
ing both on energy production and de-
mand. Many of the small islands have low
commercial energy demands. In Montser-
rat, for example, demand is only 9 thousand
tons coal equivalent (ttce), or 1,000 kg coal
equivalent per capital. Haiti's demand is 226
ttce, or 54 kg per capital. Cuba and Puerto
Rico are the region's largest energy con-
sumers at 13,050 ttce (1297 kg per capital)
and 12,064 ttce (3507 kg per capital) re-
spectively. Installed electric capacity ranges
from a low of 14 MWe in St. Kitts-Nevis to a
high of 4290 MWe in Puerto Rico. Thus

Juan A. Bonnet, Jr. is director of the University
of Puerto Rico's Center for Energy and
Environment Research. Angel Calder6n-Cruz
is head of the Planning and Development Of-
fice of the same institution.


Windmill, Antigua.
economies of scale offered by large electric
generating plants do not apply in the Carib-
bean-one of the main reasons for the high
cost of electricity there. Furthermore, elec-
trical transmission and distribution systems
are inadequate in most islands.

Major Trends
The Caribbean will continue to depend on
oil as its major source of energy during the
1980s. Neither time nor financial resources
are available to switch from oil to other en-
ergy sources in this century. Consequently
current oil supplies will have to be improved
and their reliability increased. Yet Caribbean
oil refineries have been experiencing diffi-
culties in recent years. Puerto Ricds Com-
monwealth Oil closed down, as did Exxon's
Lago refinery on Aruba [see page 21]; Shell
may cease its refining operations in
Curagao.
Coal is rapidly evolving as a viable energy
alternative. The Dominican Republic is
building coal plants, and cement plants in
Puerto Rico have switched from oil to coal.
These two countries are also considering
coal/water slurries as alternatives to pe-
troleum. We should not forget, however,
that coal is also an imported energy source.
Another trend which must be taken into
account is cogeneration. There is a growing
tendency among new industries to install


their own electric generating capacities
since they can do so at lower cost than the
government can provide them with elec-
tricity. There are cogeneration projects
using bagasse in Jamaica, Belize, the Do-
minican Republic and Puerto Rico.
The utilization of solar energy, a "soft"
technology, has become an observable
trend. There are already solar programs
sponsored by the Caribbean Development
Bank. More than 60 solar demonstration
projects are currently operating in the is-
lands, the majority in the Dominican Re-
public, Jamaica, Puerto Rico and Barbados.
Some of these have been very successful;
others have not.
Wind is rapidly being developed as an
energy alternative with great potential in the
region. There are more than 20 wind gener-
ator projects in operation, many of them
working very well.
The utilization of biomass offers one of
the greatest potentials for the Caribbean.
The University of Puerto Rico's Center for
Energy and Environment Research (CEER)
developed the "energy cane" as an alterna-
tive to sugarcane in order to increase pro-
ductivity. Yields on the order of 110 tons per
acre of energy cane have been obtained
experimentally. CEER is completing a bio-
mass commercialization feasibility study
using the facilities of the closed Cam-
balache sugar mill in Arecibo for the pro-
duction of sugar and molasses as well as
energy. In Jamaica, a USAID-sponsored
project for growing energy cane is under
way. With energy cane, land can be used for
planting both energy and foodstocks since
it can produce sugar, molasses and
bagasse.
An important trend is the developing po-
tential for producing energy from the ocean.
Ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC)
could be one of the most effective genera-
tors of energy for the region. The Caribbean
Sea has the potential to produce more than
182 billion kilowatt-hours per year from
ocean thermal energy conversion-more
than four times the total energy consump-
tion of the entire Caribbean region; and an
OTEC plant could very well supply the total
energy requirements of a small island.
There are excellent OTEC sites in Jamaica,


16/CAlBBEAN PVIeEW

























Puerto Rico, the Netherlands Antilles, St.
Kitts and elsewhere.
Finally, there is the use of solar thermal
devices for heating water, steam production
or air conditioning. Some of the islands
have their own manufacturers of solar water
heaters, and there are several demonstra-
tion projects. Puerto Rico has more than 25
thousand solar water heaters in operation.
Several factors will exacerbate energy
problems in the Caribbean in the 1980s
and 90s. First is the growth in population. In
1980 the population of the insular Carib-
bean was estimated at 30 million. If the cur-
rent annual growth rate of about 1.8 percent
holds, the population will be about 42 mil-
lion in the year 2000. Urbanization is also
increasing, currently at a rate of just under 1
percent per year. It has been estimated that
the typical Caribbean urban dweller con-
sumes at least 10 times more conventional
energy than his rural counterpart. Further-
more, there is a tendency to increase and
improve transportation systems in the is-
lands, which will naturally result in greater
energy consumption.
Modernization and industrialization,
some of it stimulated by the Caribbean
Basin Initiative, will also increase energy de-
mand. We have estimated probable de-
mand for the year 2000 and derived three
possibilities. The first is a low-growth sce-
nario. If energy demand in the Caribbean
increases at the same rate as it did in
the 1970s, 2.4 percent per year, energy
demand in the year 2000 will be 80 million
tons coal equivalent (mtce), an increase
from 50 mtce in 1980. This figure is
probably too low.
The second possibility is a high-growth
scenario. Energy demand increased at the
rate of 7.1 percent during the 1960s. If it
increases at the same rate through the year
2000, demand will be on the order of 200
mtce. This figure is probably too high,
partly because the Caribbean has begun
learning the lessons of energy efficiency
and conservation. There is also likely to be
slower growth in the energy-consuming
"smoke stack" industries.
The third scenario is the one that has
been suggested as the probable rate of in-
crease for Latin America. It calls for demand


to grow at the rate of 5.2 percent per year,
creating a demand of just under 140 mtce
in the year 2000. This figure is probably
closer to the mark.
The current price of oil in the world mar-
ket is soft. It is difficult to predict the proba-
ble price of oil five or 10, much less 15 years
from now. The US Department of Energy
has estimated that by 1995 the price of oil
will be $50 per barrel. For purposes of com-
parison, two lower prices per barrel may be
considered: $13.36 and $32.88, the posted
prices of Venezuelan crude in 1970 and
1980 respectively.
What does this mean in terms of impact
on Caribbean economies? Let us assume
that the gross domestic product (GDP) of
the insular Caribbean will rise from $48
billion in 1980 to $77 billion in 2000. Let us
assume further that oil will continue to
make up 90 percent of energy consump-
tion. The Caribbean oil bill represented 11
percent of GDP in 1980. If the high-de-
mand, high-price scenario occurs, it will re-
quire 54 percent of GDPto purchase that oil.
In only the medium and low-growth sce-
narios, where oil is priced at the 1970 figure,
does the GDP ratio fall below 11 percent. In
the more probable medium-growth sce-
nario, oil at $50 per barrel will consume 38
percent of GDP and at $32 per barrel, 25
percent.

Energy Planning
By the end of this century, Caribbean energy
needs will probably more than double in
many of the islands, if not in the region as a
whole. It is clear that energy planning is an
important first step in promoting develop-
ment. The action plan for the Caribbean
prepared by the United Nations Environ-
mental Program in 1980 recommended
three energy priorities: (1) to promote more
cooperation and technical assistance for
developing energy accounting systems, in-
cluding data base and energy models; (2) to
reinforce integrated nonconventional en-
ergy activities and fuel technology; (3) to
develop a cooperative program for waste
disposal, recycling and energy generation.
Another planning effort is CARICOM's re-
gional energy plan drafted in 1983, but still
pending implementation.


It is generally acknowledged that univer-
sities and research institutions can make
significant contributions in the search for
solutions to Caribbean energy problems. In
1981-83, the University of Puerto Rico's
CEER carried out a project funded by the
Exxon Educational Foundation, the Na-
tional Science Foundation and the Associa-
tion of Caribbean Universities and Research
Institutes (UNICA) to determine what Carib-
bean universities could do to help solve re-
gional energy problems. One of the most
important recommendations was the com-
pilation and publication of an urgently
needed directory of Caribbean human and
institutional resources.
Other major recommendations were es-
tablishment of a Caribbean research en-
dowment fund for energy; implementation
of regional faculty interchange programs;
development and/or improvement of cur-
ricula on energy conversion and alternative
sources of energy, and in energy systems
design and performance; involvement of
universities in collection of solar insolation
and wind measurement data; and establish-
ment of audit programs. Universities could
also assist by setting up programs that
would help in the implementation of energy
conservation measures. Finally, Caribbean
universities should follow the performance
of energy demonstration projects in the
region.
Caribbean governments and the private
sector must approach the energy problem
jointly and with a sense of urgency. To for-
mulate a viable regional energy planning
scheme, it is necessary to identify the re-
quirements of individual countries as well
as the regional and external financial,
human and institutional resources needed
to undertake the task of implementation. If
the current crisis is to stop short of becom-
ing a disaster, Caribbean national and re-
gional development plans must include
among the top priorities adequate controls
on consumption and provisions for the de-
velopment and utilization of alternative en-
ergy sources such as solar and wind energy,
biomass, geothermal, and ocean thermal
energy conversion. This is one of the great
challenges facing the Caribbean today and
in the immediate future. ]


CAI?BBEAN FVI /17










Future Aruba

Can It Make It Alone?

By George J. Cvejanovich


Esso Beach and Lago Oil Refinery, Aruba.
he island of Aruba, one of the six
islands comprising the Netherlands
Antilles, may be the Caribbean's next
independent ministate. The constitutional
future of the Netherlands Antilles has been a
major topic of discussion among Aruba, the
Antilles and the Netherlands since the early
1970s. A series of negotiations and con-
ferences on the subject between 1980 and
1983 decided that Aruba would become
independent in 1996, following a ten-year
transition period during which it would
gradually leave the Antillean federation.
However, further movement in the constitu-
tional area has been delayed by the eco-
nomic crisis confronting Aruba and
Curagao. The major pillars of the economy
(oil refining, offshore banking and tourism)
have recently suffered serious, if not perma-
nent, setbacks.
The independence movement in Aruba
technically began in the mid-1970s, with
the emergence of a new, pro-independence
majority party. However, its origin is rooted
in an earlier separatist movement which be-
gan in the 1930s. In many respects, the
current development is still more of a sepa-
ratist movement than an independence
movement. Unfortunately, the non-Aruban
George J. Cvejanovich teaches government at
Houston Community College. This article
draws on his dissertation, "Dependence and
Development in Aruba: Host State-Foreign
Capital Bargaining" (University of Texas,
Austin).


actors involved in the constitutional nego-
tiations (the Netherlands and Curagao)
have presented Aruba with only two op-
tions: become independent or remain part
of the Netherlands Antillean federation.

A History of Tension
Prior to 1937, the Netherlands Antilles were
a crown colony of Holland known as the
colony of Curacao. Aruba's chief official was
a lieutenant governor (gezaghebber), fully
accountable to the governor in Curagao. His
power was limited, and it was not until 1945
that the gezaghebber could spend up to
300 fis (approximately $150) without the
approval of the governor. Aruba was manip-
ulated by the governor and departmental
heads in Curagao.
In 1930, for the first time, representatives
of the Colonial Council in Curacao went to
Aruba to investigate the island's needs. The
Hague had also directed the council to pre-
pare the groundwork for limited decentral-
ization. In 1931, Aruba's district council,
which advised thegezaghebber, petitioned
The Hague to include an article in the forth-
coming constitution which would grant
Aruba increased autonomy with respect to
Curacao. One signer of that petition, Henny
Eman (1887-1957), later founded an
Aruban political party and advocated that
Aruba secede from the Netherlands Antilles
but maintain close and direct ties with the
Netherlands.
The revised constitution that became


effective in 1937 dissolved the Colonial
Council and replaced it with a parliament, or
Staten. However, the power of the governor
and The Hague remained largely un-
touched. Suffrage was limited. The Staten
consisted of 15 members, five of which
were appointed by the governor. The 10
remaining members were elected by pro-
portional representation from the islands as
follows: six from Curagao, two from Aruba,
one from Bonaire, and one from the Wind-
ward Islands (Saba, St. Maarten and St. Eu-
statius). For the first time, Aruba had a
permanent representative in the govern-
ment, indicating that the 1931 petition had
not been totally unheeded.
The first political party in the Antilles, the
Catholic Peoples' Party (Katholiek Volkspar-
tij, KVP) was formed in both Aruba and
Curagao in 1936, and the KVP won Aruba's
two Staten seats in 1937. In the 1941
Staten elections, Henny Eman ran as an
independent and won Aruba's two seats.
Eman was reelected in 1945, but the KVP
also won a seat.
Eman's campaign of separaci6n for
Aruba obviously attracted a number of
voters. His platform advocated that Aruba
and Curacao have the same number of
seats in the Staten (despite the fact that
Curagads population was almost twice as
large as Aruba's). Eman achieved this goal
in time for the 1949 election: both islands
now had eight seats. In those elections, the
first with universal suffrage, Eman's new


18/CAIBBEAN IeVIEW

































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party, the Aruban People's Party (Arubaanse
Volkspartij, AVP) won five of the eight seats.
Although Eman'sseparaci6n movement
was based on the long-standing historical
tension between Aruba and Curagao, it was
the transformation of the Aruban economy
after the mid-1930s which gave the move-
ment credibility. With the establishment of
the Exxon oil refinery, Aruba was financially
independent of Curagao for the first time.
The separaci6n movement, however,
proved to be short-lived.
By 1950 the final constitutional structure
for the Netherlands Antilles was determined
as a result of several conferences on decolo-
nization. First the Netherlands Antilles as a
federation were to be self-governing in all
matters except foreign and defense policy.
On those matters the Antilles were, with
Suriname and the Netherlands, equal part-
ners in the "Kingdom of the Netherlands."
The central government of the Antilles was
located in Cura:ao, and the Staten was the
principal governing body. Each island also
now had an island council to deal with local
affairs. Although the central government
had limited powers, there was no provision
in the constitution for any island to leave the
federation and become a separate partner
in the kingdom. Finally, the allocation of
Staten seats was again revised, reflecting
the population distribution; Curacao re-
ceived 12 seats and Aruba eight.
The 1950 election represented the begin-
ning of the end of Eman's separatist move-


ment and of AVP's status as the majority
party. One of the cofounders of AVP,
Juancho Irausquin, disagreed with Eman
over the best way to insure Aruba's auton-
omy and formed a new party, the Aruban
Patriotic party (Partido Patri6tico Arubano,
PPA). In the election, AVP won four seats,
PPA won two, and other minor parties took
the remaining two. The decline of the AVP
was also evident in the first island council
election in 1951, when both AVP and PPA
won eight of the 21 seats. By the time of the
1955 election, AVP's strength had so de-
clined that it won only three seats. PPA's win
of 15 seats in that election has never been
beaten by any party in Aruba or Curacao.
The decline of the AVP resulted from sev-
eral factors. With the new constitution in
effect and Aruba's island council flounder-
ing, most voters felt that the struggle for
autonomy was over. The fact that Eman
helped form the central government coali-
tion after the 1950 election did little to sup-
port his view that Curacao was still a threat.
Eman's inability to prevent the 12-8 dis-
tribution of Staten seats, as well as his pro-
management position during a major strike
at the refinery in 1951, also cost him sup-
port. Perhaps most important was the im-
pact of the refinery on Aruba's social
structure. Although the oil refinery provided
Aruba with the financial independence nec-
essary to demand greater autonomy, it also
had a counterveiling effect on separaci6n.
A large number of workers with Dutch cit-


izenship came to Aruba from other islands
of the Netherlands Antilles and Suriname to
work in the refinery. In 1950, 45 percent of
Aruba's electorate had not been born in
Aruba. Eman's separaci6n and rhetoric
("Aruba for Arubans") was viewed as a
threat by this group. Consequently the PPA,
which took a more moderate position on
the autonomy question, won the support of
non-Arubans.
With the emergence of the PPA as Aruba's
majority party, the separatism issue faded.
The PPA joined with the Democratic Party
(DP) in Curacao, and the two formed the
governing coalition from 1954 to 1973.
The AVP had a brief revival in 1967 when,
with the assistance of several minor parties,
it took control of the island council for a
few years.

A New Stage
The DP-PPA government, which was the tar-
get of the 1969 labor and racial rioting in
Curagao resulting from long-standing racial
and labor conflict on that island, was forced
to resign. In the aftermath, two leftist black
power parties emerged in Curagao: the La-
bor and Liberation Front (Frente Obrero y
Liberaci6n, FOL) and the New Antillean
Movement (Movimiento Antiyas Nobo,
MAN). Although the DP and PPA did well
enough in the 1969 elections to be able to
form a new government with the help of
FOL, Antillean politics were undergoing a
fundamental change.


CARfBBEAN PeICE /19









The reaction to the riots in The Hague
was to begin discussions about the eventual
complete independence of the Netherlands
Antilles. Both the quasi-socialist Nether-
lands government and Dutch public opin-
ion were uncomfortable with having to send
marines to Curagao to maintain order. Dis-
cussions were already underway regarding
Suriname's independence, and the Antilles
were added to the agenda. One Hague par-
liamentarian even suggested that the Antil-
les be given their independence immedi-
ately, via an "airmail letter."
The reaction in Aruba to the events in
Curagao was one of shock. Aruban society
did not have racial conflict to the extent that
Curacao did. Unlike Curacao, whose popu-
lation was largely black as a result of its
having been a slave center, Aruba's antece-
dents were largely Arawak Indian. Many
Arubans, especially in rural areas, held ra-
cist attitudes toward Curagao. Arubans were
most concerned about their position in an
independent Antilles, especially if the presi-
dential one-person/one-vote system advo-
cated by Curacao were implemented. The
combination of these factors inevitably re-
sulted in the rebirth of the separatist move-
ment in Aruba.
A young activist group within the AVR
under the leadership of Betico Croes, left
that party and formed the People's Electoral
Movement (Movimiento Electoral di
Pueblo, MEP). The party's platform, known
as status apart, argued that Aruba should
leave the Antillean federation and become a
separate partner in the Kingdom of the
Netherlands. Aruba could simply take the
place of Suriname in the charter. Croes's
status aparte idea was essentially the same
as Eman's earlier separaci6n.
In the party's first election in 1971, it won
a third of the island council seats. With the
1973 Staten election, MEP had become
Aruba's majority party and joined with the
National People's Party in Curacao to form
the new government. The DP-PPA central
government coalition which began in 1954
was finally ousted from power. The dra-
matic emergence of MEP as Aruba's major-
ity party was due to the popularity of Croes
and status aparte.
MEP proved a difficult coalition partner,
being committed to the elimination of the
central government's authority over Aruba;
and by 1976 the PPA replaced it in the coali-
tion. However MEP continued to win a ma-
jority of Staten and island council seats in
subsequent elections, and with that man-
date Croes pushed harder forstatus apart.
Delegations were sent to various countries
of the region, including Cuba, to get sup-
port. The Hague and the Antillean govern-
ment objected to these trips on the grounds
that such missions were the jurisdiction of
the kingdom or central government. The
Hague refused to discuss status aparte
with Croes for the same reason.


Croes responded with a general strike in
1977 and threatened a unilateral declaration
of independence. The Hague eventually
agreed to discuss Aruba's future, but ruled
out the possibility of status apart. Aruba
could become independent on its own or
with the rest of the Antilles. The Netherlands
was determined to rid itself of all colonies. Of
course The Hague preferred that the islands
stay together and attempted to show that an
independent Aruba was not viable.
Croes now found himself in the difficult
position of having to convince his constitu-
ency that independence was a better ulti-
mate goal than status aparte, and that an



Aruba's complaint is with
Curacao, not with the
Netherlands.


independent Aruba could be viable. The
other political parties in Aruba, particularly
AVR which was being revitalized by Eman's
grandson, took advantage of MEP's new
direction and challenged the viability ques-
tion. AVP put the issue in the most basic
terms: Were Arubans willing to give up their
Dutch passports? This issue won the AVP
new support.
Croes continued to campaign for inde-
pendence but stressed that the necessary
groundwork be implemented first. Aruba
would not allow itself to be pushed un-
prepared into independence. The example
of Suriname was often cited as what not to
do. Consequently, Croes offered the con-
cept of an associated state (Aruba would
maintain commonwealth ties with the
Netherlands) as the appropriate form of in-
dependence. But many saw little difference
between this and status aparte.
Following the 1979Staten election, MEP
and MAN formed the central government
coalition. However MEP's participation in
the government, like that of 1973-1975,
was tenuous. It withdrew from the coalition
in 1981, leaving Aruba with no representa-
tion in the central government. The 1982
election did not change the relative strength
of the various parties; thus forming a new
coalition was difficult. Eventually MAN, NVR
AVP and PPA formed a government. This
coalition lasted until 1984, when it was
replaced by the current coalition of NVP
and MEP
Between 1980 and 1983, a series of con-
ferences (the Kingdom Working Group, the
Round Table Conference, and Commission
of Seven) were held to discuss the Aruba
question. The final agreement was that
Aruba will become independent in 1996
after a ten-year transition period of status
aparte beginning in 1986. The agreement
was viewed by many as a major victory for


Croes and MEP The Hague had previously
refused to accept status aparte, even as a
transition phase, for fear that it would be-
come permanent. The agreement was also
a victory for The Hague, for it now had a
target date for the independence of the rest
of the Netherlands Antilles.
A number of details regarding the imple-
mentation of the agreement have yet to be
resolved. Further movement in this area has
been delayed by an economic decline in the
Antilles. In 1983, the devaluation of the Ven-
ezuelan bolivar seriously hurt tourism, es-
pecially in Curacao. Also that year the
Exxon refinery in Aruba announced that it
was having difficulty negotiating a crude
supply contract with Venezuela. By the end
of 1984, Exxon announced that the refinery,
which accounted for 40 percent of Aruba's
GNP would cease operations. The offshore
banking sector, responsible for 30 percent
of the central government's tax revenue, was
seriously hurt by changes in US tax law.
Finally, the Shell refinery in Curagao may
also be closed this year.

Aruban's Attitudes
Given the history of the independence
movement, an important question for many
is whether Arubans really support indepen-
dence; or do they only support status
aparte? A survey was conducted in Novem-
ber-December 1982, consisting of a ques-
tionnaire mailed to a random sample of
1,000 voters. Although only 36 percent of
the questionnaires were returned, those that
were constituted a representative sample of
the overall population.
Three of the survey questions related di-
rectly to Arubans' attitudes toward indepen-
dence. The first question asked what the
final constitutional structure for Aruba
should be. The five choices were: 1) com-
plete independence; 2) associated state-
ties with Holland based on international law;
3) status aparte-ties with Holland based
on constitutional law; 4) equal partnership
with Curacao in an Antillean state; 5) part of
an Antillean state in which the president is
elected bythe one-person/one-vote system.
The results indicated some support for in-
dependence (12 percent), especially if we
include "associated state" in this category
(26 percent); but substantial support for
status aparte (52 percent). Few Arubans
(10 percent) wanted to be part of an Antil-
lean state.
The second question asked what kind of
relationship Aruba should have with Cura-
gao. The majority of Arubans (56 percent)
wanted the islands to be independent of one
another. Those who supported some de-
gree of cooperation were divided into two
groups: 22 percent favored limited coopera-
tion and 20 percent strong cooperation.
Since limited cooperation (in foreign and
defense policy) is not incompatible with
Continued on page 42


20/CAIBBEAN FEVIW







Endangering Friendships


In many respects, the Netherlands Antilles
represents what US foreign policy would like
to see in all of the Caribbean basin. It has a
pluralistic political system: elections are
meaningful; and the economy is guided by
the dictates of capitalism. Furthermore. the
governments have been pro-Western and
friendly to the United States and its multina-
tional corporations. a situation which could
change in the future.
For the Antilles. the multinational corpo-
ration has been welcome, as it provides em-
ployment and revenue. However, early in
1984 the US Congress repealed a tax law
that had provided the main incentive for
American corporations to establish them-
selves in the islands. The Internal Revenue
Service had pushed hard for this. arguing
that millions of dollars left the United States
untaxed.
The scrapping of this 30 percent with-
holding tax. which will become effective in
1986. was a major blow to the Netherlands
Antilles' economy, as the fees paid by US
companies have provided close to 17 per-
cent of its income. As Harold Henriquez. the
Netherlands Antilles' minister plenipotenti-
ary in Washington, D.C. stated: "The repeal
of the 30 percent withholding tax will have a
devastating effect on the Netherlands' Antil-
les' economy.... The Foreign exchange in-
come we get from US subsidiaries is of



The Lago Relinery's forest of chimney
stacks no longer belches smoke. There are
no flames or fumes. After 60 years, the
Aruba refinery that bragged it refined one
out of every 16 barrels of aircraft fuel used
by the Allied Forces in World War II. and was
the target of a German torpedo, has closed
down for good. For Arubans it is the end of
an era.
There is no area in the world today where
the glut in oil refining capacity has had as
great an impact as in the Netherlands Antil-
les islands of Aruba and Curacao. The crisis
is compounded by the fact that the other
mainstays of the islands' economies-off-
shore finance, tourism and commerce-
are also in trouble. The devaluation of the
Venezuelan bol, var in early 1983 cut tour-
ism by 70 percent. and the US Congresss
repeal of the 30 percent withholding tax
incentive will add to the islands' finan-
cial woes.
As an austerity measure to help offset the
loss of 40 percent of its income with Lagos
closing, Aruba cut the salaries of its govern-
ment employees by 10 percent. This move
caused a strike by civil servants protesting
the pay cut and calling for an accounting of
300 million florins of government money
Leaders of three unions said they repre-
sented 3.000 public servants, including
teachers. They had a counterproposal


extreme importance to us, because we im-
port almost everything, including food."
The impact of the situation was made even
harsher when new regulations allowed US
banks to create international banking facili-
ties in US territory to compete with offshore
banking centers for foreign deposits.
Netherlands Antilles' imports and ex-
ports are dominated by the United States,
followed closely by Venezuela. Since 1977.
exports to the United States rose from a
little over 1.5 billion to 52.6 billion in 1983.
Imports in the same period more than dou-
bled from s236.3 million to 5608.5 million.
The United States controls 58.3 percent of
all exports and 7.4 percent of all imports.
compared to the Netherlands' 1 percent and
1.4 percent respectively. Venezuela domi-
nates imports with 57.4 percent, most of
which is oil and food.
The work force in the Netherlands Antilles
is unionized, and wages are highwhen com-
pared with the rest of the region. This has
been another negative factor in promoting
the Dutch islands as an attractive place to
do business. Consequently many busi-
nesses have turned away from the Nether-
lands Antilles and gone to Haiti, Jamaica,
the Dominican Republic or Mexico, where
labor is cheaper and, in most cases, less
organized.
Part of the problem confronting the


Clouds over Aruba

which. they claimed, would save the island
more money: a reduction from six to four
commissioners: cutting government lead-
ers' expenses and compensation to attend
meetings. elimination of five-twelfths of
employee vacation pay; downgrading pay-
ment ol overtime hours on free days; reduc-
tion of the number of hours street lights are
on: recuperation of 15.6 million florins in
back taxes owed the government.
Both the Lago refinery in Aruba and the
Shell refinery in Curacao got their start early'
in the 20th century, when oil was discovered
around the lake of Maracaibo and deep-
water ports were needed. The two Dutch
islands just off the coast of Venezuela had
perfect harbors. From its opening in the
1920s until its closing. Lago had refined
more than 6.5 billion barrels of crude Dur-
ing the postwar boom years. it employed
8.300 people. The company needed 600
workers just to manage maintenance and
repair of over 600 houses, bachelor quar-
ters. a hospital. dining halls. clubs, com-
missaries and the Lago sports park. During
its early days, Lago had been referred to as
"the colony."
Most of the important jobs were filled by
Americans, and workers from throughout
the Eastern Caribbean also found jobs
there. Throughout the years. Lago helped to
prepare professionals from Aruba and other


Netherlands Antilles is an artificially high
standard ol living. Antilleans are eligible for
Dutch social benefits. The process of inject-
ing metropolitan funds into the islands up-
graded the standard of living with the intent
of equalizing the Caribbean environment to
that of Europe. Unions were able to demand
wages similar to their European counter-
parts and. in general. Antilleans entered the
age of rising expectations. Offshore bank-
ing. a small and protected manufacturing
sector, the oil industry and tourism, supple-
mented by Dutch aid. initially helped meet
some of these expectations.
The alternatives now for the Netherlands
Antilles are to lower the relatively high stan-
dard of living and to search for new indus-
tries. The economic blows ol the last year
have shaken the islands and caused consid-
erable introspection. Currently the govern-
ment is searching for a new sector to help
replace lost income. The actions of the
United States in repealing the withholding
tax and competing with offshore banking
exacerbates the problems caused by refin-
ery closings and reduced tourism. They
negate American good ill in the eyes of the
Netherlands Antilles and strike a blow to the
foundations for creating stable democratic
capitalistic systems in the region.
-ScorT B. MACDC'NALD
Haritord. Connecticut


islands. iPrime Minister Herbert Blaise of
Grenada got his start at Lago. and Sir Eric
Gairy also worked there. Maurice Bishop's
parents worked for Lago. and Bishop was
born on Aruba.) As the Aruban community
progressed to the point that it could provide
the needed services, Lago switched from
being a completely self-sufficient entity to
purchasing contract services.
In preparing for the March 31 closing.
Exxon had set aside over 5350.000 to find
jobs for many of its professionals. But with
the worldwide oil woes, jobs in this industry
are not easily found. Few have been suc-
cessful in getting placements in other refin-
eries despite the advertising on their behalf
by Exxon in trade publications.
The Antillen Review wrote under the
heading The morning after Lago A need
to sober up but not to despair Aruba faces
a host of financial and social problems aris-
ing from the inevitable loss of income and
the just as inevitable steep rise in unem-
ployment There is no escaping the truth
that Lago's closure implies difficult and hard
years ahead." Ironically. just a year ago a
calypso was commissioned by Exxon to cel-
ebrate Lago's 60th birthday. The song didn't
have time to become a hit before the refin-
ery's closing was announced
-BERNARD DIEDERICH
Aliami. Florida


CA1?BBEAN PTEVIe 21










Paradise Lost?

Rediscovering Tradition in Aruba

By Sam Cole


he original inhabitants of Aruba were
Arawak Indians, and a marked Indian
cultural heritage still survives among
some 20-25 percent of the island's diverse
population of 60,000. In many respects the
history of Indian communities in Aruba has
been less traumatic than elsewhere; they
have shared in the wealth created by the
major oil refinery and benefited from
Dutch-inspired welfare systems. Despite
this, however, the Indian population of the
island experiences the marginalization
common to other such communities.
While the refinery brought wealth, it also
wrought a profound shift in the process of
social integration that was underway on
Aruba, displacing much of the traditional
way of life. With the imminent closing of the
refinery, the island now faces the prospect
of a substantial decline in wealth; with the
onset of independence, it is not obvious that
distributional norms will or can be main-
tained. There is doubt also whether the past
can be regained. Indeed, as with other so-
cieties that have enjoyed brief moments of
glory, the age of the refinery may be viewed
in the future as Aruba's "paradise lost." Un-
fortunately this paradise, with its hierarchi-
cal and patronizing structures so charac-
teristic of colonial and neocolonial societies,
has compromised many Arubans, leaving
them in limbo between the old and the new.
In a metaphorical sense, they are confined
in the prison of another culture.
Aruba is now faced with the loss of a
major portion of its income and, during the
next decade, the prospect of full indepen-
dence from Holland. Despite the obvious
difficulties this formidable combination of
events might present, the removal of the
major carriers of colonizing culture may en-
able traditional values to play a greater role
in the island's future development. Just as


Sam Cole, professor of environmental design
at the State University of New York at Buffalo,
lived in Aruba from 1981-83 while in charge of
preparing a medium and long-term economic
plan for the island. This article is an abridged
version of a conference paper and draws on a
forthcoming book, Exxon and Aruba-Crisis
and Culture in Economic Development.


the departure of the refinery may relieve
some of the cultural pressure on the com-
munity, it may also leave an economic
space within which local systems of produc-
tion can be further developed.

Colonial Antecedents
From a colonialists point of view, Aruba was
an uninspiring proposition. Arid, and with
unreliable rainfall, the island was little used
except by Indians paddling from the main-
land to fish and escape other warring Indi-
ans; and later by Spanish warships as a free-
ranging ranch to keep a few cattle and
goats, by pirates as a haven from authority,
and finally by the Dutch, for whom the is-
land was in effect a penal colony for mis-
creants from Curacao. The latter was always
the more important colony and also the
center of Dutch slave trading in the Carib-
bean. But from the Indians' point of view, all
these factors added up to one thing: they
survived, some until the mid-19th century
when slavery was finally abolished in the
Dutch colonies, and today around
10-15,000 of the Aruba community can be
said to have an Indian heritage.
Dutch and other Europeans arriving as
traders and small plantation owners
brought African slaves to Aruba. Although
the extent of slavery there was considerably
less than in most other islands of the Carib-
bean, the manner in which these groups
integrated was crucial to the future social
and economic situation of the Indians. At
the time of emancipation, land was dis-
tributed, but only to people born free-
mainly Indians. Indeed if there are signifi-
cant differences today in the situation of the
modern Indo-Aruban, they may be best ex-
plained by the land tenure system at and
after emancipation, and by the situation of
the Afro-Arubans. By the time African
slavery in Aruba began, a fair degree of
procreation between whites and Indians
had taken place and, with this, a permanent
kinship bonding.
After emancipation in 1864 some further
integration occurred, and the last pure Indi-
ans disappeared. Relatively wealthy political
refugees from the mainland arriving in the
late 19th century became the final major


component of the so-called "real Arubans"
-the inhabitants prior to the arrival of the
oil refinery. Although this group exhibited
some of the characteristics of an emerging
nation, the process of change was slow. The
economic organization consisted of Euro-
pean merchants with a workforce of African
freemen, small estanzias with a retinue of
Indians, and numerous peasant home-
steads-in other words, most groups con-
tinuing in their previous occupations.
Significantly for the future development of
the Indians, they continued to play less
organized or structured roles in this cultural
division of labor, clearly different from work-
ers from a rigid plantation or European tra-
dition, who over the years have come to
make up the majority of Aruba's population.
As the overall economic climate in Aruba
became increasingly bad due to droughts, a
short gold rush, and the ever-increasing
goat population which prevented revegeta-
tion, the subsistence agriculture of the is-
land suffered. Consequently, some 50
percent of the male labor force turned to
migrant work on farms and mines on the
mainland and on the sugar plantations of
Cuba. The women were left behind to till the
land, look after the homesteads and raise
the children.

From Subsistence to Affluence
The arrival of the Lago oil refinery (later part
of Exxon) in the late 1920s dramatically
changed the situation of the Indo-Arubans.
According to historian Johannes Hartog,
"the Aruban pattern of life, hitherto provid-
ing a few simple means of subsistence
yielding a meager income, all at once had to
give way to a much more rigid one, outlined
by fixed wages and provisions that were to
affect both employers and government."
The demand for labor far exceeded the
number and skill of the local labor force,
and the American-owned company re-
cruited in the British West Indies and the
English-speaking Windward Islands of the
Netherlands Antilles. Compared to these
new workers, who were the "cream of the
Caribbean" labor force, the Papiamentu-
speaking Arubans, and especially the Indi-
ans, were disadvantaged in several re-


22/CABBeAN REVIEW



























aspects, and they had many problems
integrating into the new work culture. This
situation affected the Dutch-speaking
Arubans also; but as the economy ex-
panded to cope with the growing popula-
tion of the island, they secured jobs in
administration, commerce, and a smaller
oil terminal (which later closed).
In terms of their work skills, therefore, the
Indo-Arubans were again bypassed by the
new economic activity on the island. Unlike
the richer European-Arubans, they could
not afford to educate their children abroad.
This economic weakness, however, was
compensated for by their social position.
Indian families were typically related to, or
had long-standing working relationships
with, the half dozen or so leading families on
the island, and most owned a small amount
of land which provided a supplementary
existence. With an expanding economy,
plenty of casual work, familial generosity,
and greater opportunity to retain a "tradi-
tional" attitude, the Indians were able to take
part in the rapidly increasing consumption
but generally without integrating into the
work environment.
The influence of the American popula-
tion, like the Dutch, was always dispropor-
tionate to its size. Indeed, although the
legislative and judicial systems are Dutch,
these are barely more than a veneer on the
Americanization of the culture through the
close contact of the workplace. The Ameri-
can immigrants came to provide new role
models with regard to consumption and
formed a new economic and social elite,
distinct from the existing families and non-
Caribbean immigrants. While many
Arubans joined the oil refinery and earned
relatively high wages, for Arubans who
failed to adjust to the foreign language and
work practices, their extended family and
land tenure offered a tolerable alternative.
By contrast, the English-speaking Wind-
ward Islanders, while entering at the bottom
of the social hierarchy (and remaining there
until a new wave of Caribbean immigrants
arrived after the war), adjusted better to the
paternalistic structure of the oil company
and, because of their more relevant skills,
were better poised to make economic pro-


Lago Oil Refinery, Aruba.
gress. In essence, the majority of the "real
Aruban" population, whatever its internal
divisions, became sandwiched between the
two groups of new immigrants.
With the arrival of the refineries, the local
population turned away from agriculture
and fishing. Fresh water was produced by
distillation at the Lago refinery and later by
the island authorities. Electrical-generating
windmills which tapped the steady trade
winds to provide lighting were replaced by a


central distribution system. With respect to
individual values, Hartog speaks of a "com-
plete revolution" pointing to the shift from
frugality to consumerism. The consumerist
style of life enjoyed by most Arubans today
mimics that of the dominant culture: the
number of private vehicles, television sets or
air conditioners are typical of similarly
wealthy societies. If these items are not
found in more traditional homes, it may be
Continued on page 43


CAI?BBCAN PEVIIW/23


I ..I ~- - ii










An Absence of Ruins?

Seeking Caribbean Historical Consciousness

By Richard Price


Marshall Sahlins describes having
written his new book Islands of His-
tory "in a burst of enthusiasm over
the discovery that peoples of the Pacific I
had studied indeed had a history" In an
open confessional, he further explains:
"Adopting the timeless stance of the com-
mon average 'ethnographic present,' a kind
of occupational and theoretical hazard, I
was for a long time functionally ignorant of
this history." It was not simply, as Evans-
Pritchard once suggested, that Oceanists-
because of a lack of recorded history in
the Pacific-"could ignore history with an
easy conscience." Rather, Sahlins now tells
us, they (and he) ignored history with "a
false consciousness and, given the richness
of the archival record, never so easily
excusable."
Being unmusical about history has never
been as pervasive among Caribbeanists as
it has been among those who study the
islands of the Pacific. Thanks in particular to
Herskovits, and to the long-standing inter-
disciplinary tradition among Caribbeanist
and Afro-Americanist anthropologists and
historians, most of us in the fraternity have
always known that the past represented a
living and active aspect of any model we

Richard Price is professor of anthropology at
Johns Hopkins University. Earlier versions of
this paper were presented as an Alfred J.
Hanna Distinguished Lecture at Rollins Col-
lege and at CUNY It was inspired in part by
CR's special issue, "Focus on West Indian Lit-
erature" (1982).


might construct of the Caribbean present.
Our problem, rather, has always been at the
level of interpretation, both about the nature
of Caribbean history and about the mean-
ing of the past to Caribbean peoples. (In this
article, I confine my observations to the
non-Hispanic Caribbean.)
In her recently translated novel Here-
makhonon, the Guadeloupean-born
Maryse Conde parodies the conventional
wisdom about the Caribbean past with
which she was raised: "Don't you know that
history never bothered about niggers? It's
been proven they weren't worth the fuss.
They had no part in building the Golden
Gate Bridge or the Eiffel Tower. Instead of
praying at Notre Dame or Westminster Ab-
bey, they knealt before a piece of wood,
bowed down to a snake. A snake, can you
imagine? ... You might think that every-
body has a history. Well, no. These people
had none."
Such views are not limited to fictional
characters. V S. Naipaul asks, in one of his
often-quoted bitter nuggets from The Mid-
dle Passage, "How can the history of this
West Indian futility be written? What tone
shall the historian adopt?" And then he an-
swers, pen dripping with vitriol, "The his-
tory of the islands can never be satisfactorily
told. Brutality is not the only difficulty. His-
tory is built around achievement and crea-
tion; and nothing was created in the West
Indies."
While we may dismiss the canard ex-
pressed both by Condos fictional character
and by Naipaul himself-it's not that the 11


million Africans who arrived in the New
World in chains created nothing-it is still
the case, to paraphrase anthropologist Eric
Wolf, that they and their descendants con-
stitute a vanguard for those people to whom
history has too often been denied.
This denial of history has come, ironically,
from scholars in opposing ideological
camps and with contrasting traditions of
historical inquiry. Imperial historians, whose
view until recently held sway not only in the
standard scholarly interpretations of the
West Indian past but also in the school-
books of Caribbean children, tended to see
the Caribbean largely as a theater for strug-
gles among the great powers, as a more or
less heroic chapter in their own country's
overseas history, seen from the perspective
of Westminsttr, Madrid, the Hague or the
Quai d'Orsay. In this version of history, the
great bulk of Caribbean people hardly ap-
peared at all. Derek Walcott, recalling his St.
Lucian schooldays in Another Life, cap-
tured the local consequences of this style of
historiography: "I saw history through the
sea washed eyes / of our choleric, ginger-
haired headmaster, / beak like an in-
flamed hawk's, / a lonely Englishman
who loued parades, / sailing, and Con-
rad's prose."
Meanwhile a younger generation of histo-
rians, whose central concern was to criticize
these same imperial policies, tended to de-
pict Caribbean peoples largely as victims,
paying scant attention to the ways that the
people themselves dealt with the often terri-
ble conditions in which they had to live.


24/CA,?BBcAN rNVkI








































Opposite page: "Paquebot"; above: "Le Colonel."
Guyanese novelist Wilson Harris, writing (in
Explorations) of these more recent schol-
ars, noted that "the new historian-though
his stance is an admirable one in debunking
imperialism-has ironically extended and
reinforced old colonial prejudices which
censored the [Afro-Caribbean] imagination
as a 'rowdy' manifestation." Today there is a
growing sensitivity and sophistication
about these issues among many scholars
concerned with the Caribbean past, and the
work of Edward Kamau Brathwaite, Barry
Higman, Gordon Lewis, Sidney Mintz,
Monica Schuler, and numerous others is
constantly deepening our understandings.
Yet, as Orlando Patterson has recently re-
minded us, if history is always very much "a
moral science," then for questions regard-
ing the Afro-American past, "present real-
ities [may even] place too heavy a burden
on historical scholarship." As Walcott asks:
"But who in the New World does not have a
horror of the past, whether his ancestor was
torturer or victim? Who in the depth of con-
science, is not silently screaming for pardon
or revenge?"
Another idea widespread among North
American, European and Caribbean intel-
lectuals is that Caribbean peoples suffer
from a profound lack of historical con-
sciousness, that they know (and care) al-
most nothing about their own complex and
often unhappy pasts. The argument runs
something like this: the process of colonial-
ism has so whitewashed Caribbean minds
that "history" has come to mean only 1066,
Waterloo, and "nos ancetres les gaulois."


About their own history, the argument goes,
rural Caribbean people are abysmally, even
adamantly ignorant, having successfully
forgotten the horrors that their ancestors
suffered.
There is, perhaps, no finer literary ex-
pression of this view than George Lam-
ming's description (from In the Castle of
my Skin) of the thoughts and conversation
of two Barbadian schoolboys in the 1930s.
"He had asked the teacher what was the
meaning of slave, and the teacher ex-
plained. But it didn't make sense. He didn't
understand how anyone could be bought
by another. He knew horses and dogs could
be bought and worked. But he couldn't
understand how one man could buy an-
other man ... Slave ... Thank God, he
wasn't ever a slave. He or his father or his
father's father. Thank God nobody in Bar-
bados was ever a slave .... They laughed
quietly. Imagine any man in any part of the
world owning a man or woman from Bar-
bados. They would forget all about it since it
happened too long ago ... It was too far
back... And nobody knew where this slav-
ery business took place. The teacher had
simply said, not here, somewhere else.
Probably it never happened at all."
Walcott alludes to this view also when he
writes in "The Royal Palms" of an absence of
ruins: "Here there are no heroic palaces /
Netted in sea-green vines ... / If art is
where the greatest ruins are, / Our art is in
those ruins we became ..." In this poem,
Walcott evokes a Caribbean past in which
"Flesh fell so fast, the swiftest actuary /


Cannot record the sword's triumphal
march." But while Walcott implies that this
past has been "incorporated" into each Ca-
ribbean person, he also argues that such
persons remain flatly unaware. "In time," he
wrote (in "The Muse of History"), "the slave
surrendered to amnesia," and "That am-
nesia is the true history of the New World."
More recently, Jamaican novelist and
scholar Orlando Patterson stated yet more
precisely that "the most important legacy of
slavery is the total break, not with the past so
much as with a consciousness of the past.
To be a West Indian is to live in a state of utter
pastlessness."

A State of Pastlessness?
I wonder whether this common representa-
tion of Caribbean peoples as living in "utter
pastlessness" is not in part a bourgeois illu-
sion, a function of our own ethnocentrism. I
wonder whether the special Western mid-
dle-class lenses that we too often use may
not be ground in the wrong shapes, with
inappropriate angles of curvature, for us to
be able to discern the historical awareness
and reflectiveness of rural Caribbean
peoples.
The first cause of our collective myopia
might be our too-easy acceptance of a defi-
nition of history, part and parcel of our West-
ern intellectual baggage, as a privileged and
elite category of knowledge. And the diffi-
culty is compounded by the fact that this
particular view has been successfully
passed off onto rural folk throughout the
Caribbean. It is in this double sense, then,


CARIBBEAN PEVIEW/25












Forthcoming



September 8-13, 1985. 21st Annual
Meeting of the Caribbean Food
Crops Society. Trinidad, West In-
dies. Contact: Dr. St. C. Forde, Ca-
ribbean Food Crops Society, Carib-
bean Agricultural Research and
Development Institute (CARDI),
University Campus, SI. Augustine,
Trinidad. W.I.


September 18-21,1985. Conference
on International Development
and Alternative Futures: The
Coming Challenges. Hyatt Palm
Beach, Florida. Contact: Associa-
tion for the Advancement of Policy,
Research and Development in the
Third World, P.O Box 24234. Wash-
ington, D.C. 20024; (202) 639-6165.


September 20-21, 1985. Annual
Meeting of the Midwest Associa-
tion for Latin American Studies
(MALAS). University of Missouri at
Columbia. Theme: Latin America in
the World/The World in Latin Amer-
ica. Contacts: Program, Joseph
Richard Werne. Department of His-
tory, or Richard Collins. Department
of Political Science. Southeast Mis-
souri State University, Cape Girar-
Sdeau,-MO 63701, (314) 651-2180 or
651-2544; local arrangements, Win-
field Burggraaff, Department of His-
tory, University of Missouri. Colum-
bia, MO 65211, (314) 882-2481.


September 20-22, 1985. Workshop
on Multinationals in International
Development. Palm Beach, Flor-
ida.Contact: Dr. Mekki Mtewa, Inter-
national Development Foundation.
P.O. Box 24234, Washington. D.C.
20024: (301) 585-4480.


October 13-19, 1985. Energy for the
Americas International Confer-
ence. San Juan, Puerto Rico, Con-
vention Center. Contact: Dr. Juan A.
Bonnet, Jr. Director, Center for En-
ergy and Environmental Research,
University of Puerto Rico. GPO Box
3682, San Juan, -Puerto Rico
00936.


that the special authority of Walcott's gin-
ger-haired headmaster or Lamming's
grade school teacher takes on its frighten-
ing power. History becomes something that
is taught at school, remote and wholly irrel-
evant to daily life. Trinidadian novelist
Michael Anthony captures this insight in a
scene from All that Glitters, in which he
describes how Claudia, a schoolgirl, makes
the whole elementary school class laugh at
Teacher Myra for having attempted to de-
scribe Scarborough, the main town of To-
bago, as it was a century or two before:
"Claudia had said, 'But Miss, how you know
what it was like then? You weren't there.'
Teacher Myra had let the class have its good
laugh, and when this was over she just said,
'Claudia, this is history.'" Similarly, Naipaul,
writing in The Middle Passage of his own
schooldays, reports that "Trinidad was too
unimportant and we could never be con-
vinced of the value of reading the history of
a place which was, as everyone said, only a
dot on the map of the world.... This gave
us a strange time-sense. The England of
1914 was the England of yesterday; the Trin-
idad of 1914 belonged to the dark ages."
Two years ago the force of this colonial
view of history was brought home to me
once again, in a tumbledown rural house
tucked in a remote valley of the French Ca-
ribbean. I was interviewing a 92-year-old
peasant woman, who spoke only creole,
about her community's past. At one point I
mentioned istoua (history)-at which she
got a very special glint in her eye and re-
counted, with great excitement, nonstop,
the story of Joan of Arc, remembered from
her primary school days before the turn of
the century, calling out at the appropriate
moment in the story, in one of the few
French phrases she knew, "Sauvez la
France! Sauvez la France!"
What is referred to by the word "history"
then, by both scholars and illiterate Carib-
bean peasants, is something that has very
little to do with the lives of these peasants,
past or present. Hence the use of this colo-
nial schoolbook definition to investigate
historical consciousness among Caribbean
peoples is a thoroughly misguided effort,
preordained to uncover a deep cleavage be-
tween present experience and the past,
guaranteed to discover "a state of utter
pastlessness."
There is a more subtle reason we may
have failed to discern a strong historical
consciousness among rural Caribbean folk.
As Sidney Mintz has argued, the very idea of
a "peasant tradition" or "peasant con-
sciousness" in the Caribbean is compli-
cated by the fact that these peasantries are
so new. Caribbean peasantries in fact
emerged socially, culturally and physically
only after Europe had built, exploited and
begun to abandon its Caribbean plantation
colonies. The very concept of a peasant tra-
dition could therefore be considered an oxy-


moron; for it inevitably points us back to a
fairly recent moment of sudden disruption
and cleavage. As Haitian anthropologist
Rolph Trouillot put it: "In the Caribbean, 'tra-
dition,' in any given sense of the word, suc-
ceeded modernity: the 'peasant way of life'
fully blossomed only upon the ruins of the
plantations ... Here, the 'disruption' is our
starting point."
"Consciousness" and "tradition" are cul-
tural constructs; any peoples view of their
collective past is heavily conditioned by
their notions of who they are, their collective
identity. I would argue that the implications
of this realization have not been sufficiently
explored for the study of historical con-
sciousness among peoples whose pasts
have not taken the relatively even, linear
form that Westerners have too often un-
thinkingly assumed to be universal.
Historians of Western societies might do
well to take more seriously the extent to
which their analytic categories are cultural
constructs as well. It is only recently that our
own "chronology," taught in Western Civi-
lization classes, has begun to be seen for
what it is: a particular "native-model" of the
past. And a full explanation of why that
lovely old woman in Martinique got so ex-
cited about Joan of Arc would require a
historiography of French thought that dem-
onstrated the ways that each generation of
Frenchmen has reinvented Joan to suit their
needs, and how, after the French defeat of
1870, she became an ideal symbol of pa-
triotic vengeance since she came from the
recently-lost province of Lorraine. It was
during the 1890s that statues were raised to
her honor in Nancy and Paris, the process of
canonization was strongly pressed, and her
image on horseback, sword raised, was
plastered all over France. And it was at this
same time that French priests, sent out to
Martinique, began telling the school-
children they taught-including that old
woman, who was then a schoolgirl-the
glorious history of the Maid of Orleans.

The "Common-Sense" Approach
Insights derived from ethnographic work in
more obviously exotic societies might help
set us free from the common-sense bounds
that have thus far limited our perceptions of
the inner meaning of Caribbean history.
Last spring 1 received a letter from Yosef
Yerushalmi, Salo Wittmayer Baron Pro-
fessor of Jewish History, Culture and Soci-
ety at Columbia University, regarding First-
Time: "The preoccupation of the
Saramakas [the Afro-American Maroons
with whom I worked in Suriname] with their
history has both startled and fascinated me,
because it violates the conventionalwisdom
which denies any historical consciousness
to so-called primitive peoples." This dis-
tinguished historian is talking about a
strong and conventional "common-sense"
idea that is still taught as a matter of course


26/CAIBBEAN PIVIEW








in many European and American univer-
sities-that "primitive peoples" live in a
kind of timeless present, that they experi-
ence the passage of time cyclically (related
to the changing seasons), and that if left
undisturbed, such peoples would forever
continue their traditional life-ways un-
changed, rooted in rituals.
Ironically, anthropologists are partly to
blame for this widespread but erroneous
piece of conventional wisdom. One need
only think of Claude Levi-Strauss's distinc-
tion between "hot societies" (fast-changing
industrial societies, like our own) and "cold
societies" (technologically simpler peoples
who, he claimed, live in a timeless present,
without history, shored up by communal
myths and rituals); or Robert Lowie, who
once stated even more categorically, "I deny
utterly that primitive man is endowed with
historical sense or perspective." But more
recent research by anthropologists has
taken us some distance from these di-
chotomizing statements. As Sahlins re-
cently wrote, "Such dichotomies as stability
and change or past and present are in fact
pre-analytic and a priori: pre-posed to the
lives of other people, who themselves ignore
them cosmologically as well as gram-
matically. They are rather the petrified cate-
gories of our own native thought, whose
necessity has seemed to us the condition of
thought itself....
"Other peoples have known better than
we the co-existence of past and present....
There are differences in the structures of
historicity.... For the Hopi, as Whorf
showed, tomorrow is not another day; it is
just the same day, grown older and come
back again."
A second set of helpful insights for un-
raveling the Caribbean past comes from
anthropologists who have focused on the
ways that ideas about the past are transmit-
ted from one person to another in non-
Western societies, the vessels in which the
meaning of the past is stored, and the forms
in which the past is packaged. Here, the first
piece of common-sense baggage we must
discard is the one that automatically at-
taches history to books (and literacy). Lam-
ming's Bajan schoolboys, still worrying
about what the word "slave" means, can
again help make the point: "An old woman
said that once they were slaves, but now
they were free. ... He told the teacher what
the old woman said. She was a slave. And
the teacher said she was getting dotish... it
[slavery] had nothing to do with people in
Barbados. No one there was ever a slave, the
teacher said. ... The little boy didn't like the
sound of it. He ... was very anxious for the
old woman. Who put it into her head that
she was a slave, she or her mother or her
father before her? He was sure the old
woman couldn't read. She couldn't have
read it in a book. Someone told her.... The
old woman, poor fool!" Fortunately, Lam-


ming's schoolboys later come to under-
stand their initial mistake: just because the
old woman couldn't read didn't mean that
she wasn't the repository of central histor-
ical truths, truths far more important for
them than those of the schoolmaster.
Until recently, even many anthropolo-
gists went along with those schoolboys' first
assessment if you can't read, you are forced
to depend on hearsay, and hearsay (or
myth) is a far cry, they say, from history. Or,
as A. R. Radcliffe-Brown, a distinguished
British anthropological ancestor put it, "In
the primitive societies that are studied by
social anthropology there are no historical
records." In First-Time, I placed this
Radcliffe-Brown quotation as an ironic epi-
graph, in such a way that when the reader
turns the page he or she is met with a
spread of faces and minibiographies-the
Saramaka voices represented in the book.
These are my historical records; these peo-
ple are the vital repositories of historical
knowledge in the Suriname rain forest.
All too often, we have been able to deny
that there are historical records because we
have conceptualized these largely as written
documents. We have been able to deny that
there is historical consciousness because
we have sought out knowledge about
events we chose from history books (or
based oral history questions on a cookbook
understanding of anthropologists' inter-
view techniques and genealogical method).
The strongest empirical evidence I could
muster against the notion of a pastless Afro-
Caribbean is undoubtedly contained in
First-Time. That book lays bare a vision of
the past with overwhelming relevance to
present-day Saramakas. But an argument
might be made that the depth of historical
consciousness among the Saramaka Ma-
roons, however striking, should be viewed
as an anomaly in the Caribbean context,
that the meaning of the past to a people like
the Saramakas, whose collective identity
and continued persistence as a people is so
wrapped up in the preservation of a sense of
their historical struggles, is entirely different
from the meaning of the past to typical
Caribbean peasants or fishermen.
To challenge this view, I have begun re-
search in the heart of the modern island
Caribbean, precisely where "pastlessness"
is alleged by some scholars to be pervasive.
I purposefully chose a place that is in many
ways at the opposite extreme from the inte-
rior of Suriname in terms of its apparent
level of civilization, sophistication, and cos-
mopolitanism: the very French island of
Martinique where many peasants and fish-
ermen have cabinets containing crystal
goblets from Limoges, and regularly drink
imported wine with their meals. My work
focuses on the southern coast, in a hamlet
of fishermen. If any place in the rural Carib-
bean should be thoroughly colonialized-
black skins, white masks, as the Martin-


Forthcoming



October 17-20, 1985. Meeting of the
Pacific Coast Conference of Latin
American Studies (PCCLAS). Las
Vegas, Nevada. Flamingo Hilton.
Theme: Change and Continuity-
Cross Currents in Latin American
Development. Contact: Tom Wright,
College of Arts and Letters. Univer-
sity of Nevada. Las Vegas, NV
89154.

October 18-20,1985. Conference on
New Latin American Poetry. Du-
rango, Colorado. Contact: Prof.
Lourdes Carrasco, Department of
Foreign Languages. Fort Lewis Col-
lege, Durango, CO 81301.

November 14-16,1985. Symposium
on the Historical Novel in Latin
America. Tulane University. Con-
tact: Daniel Balderston, Department
of Spanish and Portuguese. Tulane
University, New Orleans, LA 70118.

November 19-22. 1985. Miami Con-
ference on the Caribbean. Hyatt
Regency Hotel, Miami. Florida.
Contact: Miami Conference on the
Caribbean, Department 7265,
Miami. FL 33195-7265.

April 3-5,1986. Southeastern Coun-
cil of Latin American Studies
(SECOLAS) Meeting. Clemson
University. Theme: City and Coun-
try in Latin America: The Implica-
tions of Change. Contacts: pa-
per/panel proposals. George A.
Bowdler. Political Science Depart-
ment. University of South Carolina
al Aiken. Aiken, SC 29801 and
Charles Kargleder, Department of
Languages, Spring Hill College,
Mobile AL 36608; local arrange-
ments, Joseph Arbena. Department
of History, Clemson University,
Clemson, SC 29631.

April 10-12, 1986. Conference on
Latin American Popular Culture.
New Orleans. Conlacts: Harold E.
Hinds, Division of Social Science,
University of Minnesota, Morris, MN
56267, (612) 589-4753 or Charles
M. Talum, Department of Foreign
Languages, Department 3L, New
Mexico State University, Las
Cruces, NM 88003 (505) 646-2942.


CAI?BBEAN EVIEW/27








iquan Frantz Fanon put it-it is a place like
this. But are these people really pastless,
without a history of their own, suffering from
historical amnesia?

History in Martinique
Imagine for a moment two scenes as if they
were on film. 24 May 1925. [We could at
this point use some old-fashioned belair
music, a bit of Caribbean ragtime. We could
also use some sepia tones for the images.]
It's municipal election day in the pictur-
esque fishing village of Diamant. A crowd of
frustrated citizens-poor, black, largely illit-
erate-march on the heavily guarded
mairie in an attempt to exercise their re-
cently-won right to vote. (Until this time,
only property owners of a certain class,
which excluded the great bulk of the popula-
tion, had suffrage rights. And for the first
time a local black man, a socialist, is con-
testing an election.) Since early morning,
police and soldiers, weapons at the ready,
have been carefully controlling access to
the ballot box to assure the victory of Colo-
nel de Coppens, a retired white military of-
ficer from an old planter family, who owns
the local sugar mill which seasonally em-
ploys many of the town's men. Refused en-
try to vote, the crowd lets fly a few conch
shells and empty bottles. Colonel de Cop-
pens, standing nearby, orders his machine
gunner to open fire. In an instant the sandy
street is soaked in innocent blood. And the
machine gunner-in remorse, people
say-suddenlyturns his weapon on Colonel
de Coppens, nearly cutting him in two. In all,
10 wounded and 10 dead, including Cop-
pens and his aide-de-camp.
Scene 2. An afternoon in the late 1940s.
A battered tramp steamer discharges its
cargo on the docks of Fort-de-France. A
strange-looking man, Medard Aribot-
body grotesquely twisted from 15 years of
forced labor and solitary confinement in the
dreaded French Guiana prison camps-
steps uncertainly ashore on his native soil,
his few possessions slung in a sack over his
shoulder. An inveterate loner, a poor black
illiterate man who had spent much of his
first 30 years living near Diamant in hidden-
away caves by the sea, a sculptor of marvels
in wood, Medard had finally returned home.
How are these two scenes related? The
answer will not be found in any history
book. It exists, rather, in a series of colorful
wooden sculptures, owned by Martiniquan
peasants and fishermen, and in the asso-
ciations these carry for the rural people of
the island.
Today, in all the fishing villages along the
southern coast of Martinique, almost any-
one can tell you that Medard, that enigmatic,
silent sculptor who died a decade ago, was
sent to the French Guiana prison camps for
having made a perfect "photo" (a scultpure
in wood) of Colonel de Coppens. And they
will point to Medard's miniature gin-


gerbread house on the cliffs by the sea out-
side Diamant as evidence of his artistic
genius. Tout moun (absolutely everyone)
knows that Medard once saw Coppens, that
he fashioned his image in wood with every
detail, from facial expression to military
medals, exactly in place, and that he was
condemned to the prison camps for this act
of gross impertinence.
The story of Medard and the 1925 shoot-
ings in Diamant is nowhere written down.
But, I would argue that for Martiniquan fish-
ermen all along the southern coast, it al-
ready forms a central chapter of their
modern history, of their meaningful past.



Medard's fragile sculptures
are one means by which
Martiniquans remember a
part of their past.


How is this historical knowledge preserved?
What do these people say and feel about it
all? Why does it seem to matter to them?
The simplest answer is that rural Martini-
quais see Medard as a kind of folk genius, as
a shining example that an illiterate, ugly,
poor black man, unable to speak French,
can nevertheless possess a remarkable
don, a gift of the highest order, in this case
revealing itself through the creation of like-
nesses in wood that are marvels to behold.
But there is much more. First, consider a
few of Medard's surviving creations. His
penultimate house still stands on the cliffs
near Diamant. It has been abandoned for
some 15 years and is heavily weathered and
partially torn apart by hurricanes. But one
can still see the radical miniaturization, the
traces of what were once four magnificent,
fantastic weathervanes that spun in the
wind, of intricate gables, window and door
decorations, and multicolor decorative
painting. Apaquebot, a steamship, all fitted
out-the kind M6dard liked to watch
through the tiny seaside window of his
house and to copy in miniature-now sits
in a local hotel. Another ship remains at the
site of the old prison camp in French
Guiana, where my friend and student Ken-
neth Bilby recently located and identified it,
and where the last director of thebagne still
remembered Medard. And finally, what
Medard called "Le Roi des Indes," the King
of the Indies, sits on a shelf in a fisherman's
house. Here, as in many of his other crea-
tions, Medard complemented the pieces of
wood that he found or stole with the detritus
of industrial society (cellophane from ciga-
rette packages, silver paper from gum
wrappers that he picked up alongside the
road) as well as vividly colored handmade
paints that he concocted from such mate-


rials as eggyolks and the red clay that sur-
rounded his house.
It is worth noting that much of Medard's
work plays visually with the raw materials of
Prospero-Caliban (master-slave) relations,
with the themes of colonial power and dom-
ination. Medard's acquaintances have told
us of his absolute fascination with colonial
pomp: he would stand at windows when-
ever there was a fancy ball and stare in at the
dancers all night long; he was fascinated as
well by military parades. Among his most
marvelous creations was a miniature piano:
while Medard tinkled a simple tune on the
keys from the front, a spectator could look
in the back and see tiny, fancy-dress danc-
ers, in pairs, whirling and swirling to the
music.
It is crucial for my more general argument
that Medard's works are, for the most part,
still in the houses of poor fishermen and
peasants, where they are kept on a table or
nailed to the wall. Certainly the sculptures
themselves, the physical objects, play an
important mnemonic role in keeping alive
the rest of what people say about Medard,
and what he represents. The sculptures, re-
gardless of their particular subject matter,
have become the vehicles for the preserva-
tion of central information about the soci-
ety's past.
From what people choose to remember
about the man, I will be able to reconstruct a
rather full biography. (I have already been
able to confirm large portions of it from
police records and other documents in
Paris and, with the help of Kenneth Bilby,
have even located a former convict in
French Guiana who knew Medard there in
the 1930s.) But the details of his biography,
no matter how inherently interesting, are
not directly relevant for my purposes here.
Of more immediate interest is what local
fishermen and peasants were able to tell us
about what they call "the massacre of Dia-
mant," the election day bloodbath of 1925,
and the associations they draw between
Medard's art and the principles of political
freedom that were tested that day. The re-
membered details are numerous and rich,
precisely because the relationships of dom-
ination symbolized by that event remain
central in these people's lives today. Re-
cently Iwas able to examine the newspapers
of the time, now in the departmental ar-
chives, and they provided striking confir-
mation of these vividly remembered details,
with the socialist paper even describing the
fact that the coffin of Colonel de Coppens
was spat upon in town after town as its
horse-drawn cart moved across the bumpy
face of Martinique to a cemetery at the other
end of the island.
Medard's importance to southern Martin-
niquais is as a historical symbol of special
power and poignancy. The 1920s, the days
of the hated Gouverneur Richard, were the
single most repressive moment in the mod-


28/CARBBEAN PEVI-W








ern colonial history of the island. The small,
immensely wealthy white planter class,
with support from the police and military,
systematically terrorized black workers
throughout the island. For people in the
south, the massacre of Diamant was the
epitome of this arbitrary, illegal exercise of
governmental force and planter domina-
tion. And its central perpetrator was none
other than the owner of the local sugarmill,
Colonel de Coppens. In contrast, Medard is
the perfect historiographical foil for Cop-
pens, having been dismissed officially from
conscription to World War I on the grounds
that he was an "imbecile." Medard was a
vagrant, a petty thief, a man who lived in
caves, in every way outside the proper colo-
nial order of things. And he was, of course,
the creator of the famous "photo" of Colonel
de Coppens, a colorfully painted statue that
still stands among the rum bottles in a
ramshackle fishermen's cafe by the sea.
The past of non-Western peoples is often
preserved in special forms (songs, place
names, proverbs, prayers, drum slogans)
that are largely unfamiliar to literate out-
siders, and these forms need not neces-
sarily include straight narrative or storytell-
ing (the forms in which Westerners gen-
erally expect nonwritten history to come
packaged). Medard's fragile sculptures,
even the ruins of his two remarkable
houses, serve the same ends for rural Mar-
tiniquais that songs or place names do for
Saramakas: they are one means by which
Martiniquais remember a part of the past
that they are not prepared to forget, that they
want their children and their children's chil-
dren always to remember.

The Meaningful Past
Medard's case is not a unique or anomalous
example but rather a fully representative
one. Anyone who has read Joseph Zobel's
classic dealing with roughly the same his-
torical period, La rue cases-Nbgres (1950),
or seen the film version, Sugar Cane Alley,
will have some sense of the immediacy of
slavery and its meaning to illiterate rural
Martiniquais during the first half of the 20th
century. These cases should help us to un-
derstand how much of the scholarly dis-
missal of Caribbean peasant consciousness
is ludicrous simply because it is based on
middle-class, ethnocentric "common
sense" (both about peasants and about his-
tory). For example, the anthropologist
Jonathan Wylie (in Comparative Studies in
Society and History) describes with frustra-
tion that in the fishing village of Casse, Do-
minica, "no one seemed to know or care
about the history of the village"; there was a
"continual reinvention of the past" and an
absence of any "generally coherent histor-
ical consciousness." And he cites as evi-
dence such facts as that Baptiste, a local
fisherman, "can tell you in detail how he
acquired his land in the hills, but he is


M6dard's abandoned house near Diamant, Martinique.


baffled [note this choice of words!] if you ask
what his father was doing in '1914.'" But
should this really surprise us? Eskimos are
interested in kinds of snow, Caribbean
peasants in the history of their plots of land,
and Western historians in Napoleon,
Churchill and selected dates. But which of
these people has the deepest historical con-
sciousness, and what forms it takes, is quite
another issue-not to be approached by
asking culturally loaded questions but
rather by careful in-context listening and
observing. As Walcott wrote in "The Muse
of History": "[Caribbean] Fisherman and
peasant know who they are and what they
are and where they are, and when we show
them our wounded sensibilities we are,
most of us, displaying self-inflicted
wounds."
Even though Martiniquan fishermen and
peasants have been brought under ever-
increasing and really quite massive con-
sumerist pressures from the metropole,
they still share a strong sense of who and
what and where they are. And this common
sense of identity is shored up by ideas about
a common past, discussed by both men
and women in one way or another on a daily
basis, in the course of their work and play.
Among peasants in northern Martinique,
the anthropologist Willie Baber recently re-
ported hearing a municipal election being
hotly debated in the local cafes by reference
to a case that dated from the early 19th
century; the men involved in this informal
discussion were able to count on their fel-
lows' knowledge of this long-ago precedent
with nothing more than an elliptical refer-
ence. No further explanation was necessary
for anyone present, except the anthropolo-
gist, to grasp the ways that the current case
was illuminated by an analogous event that
had taken place 150 years before.
The ways that rural Caribbean people
preserve the past events and personages
that they consider meaningful may be as
varied as physical objects (as in the case of


M6dard's sculptures), political discourse (as
in the northern Martiniquan example),
dance or song (think of calypso), or per-
sonal, place, or even animal names (along
the lines that I described for Saramaka).
Aime Cesaire opens his historical drama
about Haiti, The Tragedy of King Chris-
tophe, with a scene in a 20th century Carib-
bean cockpit, where the first combatants of
the day are named Petion and Christophe.
As the onstage "commentator" explains,
this fashion of naming fighting cocks after
historical figures makes sense: "A King and
a President of the Republic are bound to tear
each other's eyes out. And if they tear each
other's eyes out, why not name fighting
cocks after them? ... The main thing is to
understand the situation and to know the
men the cocks were named after."
Preserving knowledge of key historical
relationships by naming fighting cocks
after the central protagonists of a national
revolution occurring two centuries ago may
seem more cumbersome than justwriting it
all down in a book. But it is one of perhaps
scores of specifically Caribbean historical
modi operandi. And the history that is re-
membered in such fashion is guaranteed to
consist of those aspects of the past that
really matter to Caribbean people. We must
begin listening more closely for this other
kind of history, teasing it out from its often
unexpected modes of expression. And in
the process, we must always try to avoid
drawing uncritically on our own "common-
sense" assumptions about history.
Derek Walcott tells a story on himself
about names and history, gently poking fun
at his own inability to take this same lesson
to heart. Walcott was some years ago mus-
ing over the choice of a name for the main
character of his beautiful short play The
Sea at Dauphin. Walcott (who had been
living in Castries, the capital) told St. Lucian
literary critic Patricia Ismond that he had
wanted the most "African" name he could
Continued on page 45


CAlBBEAN VI EW/29










Breaking the Puerto Rico Logjam

Ask the Courts to Clarify Status

By Maurice Wolf


It is a curious fact of political life that
concern over taxes has played a pre-
dominant role in determining the course
of action nations and would-be nations
have taken in their search for political and
economic independence. We need only to
be reminded of the British Stamp Tax in the
American colonies to realize the truth of this
statement. Perhaps the same will hold true
for Puerto Rico.
Last year the US Congress amended a
provision of the Internal Revenue Code relat-
ing to the rebate to Puerto Rico of the excise
taxes on alcoholic beverages of Puerto Rican
origin sold in the United States, and in 1982
Congress amended a section of the Internal
Revenue Code, Section 936, which provides
tax credits for US companies operating in
Puerto Rico. Now President Reagan, in his
May 1985 Tax Proposals to the Congress for
Fairness, GrowthandSimplicity, proposes
to phase out this provision entirely.
Both of these provisions are cornerstones
of the relationship created between Puerto
Rico and the United States in the establish-
ment of the Commonwealth status in 1952
and are fundamental to its continued politi-
cal and socioeconomic well-being. For
Congress to unilaterally alter these provi-
sions casts doubt on the validity of the Com-
monwealth status itself; it adds fuel to fires
already kindled that Puerto Rico is not really
a self-governing entity within the United
States system, but a not-too-well disguised
colony, subject to the dictates of the US
Congress.
The Commonwealth status was an im-
provement, a step forward, over the former
status. Clearly, before 1952 Puerto Rico was
a colony, a "territory." Congress governed,
and although Puerto Rico had been granted
some measure of local government and an
elected governor, the rule of Congress was
nevertheless supreme, subject to the Con-

Maurice Wolf is the senior partner of the Wash-
ington, D.C. law firm Wolf, Arnold & Cardoso,
P C., specializing in transactions involving
Latin America and the Caribbean. He is a for-
mer Senior Counsel of the Inter-American De-
velopment Bank and longtime observer of the
Puerto Rican scene. Edward Tolchin, Esq., as-
sisted in the preparation of this article.


stitution of the United States, which did or
did not totally apply to Puerto Rico, depend-
ing on whom one talked to or which judge
decided the issue.
That the Commonwealth status was not
meant to be static, but a step in a direction
which was then not identifiable cannot be
refuted. Even Mufioz Marin recognized that
the political entity of which he was the mid-
wife was certain to be an advance in the
political maturation of Puerto Rico. Some
say that he was a closet independentista;
others recognize that he was a pragmatist-
obtaining all that the US was willing to give
at that time. That this "new" -whatever it
was-status created, and still creates, prob-
lems is certainly not reason to deny its valid-
ity or existence. It was a vibrant, creative act
that moved people forward.
People, especially politicians, give sterile
speeches. Academicians write articles
which tend to beat issues to death; but ideas
and concepts, especially those involving
political self-determination, never can be
sterile. The benign neglect, the rhetorical
statements and political digressions made
for the benefit of the electorate notwith-
standing, such ideas and concepts cannot
be turned into the wasteland of this genera-
tion. For President Carter to use statehood
in the 1980 campaign as a wedge against
Teddy Kennedy, for candidate Bush to come
to Puerto Rico, for example, and say "state-
hood now," or for candidate Reagan to write
a Wall Street article on this theme is purest
political rhetoric; as they all knew, or at least
should have known, that statehood for
Puerto Rico is not something that can be
achieved easily.
Tax matters may become the fulcrum
with which to force political action, however
curious that seems. Perhaps the time has
come for Puerto Rico to stop being timid
and to take the initiative to determine once
and for all whether the United States gov-
ernment is serious about its political future.

Judicial Solution
Puerto Rico should take advantage of Con-
gress's action changing the two tax-related
items-limitation on the rebate of the ex-
cise tax on alcoholic spirits and the amend-


ment to Section 936-and use them as a
springboard to determine the intent of the
United States government.
Carefully thought-out, analyzed cases
should be instituted by persons with proper
standing to determine once and for all
whether Congress does reign supreme over
Puerto Rico; whether Public Law 600, to-
gether with the Constitution of Puerto Rico
and the subsequent approval of the Con-
stitution by the Congress, was, in fact, a
"compact" between the United States and
the people of Puerto Rico creating the Com-
monwealth of Puerto Rico, which may not
be fundamentally altered without the con-
sent of both; or was it all an act of Congress,
pure and simple, and therefore, in effect, a
sham perpetuated on Puerto Rico which,
while altering perceptions, did not change
the reality of the political relationship be-
tween the two.
If, in fact, the Commonwealth status was
nothing more than old wine in a new bottle,
a mere change of labels, changing nothing
else, then it matters little that the courts
have ruled that federal anti-trust laws do not
apply to commercial activities within Puerto
Rico, that a convicted felon may transport a
weapon from one town to another in Puerto
Rico without running afoul of federal law,
that a three-judge court is required to rule
on the constitutionality of Puerto Rican leg-
islation, and that the myriad other cases
deciding points of law touching upon
Puerto Rico and its relationship to the US
have been heard.
A case should be prosecuted through the
federal court system, up to the Supreme
Court, to obtain a decision once and for all
that Congress is without authority to enact
legislation which fundamentally alters the
relationship between the United States and
Puerto Rico embodied in Public Law 600,
the Puerto Rican Constitution and Puerto
Rican Federal Relations Act, directly or indi-
rectly, and that such Congressional enact-
ment is invalid as it is without the will of the
governed-those of Puerto Rico.
To date this issue has not been presented
to the US Supreme Court. Perhaps a strict,
straightforward, technical, legal argument
based solely on precedent would be difficult


30/CAl BBEAN REVIEW


























to support; I do not therefore advocate such
a narrow approach. Instead, I would muster
all the political, socioeconomic and histor-
ical data possible on the status of Puerto
Rico, its relationship with the United States
since 1952, to bolster the pure legal posi-
tion and convince the court by an over-
whelming abundance of illustrative material
which clearly demonstrates that today, in
the 1980s, the US Congress unilaterally
cannot act to change the fundamental rela-
tionships between the people of Puerto Rico
and the United States. Too much is at stake.
In 1953, if you were to ask a jurist, lawyer
or legislator what was the settled law of the
land with respect to segregation in educa-
tion, the answer would have been, perhaps
given reluctantly, that separate-but-equal
facilities were the law of the land. But in
1954 the Supreme Court of the United
States handed down its decision in Brown
u Board of Education. Although nothing
had changed, the justices of the US Su-
preme Court saw clearly that the time had
come when previous decisions had to give
way, and that separate-but-equal educa-
tional facilities could not continue; so "new"
law was created by the Brown u Board of
Education decision.
Similarly, my contention is that under the
right circumstances, the right conditions,
the United States Supreme Court could be
convinced to rule that the relationship be-
tween the United States and Puerto Rico
may not be altered without the consent of
the governed, the people of Puerto Rico.
If the Court rules that Congress may not
in fact legislate unilaterally in a manner
which modifies the relationship between
Puerto Rico and the United States, that the
political actions in the 1950s which led to
the creation of the Commonwealth were
truly in the nature of a compact, and that the
consent of the people of Puerto Rico is re-
quired to make any fundamental change in
the relationship, then of course the issue will
be decided and both Puerto Rico and the
United States can then move forward to de-
termine, jointly and mutually, on an equal
footing, their future relationship.
It's no use pretending that this decision
would put to an end the debate on the status


of Puerto Rico. Independentistas and state-
hooders would still claim that Puerto Rico
was a colony and that the only route avail-
able for full self-determination was
either independence or statehood. Mind
you, a decision of this nature most decid-
edly would not preclude either alternative. In
fact, it is quite likely that these two options
would become even more viable as Puerto
Rico would then be negotiating from a posi-
tion of strength, if not equality, with the
United States in the determination of its
political future, especially if the decision
were to be backed by a carefully analyzed,
detailed opinion. If, however, it is Puerto
Ricds decision to improve the Common-
wealth relationship, to elevate it in a manner
which resembles "quasi-sovereignty" as set
forth in the "Compact of Permanent Union
between Puerto Rico and the United States"
prepared by the Advisory Group on Puerto
Rico in 1975, then this also would become
more feasible.
On the other hand, if the Court rules that
what really happened in the 1950s was
merely an act of Congress, and as no Con-
gress can tie the hands of a subsequent
Congress, the relationship between the
people of Puerto Rico and the United States


may be changed unilaterally by mere act of
Congress, the issue would have also been
joined, and Puerto Rico would at least know
where it stands in relation to the division of
powers.
To many, both in and outside of the
United States, such a decision would be
tantamount to recognizing Puerto Rico's
colonial status. A "unique" type of colonial-
ism, perhaps, as Jose A. Cabranes claims,
in "Puerto Rico: Out of the Colonial Closet,"
but colonialism nevertheless. It is, however,
part of my thesis that it would be impossible
in this day and age for the United States to
be an imperial power and to have within its
system a recognized colony; therefore Con-
gress and the administration, together with
Puerto Rico, would have to move quickly to
establish a relationship that would clearly be
identified as noncolonial before the matter
became a raging fireball out of control in
international arenas to be utilized by the
enemies of the United States. Puerto Rico
would gain most, and although a decision
might have to be reached quickly, it would
or perhaps, should, decide the matter once
and for all, forcing the United States Con-
gress to come to grips with this issue.
However, we should not forget that his-


CAIBBEAN IeviEW/31








tory has proven that it is difficult to forecast
how the United States Supreme Court may
act in any given circumstance, and it is per-
haps not unlikely that, given the potentially
inflammatory political ramifications of a
decision, it might, as it has done in the past,
find a way to avoid tackling such a contro-
versial issue head on. It might suggest that
this is a political problem requiring a politi-
cal solution. I would hope not. In any event
there is little that Puerto Rico could lose by
the matter being decided either way by the
Supreme Court. The downside risk is mini-
mal. A decision against Puerto Rico would
force the issue, and the upside gain is tre-
mendous, as Puerto Rico would then hold
virtually all the cards in determining its po-
litical future.

Commonwealth Undefined
Puerto Rico's dilemma arises out of the lack
of definition that surrounded the political
actions which were taken in the 1950s to
develop the Commonwealth status. Even
the Supreme Court, while recognizing that
"Puerto Rico has a relationship to the United
States that has no parallel in our history,"
has yet to define that status. Puerto Rico's
status from the very beginning was ambig-
uous and uncertain, and in some way differ-
ent from the other territories that the United
States had acquired. Statehood was not
meant to be the ultimate status for the is-
land, and in a series of Supreme Court deci-
sions around the turn of the century, the so-
called "Insular cases," the gap between
Puerto Rico and other territories of the
United States was widened, see e.g., De
Lima v. Bidwell, 182 U.S.1 (1901);
Downes u Bidwell, 182 U.S. 244 (1901);
Dooley v. U.S., 182 U.S. 222 (1901);
Armstrong u U.S., 182 U.S. 243 (1901).
This lack of a clear and pronounced path
to statehood, and United States reluctance
to be considered a colonial power, led
to inconsistencies in the treatment of
Puerto Rico culminating in Public Law 600,
the adoption of the Constitution of Puerto
Rico and in the Puerto Rican Federal Rela-
tions Act.
Even though the original intent of the
Congress of the United States in enacting
Public Law 600 may be unclear, regardless
of that intent the fact is that a series of events
occurred, a process, if you will, of collabora-
tion between two political entities which,
while not equal, worked out together a
modus vivendi, the "third alternative," the
Commonwealth status. This was no mere
unilateral act of Congress. Puerto Rican ap-
proval by way of a referendum was needed.
The Congress, in approving the Constitu-
tion adopted by Puerto Rico, stated that it
was "...as a compact with the people of
Puerto Rico,..." and as the Constitution itself
states it is created "...within our union with
the United States of America."
If, as leading commentators say, Con-
gress utilized its powers under Article VI,


Section 3 of the United States Constitution
which states that "Congress shall have
Power to dispose of and make all needful
Rules and Regulations respecting the Terri-
tory or other Property belonging to the
United States...," then it was a grant of au-
thority by Congress to the people of Puerto
Rico which allowed them to enact a Con-
stitution and to concur with the Congress of
the United States that it would be henceforth
governed by a series of enactments which,
taken together, Congress called in "...a na-
ture of a compact." Could we not say that
Congress in effect elevated the people of
Puerto Rico for a brief moment in history to



Does Congress have
authority to fundamentally
alter the relationship
between the United States
and Puerto Rico?


political equality and, by doing so, granted a
measure of self-determination to allow
them to enter into a mutually binding
relationship?
Certainly the status of Puerto Rico
changed with the enactment of what, for the
sake of brevity, I call the "Commonwealth
process." The courts of the United States
have recognized that there was such a
change, in cases which have dealt with vary-
ing aspects of this change, although unfor-
tunately, no determinative case has yet to
reach the Supreme Court.
The principal detractors of the Common-
wealth process have labeled it a sham: Their
main argument has been that what one
Congress has put together another may
rend asunder-that one Congress cannot
bind the hands of a subsequent Congress.
While this is of hoary precedent, especially
in the British Parliament, its validity is chal-
lenged by measures taken by the Congress
which are in the nature of fait accompli,
which once made, cannot be unmade. One
obvious example is statehood. I would dare
anyone today to claim that Hawaii or Alaska,
for example, could be cast adrift from our
federal union by Congressional action. Why,
then, can we not accept the fact that Con-
gress, through the series of acts it author-
ized, put Puerto Rico in such a position that
a status evolved from which there is no turn-
ing back?
Commentators and courts have noted
over the years that Congress does not (usu-
ally) act in an offhand or careless manner. If
this is the case, then it would seem that the
Commonwealth process authorized by act
of Congress, which deliberately included ac-
tions taken by the people of Puerto Rico,
cannot be considered as loosely taken and


of no consequence in the determination of
Congressional intent.
Contemporary commentators were clear
on this point. Congressman Miller, the then
Chairman of the House Committee on Inte-
rior and Insular Affairs, said that in his opin-
ion Puerto Rico, with the enactment of
Public Law 600, had become a "...com-
monwealth, comparable in its political au-
thority to any of the 48 commonwealths
which we know as the 48 states that form
the Union; but under the term of compact
embodied in Public Law 600 of the Eighty-
first Congress 1950, the Federal Govern-
ment will do for it what it does for the 48
states of the Union, while it will not interfere
in any matter reserved to a federal govern-
ment in a federal system." Senator Butler,
one of the co-sponsors of Public Law 600,
stated quite explicitly that the Common-
wealth of Puerto Rico was created by this law
and is not subject to change unilaterally by
either the Congress or Puerto Rico. There
were of course comments made to the
contrary.
We could examine the statements made
by the representatives of the US administra-
tion during that period, when they moved in
the UN to eliminate Puerto Rico from the list
of non-self-governing territories for which
reports had to be submitted under Article
73(c) of the UN Charter. We could examine
the oft-quoted statements made by the po-
litical leadership of Puerto Rico, particularly
Mufioz Marin, such as when he told the
Senate Committee on Interior and Insular
Affairs that the legislation proposed would
abolish the colonial status in a new way.
Although previously only two ways were
thought to be possible, now a third means
of escape from colonialism was being cre-
ated. "This cruel dilemma," he said "...is
now being abolished by the creative states-
manship of the Congress, of the president of
the United States, and of the Puerto Rican
people."
My thesis, however is not founded entirely
upon legislative history, although I think an
excellent argument can be made on this
basis. Is it really conceivable that in the
1980s the Supreme Court, more than 30
years after the fact, could rule that the Con-
gress of the United States did not mean
what it said and that Puerto Rico, during all
these years, when colonies all over the world
became independent, some by force of
arms, was a "territory" or colony of the
United States? I believe that such a position
is virtually outside the realm of possibility
and that a tight, well-argued, well-reasoned
case could prove this thesis.

The Tax Issues
Let's now go to the specifics of the two tax
actions which, in my opinion, could be used
to precipitate a decision in favor of the new
imaginative status of the Commonwealth
created back in the 1950s.
Section 4 of Public Law 600 (48 USC


32/CAIBBEAN rVIEW








731(b)) enacts the Puerto Rican Federal Re-
lations Act which in effect is a codification,
with amendments, of the Organic or Jones
Act of 1917. Section 9 of that act states:
"That the statutory laws of the United States
not locally inapplicable, except as herein-
before or hereinafter otherwise provided,
shall have the same force and effect in
Puerto Rico as in the United States, except
the internal revenue laws....Provided, how-
ever, that, after May 1, 1946, hereafter all
taxes collected under the internal revenue
laws of the United States on articles pro-
duced in Puerto Rico and transported to the
United States, or consumed in the Island
shall be covered into the Treasury of Puerto
Rico." (78 USC 734) Even a casual reading
of this provision indicates that the Internal
Revenue laws were not meant to apply
in Puerto Rico. Such had been the case
since 1900.
Section 936 of the Internal Revenue Code
does not directly have any application to
Puerto Rico. It is a provision which applies to
US corporations operating in the territories
of the United States including Puerto Rico. It
provides for tax credits on the profits earned
by an affiliate of a mainland corporation in a
"possession" of the United States, e.g.,
Puerto Rico. It had its origin in Section 621
of the Internal Revenue Code enacted in the
early 1920s.
The Puerto Rican Federal Relations Act
clearly specifies that the Internal Revenue
laws do not apply in Puerto Rico, even
though there were many provisions of those
laws then existing which did in fact apply to
Puerto Rico. It was also part of economic
reality that Puerto Rico had then, and for
many years before, its own system of taxa-
tion which closely resembled that of the
United States, enacted pursuant to Con-
gressional authority. Perhaps in lesser cir-
cumstances, when the issue does not rise to
one of such paramount economic impor-
tance, the argument raised that if a tax provi-
sion is incorporated in United States law
and is not specifically covered by the Puerto
Rican Federal Relations Act, it may validly
be applied to Puerto Rico.
However, in the case of this particular
provision, now Section 936, in spite of it
being part of the United States Internal Rev-
enue Code, it provided the principal pillar
on which the economic development of
Puerto Rico rested. It was the raison d'etre
for Operation Bootstrap. Without the eco-
nomic basis created by tax holidays and tax
credits, Commonwealth status would have
been impossible. It is, therefore, inconceiva-
ble that a subsequent Congress could by
fiat, unilaterally eliminate such a fundamen-
tal element of the US-Puerto Rican relation-
ship. As Norman Ture, in an article in the
Wall Street Journal, stated in relation to the
1982 proposed legislation: "This provision
would in effect cancel Puerto Rico's Opera-
tion Bootstrap, a set of tax provisions, ac-
commodated by a provision in the US


Internal Revenue Code, which creates sig-
nificant incentives for US companies to set
up affiliates and to produce in Puerto Rico.
The Senate provision would deal a stunning
blow to Puerto Ricds economy...."
For the Congress to unilaterally enact
such legislation would in effect be playing
into the hands of those who claim that the
Commonwealth's process amounted to
nothing and that Puerto Rico is a mere
colony and we should recognize it as such.
For if the US Congress is capable of remov-
ing the buttress upon which Puerto Rico's
economy rests, it would be tantamount to
ruling Puerto Rico to the same extent as if it



Were the political actions
which led to the creation of
the Commonwealth truly in
the nature of a compact?


had passed legislation imposing United
States taxation on its inhabitants.
The Puerto Rican Federal Relations Act,
in delimiting the boundaries of the political
relationship between the United States and
the people of Puerto Rico, in effect created a
situation analogous to the relationships cre-
ated when treaties for the avoidance of dou-
ble taxation are entered into between two
sovereign nations. In such treaties each
party agrees to the manner in which entities
are taxed in the other's territory. Puerto Rico
relied upon the implicit promise contained
in the Puerto Rican Federal Relations Act
that it would be able to continue Operation
Bootstrap, which provides for tax incentives
for entities operating in .Puerto Rico. These
incentives, coupled with the essentially tax-
free situation created by the predecessor to
Section 936 and the access to mainland
United States of goods manufactured in
Puerto Rico, duty free, were the lynch pins
on which the Puerto Rican economy was
founded.
My discussions of the legal position with
respect to the amendment of Section 936
indicated that I thought on strictly technical
legal grounds, the argument that Congress
may not alter this provision without the con-
sent of Puerto Rico could be considered
tenuous. Such, however, is not the case with
the provision contained in the Deficit Re-
duction Act of 1984, affecting the distilled
spirits industry of Puerto Rico.
Since 1917 the proceeds of the excise tax
on alcoholic beverages produced in Puerto
Rico and sold in the United States were
collected by the United States Government
and rebated to Puerto Rico. In 1952 the
Puerto Rican Federal Relations Act embod-
ied this provision as part and parcel of the
conditions under which Puerto Rico be-
came a Commonwealth.


The United States Congress, inthe Deficit
Reduction Act of 1984, increased the federal
excise tax from $10.50 per proof gallon to
$12.50 per proof gallon on all liquor sold in
the United States. However, Puerto Rico (as
well as the Virgin Islands) was excluded from
this $2 per proof gallon increase, and there-
fore Congress in effect amended Section 9
of the Puerto Rican Federal Relations Act.
"All" now meant "most."
The 1984 statute also narrowed the defi-
nition of the words "produced in Puerto
Rico" to mean distilled spirits, at least 90
percent of which "...are attributable to dis-
tilled spirits originally distilled in Puerto
Rico." Furthermore, a "value added" re-
quirement was introduced which, in effect,
further precluded rebate of the excise tax
unless the cost or value of materials pro-
duced in Puerto Rico, plus direct costs of
processing in Puerto Rico, equaled or ex-
ceeded 50 percent of the' value of such arti-
cle when it was brought into the United
States (See 26 USC 7652). Also excluded
totally from the rebate were the excise taxes
on cane spirits or sugar-based alcohol used
in making cordials and liqueurs.
Perhaps the addition of these provisions
was reasonable, especially in light of the
actions that are believed to have precipi-
tated them. But this is beside the point. Any
such fundamental change to the Puerto
Rican Federal Relations Act, in our view,
especially those restricting the application
of revenue-producing provisions and which
therefore strike at the very heart of the eco-
nomic well-being of the island, may not be
undertaken without the consent of the af-
fected party to the compact.
Clearly here the action taken by the
United States Congress not only goes con-
trary to the intention of the Puerto Rican
Federal Relations Act but, in our view, flies in
the teeth of its very specific provisions. For
Congress to redefine what is meant by "arti-
cles produced in Puerto Rico" is sophistry,
especially 30 years after the enactment of
the Puerto Rican Federal Relations Act and
more than 60 years after the provision origi-
nally went into effect.
A clearer case upon which the Supreme
Court could determine the issues of the na-
ture of the Commonwealth with respect to
Congress's capability to unilaterally change
the underlying conditions, as set forth in the
Puerto Rico Federal Relations Act, would be
hard to find. Congress changed the provi-
sions, pure and simple, laying the founda-
tion for an almost perfect case.
Congress has, in fact, obtained Puerto
Rico's consent in several instances. In one
such instance, regulating certain aspects of
the sale of distilled spirits of Puerto Rican
origin in the US, Congress deliberately
added Subsection 5314 (a) (1)which stated
"(1) Applicability. The provisions of this sub-
section shall not apply to the Common-
wealth of Puerto Rico unless the Legislative
Continued on page 45


CAIBBEAN EVIEW/33










Stuck on Status

New Ideas about an Old Problem

A Review Essay by James L. Dietz


Puerto Rico: A Colonial Experiment,
Raymond Carr. 477 p. New York University
Press and Vintage Books, New York, 1984.
$25, hardcover; $9.95, paper.
The Puerto Rican Question, Jorge Heine
and Juan M. Garcia-Passalacqua. 72 p.
Foreign Policy Association, New York,
Headline Series No. 266, November/
December 1983. $3.00 (paper).
Puerto Rico: Freedom and Equality at
Issue, Juan M. Garcia-Passalacqua. 176 p.
Praeger, New York and the Hoover
Institution Press, Stanford, 1984. $12.95.
Time for Decision: The United States
and Puerto Rico, Jorge Heine, ed. 303 p.
North-South Publishing Co., Lanham,
Md., 1983. $19.95 (paper).
Puerto Rico: The Search for a National
Policy, Richard J. Bloomfield, ed. 192 p.
Westview Press, Boulder, Colorado, 1985.
$30.00.


Puerto Rico has lost its way. Economic stag-
nation, compounded by a deepening and
pervasive political malaise, works to dele-
gitimate both the Operation Bootstrap
strategy of Industrialization and the com-
monwealth status which has provided its
legal foundation. Of course political and
economic crises are no strangers to Puerto
Rico. Political tranquility and economic
progress had but a relatively short reign in
this century: a period of roughly 20 years
extending from the end of the Second
World War until about the mid-1960s, dom-
inated by one party, the Partido Popular
DemocrAtico (PPD), and one man, Luis
Mufioz Marin. After Mufoz left the gover-
norship in 1964, the political hegemony of
the PPD began to unravel, and the eco-
nomic model forged by the populares has
by now more than amply demonstrated its
inherent inability to create a sustainable and
more autonomous economic structure.

James L Dietz teaches economics and di-
rects Latin American studies at California
State University, Fullerton. He is the author of
Economic History of Puerto Rico (Princeton
University Press).


In 1984, though the economy began to
show some signs of real growth after two
years of decline, the official unemployment
rate remained above 20 percent and the real
level of unemployment was much closer to
one-third of the adjusted work force. There
are no realistic expectations that the struc-
tural causes of the lingering economic crisis
will be overcome by renewed growth. In the
political arena, prior to the November 1984
elections the statehood forces divided into
two parties, facilitating the election of pro-
Commonwealth candidate and former gov-
ernor, Rafael Hernhndez Col6n. This was a
historical inversion of the split within the
autonomist ranks, which in 1968 resulted in
the first pro-statehood governor, Luis Ferre,
gaining control of La Fortaleza. The 1984
elections revealed, too, what may be the
beginnings of a resurgence of the indepen-
dence vote, the result of crisis within the
major parties and also, perhaps, one of the
fruits of unification which has been the rally-
ing cry of the progressive independence
forces since the 1982 split in the PSP (Par-
tido Socialista Puertorriquefio), a Marxist-
oriented party.
The size of the overall independence vote
surprised most observers who had all but
written off the movement as a fringe of intel-
lectuals shouting into the wilderness.
Ruben Berrios, president of the PIP (Partido
Independentista Puertorriquefio), a social-
democratic party, was elected to the Senate
with one of the largest mixed votes on rec-
ord. David Noriega, also of the PIP, was
elected to the House. The PSP did not field
candidates, and though the party officially
took an abstentionist position, Carlos Ga-
llisa, the current general secretary, and Juan
Mari Bras, one of the founders of the PSP,
differed in their recommendations to un-
decided voters. Gallisa urged a vote for the
PPD, the pro-Commonwealth party, so as to
defeat statehood, while Mari Bras urged a
vote for PIP candidates.

A View from Britain
Of the rash of recent books on Puerto Rico
which attempt to understand the roots of
the economic and political crisis, Raymond
Carr's Puerto Rico: A Colonial Experiment


has attracted the most attention and criti-
cism. Carr, a distinguished British Latin
American specialist with no previous expe-
rience in Puerto Rico, was commissioned by
the Twentieth Century Fund to carry out a
study on US-Puerto Rican relations and
their impact on the island, after it was de-
cided that finding a North American or
Puerto Rican scholar "who had not already
made up his mind" would be impossible.
While this decision has incensed some
Puerto Ricans, Carr's book nonetheless
stands as one of the best in recent years.
A comparison of this study with Gordon
Lewis's classic and still instructive Puerto
Rico: Freedom and Power in the Carib-
bean, published two decades earlier, is un-
avoidable. Both are works by British citizens
for whom "imperialism" remains a mean-
ingful concept of intellectual discourse;
both evidence an uncommon comprehen-
siveness of scholarship and a breadth of
reading and understanding in other areas of
inquiry which enrich their analyses of
Puerto Rican reality; and both studies, while
broadly conceived and executed, are gener-
ally in the "old history" mold in that they
focus on political parties and the ideas and
machinations of, and the jockeying for
power among, the ruling elite. This is not
intended as a criticism; though Carr's work
ultimately may not have the staying power
of Lewis's book, both make contributions to
a fuller understanding of the complexities of
Puerto Rico's political, social, cultural and,
to an extent, economic realities.
If the Twentieth Century Fund hoped to
have a fundamental impact on US policy-
makers' view of US-Puerto Rican relations,
however, this is probably not the book
which will do it. For anyone with an interest
in contemporary Puerto Rico, on the other
hand, particularly those with some ground-
ing in Puerto Rican history, this is a valuable
contribution. The historical chapters in part
one provide a brief introduction up to 1952,
when Puerto Rico's "modern" history be-
gins with the creation of commonwealth
status. Carr is of the school which sees the
US annexation of Puerto Rico as an acci-
dent. It was Cuba that was the object of US
interest and conquest; Puerto Rico was but a


34/CAIBBEAN REVIEW





















































Rafael Herndndez Col6n campaigning at Luquillo.
poor sister obtained in the bargain with van-
quished Spain.
Carr discounts those analyses common
to many "Puerto Rican historians of inde-
pendentista inclinations and to revisionist
historians in the United States" which pin-
point US imperialism as the explanation for
the invasion of Puerto Rico being politically
inspired. This is but one example of Carr's
straightforward manner, and it is revealing
at the same time of his political persuasion
(another example is his claim that the warm
welcome extended to the US invasion forces
in 1898 "has embarrassed Puerto Rican pa-
triots" to this day), leaving little doubt that
he is a liberal non-Marxist. Carr seems to
worry very little whether his comments,
many quite offhanded, cause offense, per-
haps because as an outsider he felt no rea-
son to be diplomatic. He does fall too often
into his habit of being insulting and insensi-
tive (as, for example, in referring to Puerto
Rico as a "nation of paranoics"), perhaps for
effect, but also perhaps because the people


with whom he mingled, mostly from the
ruling elite, imparted to him their own feel-
ings of class inferiority and inadequacy.
Though the early chapters contain little
that is particularly new, Carr's rendering of
the history is spirited and sound. He does
not try to sanitize US relations with Puerto
Rico, noting, for example, that the Foraker
Act, which created a civilian government in
1900 after two years of military occupation,
"broke every principle in the US Constitu-
tion by failing to separate the executive and
legislative branches." Chapters on each of
the major status tendencies-association,
statehood, independence-are excellent,
particularly for Carr's rendering of the inter-
nal debates which have raged within the
parties defending these options. What is so
clearly related in these chapters, and in the
one on "internal decolonialization" as well, is
the dissatisfaction among all political ten-
dencies with the existing Commonwealth
status "chosen" by the voters in Puerto Rico
in 1952 (also see Caribbean Review, Winter


1984). Puerto Rico's status vis-a-vis the
United States has been the grand obsession
to the extent that the ruling elite is now
nearly all but immobilized politically.
As Carr perceptively points out, and as
Robert Anderson's contribution in the Heine
collection discusses in more detail, the rise
of the statehood forces until they now com-
mand slightly less than half the votes has
been, ironically, a consequence of the eco-
nomic program of the PPD. While Carr be-
lieves this has been due to the success of
industrialization, that is only partly true; the
urban poor who have been excluded from
economic life by Operation Bootstrap also
support the pro-statehood Partido Nuevo
Progresista (PNP). The rapid transition
from a rural agrarian economy to a man-
ufacturing and service economy undercut
the PPD's traditional electoral base. Workers
in the factories, banks and other support
institutions of a modern economy, as well as
many of the vast numbers of the idle and
underemployed, have found in the PNP


CAIBBEAN TFVIEW/35









their "natural" protectors. (The large Cuban
exile community also overwhelmingly sup-
ports the PNP but for other reasons, pri-
marily its virulent anti-communism.)
Carr also briefly examines the weak-
nesses of the economy and perceptively
recognizes, unlike many observers, that
even when Puerto Rico's economic prog-
ress made it a "showcase" for the United
States and for the benefits of cooperation
among small and large nations, the econ-
omy already showed signs of incipient crisis
for anyone willing to look closely enough.
Unfortunately, Carr counterbalances this
observation with a wrenching bit of sophis-
try: "The special advantages of 'colonial sta-
tus' and the federal lifeline have provided
the easy way out for Puerto Rico, diverting
its inhabitants from the harder task of pro-
ducing more and saving more than they
do." This is a nearly classic example of
blame-the-victim reasoning, even if Carr is
referring only to the elite.

Views from Puerto Rico
Carr's book can be likened to a mural: Its
sweep is wide, and one not only must stand
back from it to grasp all intricacies, one also
must bring to it some prior understanding.
On the other hand, The Puerto Rican
Question by Jorge Heine, who heads the
Caribbean Institute and Study Center for
Latin America at the Universidad Inter-


americana in San German, and Juan M.
Garcia-Passalacqua, a former aide to
Mufioz Marin and for years one of the most
interesting and intelligent political com-
mentators on the island, is much more like a
well-focused snapshot. The concern of this
short but exceptionally effective mono-
graph is to identify the essential elements
contributing to Puerto Rico's political and
economic crisis. Solving these involves, in
essence, a resolution of Puerto Rico's status
vis-a-vis the United States, itself not a novel
suggestion. What is valuable, however, is
how Heine and Garcia-Passalacqua sug-
gest this relationship be resolved. Besides
making positive and realistic proposals
about the status issue, this is one of the best
short introductions to Puerto Rican history,
economy, politics and culture I have seen.
Heine and Garcia-Passalacqua leave no
doubts about their perspective: Puerto Rico
is a colony of the United States. The short
period of economic success after World War
II was due to a fortuitous world economic
environment, while crisis in the economy
and society has been contained by the mas-
sive inflow of federal funds which maintain
consumption expenditures and keep the lo-
cal government afloat. By 1980, Wash-
ington was spending some $10 million a
day in Puerto Rico, three times greater on a
per capital basis than what the Soviet Union
was spending in Cuba! However, once the


fortuitous conditions of the world economy
evaporated, as they had by the early 1970s,
and once the federal spigot began to be
closed by President Reagan, the illusion of
the Puerto Rican economy as any kind of
showcase was shattered irreparably.
It is no challenge anymore to find fault
with Puerto Ricos economic model or its
political status. What is called for are cre-
ative solutions. Heine and Garcia-Passalac-
qua provide these in the last third of their
monograph. They recognize that some
things can, and must be done within the
existing status, because they need to be
done quickly. A priority must be a new de-
velopment policy, for which they provide six
concrete proposals, including a new tax
policy, greater industrial planning, a land tax
assessed at rates inverse to the level of land
use, guaranteed prices for local agricultural
products, a shift of tourist promotion away
from San Juan and out to the rest of the
island, and a rededication to labor-intensive
public works. Heine and Garcia-Passalac-
qua point out that the funds exist to carry
these tasks through to completion if only
the large financial deposits of US interna-
tional corporations now sitting idly in banks
could be mobilized.
The resolution of the status issue is inher-
ently more sticky than proposing changes
in the economic model, but it can no longer
be ignored. As Heine and Garcia-Passalac-


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qua, as well as other authors in the books
under review insist, Puerto Rico's colonial
status has become not just an explosive
international issue for the United States at
the United Nations, but it also is an issue
within Puerto Rico where it divides political
parties, dominates the political process,
and has brought the legislative process to a
virtual standstill. Characteristically, Heine
and Garcia-Passalacqua are forthright as to
the source of the status crisis: "The United
States has not stood by the principle of self-
determination," though lip-service is cer-
tainly paid the concept. The refusal of the
US Congress to act upon Puerto Ricds at-
tempts to negotiate change in the com-
monwealth status in 1953, 1959 and 1975
is evidence to support this claim. Given the
official US position that any status is accept-
able as long as Puerto Ricans clearly ex-
press their preference first, effectively
means that nothing can change: "In the
name of self-determination, Washington
shrugs off all responsibility for initiating
change in Puerto Rico's colonial status."
This pinpoints the essential element of
Heine's and Garcia-Passalacqua's strategy
for resolving the status issue. It is not Puerto
Ricans who must first decide their status
preference and come to the United States
only to have it rejected or altered; rather the
US Congress must first determine under
what conditions and with what special
provisions, if any, Puerto Rico could be-
come a state, an independent nation, or on
what basis of mutuality Puerto Rico would
remain a free associated state. It is thus the
responsibility of the United States to create
the environment in which, and the process
through which, Puerto Ricans can make a
status choice with the full knowledge that
the US Congress will accept it.
Garcia-Passalacqua treats many of these
same themes in his Puerto Rico: Freedom
and Equality at Issue. This is an intelligent,
well-researched and compelling commen-
tary on a society in profound crisis. As an
insider with access to Puerto Rico's ruling
elite, and with wide-ranging contacts in
Washington as well, Garcia has a fine-tuned
understanding of insular politics. As he
states, in a small island where the "average
citizen is now either a government em-
ployee ... or unemployed" the party in
power has vast power over jobs, patronage
and transfer payments which make political
allegiance a fuzzy concept. The first half of
the book sets the historical stage for the
second: the resolution of Puerto Ricds sta-
tus and its national reaffirmation.
Contrary to Carr's view, Garcia-Passalac-
qua sees a continuity in US expansionism
from 1898 to the present. The fundamental
problem is that the United States has been
unable to reconcile its "dream of democ-
racy and freedom" with its "dream of class
and empire." In the interests of decoloniza-
tion, which Garcia believes to be the funda-


mental issue confronting Puerto Rico, he
surveys older, but less well-known, and
newer studies of how other annexed territo-
ries either entered the federal union or, as in
the case of the Philippines in 1946,
achieved independence. He considers too
the characteristics of each current status
option, noting that the United States has not
been particularly adept, sympathetic or un-
derstanding of the intensity of feeling
around the status issue in Puerto Rico.
The internationalization of the status de-
bate since 1972 within the UN Decoloniza-
tion Committee, and in 1982 before the



The resolution of Puerto
Rico's status and the
quelling of adverse
international reaction
requires the United States
to identify in specific terms
what it is willing to accept
as viable status options.


General Assembly, has made the official US
position that Puerto Rico is an internal affair
of the United States increasingly anachro-
nistic, especially since all major parties on
the island have in essence disagreed with
that position. Garcia also notes that al-
though Cuba has led the movement to have
Puerto Rico declared a colony and thus sub-
ject to UN Resolution 1514 (xv) of 1960,
which requires that decolonization be initi-
ated, other Latin American nations, greatly
concerned about the question, are likely to
become more involved in the matter.
Garcia-Passalacqua reiterates his posi-
tion that the resolution of Puerto Ricds sta-
tus and the quelling of adverse international
reaction requires the United States to iden-
tify in specific terms what it is willing to
accept as viable status options. This posi-
tion, however, effectively concedes to the
colonial power the right to determine the
characteristics of decolonization. As such, it
hardly seems to be in the spirit of the UN
resolution. Still, taken as a whole, this is a
thought-provoking and challenging book.
Garcia-Passalacqua has a capacity to intel-
lectually stimulate, and the passion with
which he approaches issues related to
Puerto Rico fills the pages without ever
clouding his discussion.

Collected Views
The last two books under review are collec-
tions of essays presented at conferences.
Time for Decision, edited byJorge Heine, is
based on a conference held at the Woodrow


Wilson International Center for Scholars in
Washington, D.C., in 1981. Not all the pa-
pers which were presented are included in
this collection; some have been published
elsewhere (such as Jos& Villamil's article on
"the limits of dependent growth" and Miles
Galvin's contribution on the labor move-
ment). Robert Anderson begins the volume
by providing an update on the Puerto Rican
party system since the publication of his
justly famous book in 1965 (Party Politics
in Puerto Rico). The major changes have
been the rapid rise of the pro-statehood
PNP the equally rapid decline of the PPD,
and the end of its one-party dominance
over island politics.
Two of the more interesting articles focus
on the economy and, in particular, the im-
pact of federal transfer payments on the
economic and social structure. Elias
Gutierrez considers external financial flows
and the economic development strategy
("the conservative strategy") in which
Puerto Rico is "a mere regional extension of
the US economy." He shows the danger in
such a strategy: The functioning of the
economy has depended on both federal
transfer payments and external capital in-
flows to pay for what are essentially per-
petual balance-of-payments deficits. The
results are the dual problems of substantial
external ownership and control of the econ-
omy's productive resources, and the
emergence of an "urban ghetto" supported
by transfers from Washington.
Complementary to Gutierrez's contribu-
tion is Richard Weisskoff's analysis of the
impact of the federal food stamp program.
Extended to Puerto Rico in late 1974, food
stamps quickly became the biggest federal
program on the island as Puerto Rico be-
came the largest single recipient, account-
ing for 10-12 percent of all stamps
disbursed by the federal government. This
false "food stamp prosperity" keeps con-
sumption high and adds to aggregate de-
mand, though the spending ultimately and
quickly leaks from the local spending
stream. Food stamps have contributed to
the further destruction of agriculture, set in
motion by the Operation Bootstrap indus-
trialization strategy. They have also reduced
the supply of labor to agriculture and the
demand for locally-grown food products.
Weisskoff estimates that local agriculture
supplied but 13.3 percent of total food con-
sumption (by value) over the period
1975-80, compared to 38.3 percent in
1960. Further, food stamps contributed to
the substantial growth in food imports as a
share of total imports through the 1970s.
In 1982, the food stamp program in
Puerto Rico was converted into a cash (ac-
tually check) distribution program by the
Puerto Rican government with the approval
of the Reagan administration (it is now
called the Plan de Asistencia Nutricional,
Continued on page 46


CAIBBEAN FEVI6W/37











Pedro Pietri

What Is False Is Really True

A Review Essay by Barry Wallenstein


The Masses Are Asses, Pedro Pietri.
Waterfront Press, Maplewood, NJ., 1984.
Traffic Violations, Pedro Pietri. Waterfront
Press, Maplewood, N.J., 1983.
Puerto Rican Obituary, Pedro Pietri.
Monthly Review Press, New York and
London, 1973.
Loose Joints [recording]. Folkways
Records, New York, 1979.
In some circles spiraling out from New York
City neighborhoods, Pedro Pietri's self-des-
ignation as a "native New Yorker born in
Ponce, Puerto Rico," is famous and re-
garded as emblematic of this New York
poet. It accurately indicates the dual geo-
graphic and ethnic identities of Pietri-
poet, playwright and live performer. It also
points out his chief stylistic ploy--the easy
undermining of logic with contradictory
lines and phrases, sometimes paradoxical,
sometimes pure nonsense. When he says,
"what is false is really true," he is not evok-
ing Orwell's doublethink; his context is not
that fixed and his tone certainly is not that
grim. His utterances often resemble a co-
median's one-liners, even though he can
suddenly veer towards a Beckett-like sar-
casm inspired by his political and social
conscience.
Despite the extraordinary fact that Pietri's
first book of poetry, Puerto Rican Obituary,
has remained in print since 1973 (a tribute
to the appeal of his comic invective), he is
primarily known as a performing poet. Dur-
ing his shows he chants his poetry, break-
ing into bits of song and spinning off yards
of rhyme. His pauses and gestures convey
as much as his language.
The Folkways Records albums also reveal
what a friend of mine calls "the aesthetic of
Avenue A," which is more obvious in the
oral performance than in the printed text.
This aesthetic includes funky talk, the stock
of the current rappers; it also suggests irre-

Barry Wallenstein teaches English at City Uni-
versity of New York. He is the author of two
volumes of poetry, Beast Is a Wolf with Brown
Fire and Roller Coaster Kid, and a book on
poetry Visions and Revisions: An Approach to
Poetry.


verance towards the political and artistic
establishment. Often the pose is defiant, but
it is a defiance that can shift to elegy or
sympathy for the minorities and other vic-
tims of society's war. Built into this aesthetic
also is his declamatory style, brought to
earth by whimsy and a bent for absurdist
situations and weird configurations of
speech. Finally the aesthetic balances on
humor, and it is the ironic deadpan voice
that makes this clear. At its best the humor is
that of a stand-up comic with death and
protest as principal themes, even when pre-
tending an apolitical insouciance.
This is a commentary on one of his oral
performances: "Pedro Pietri, poet laureate
of the Young Lord's Party, appeared in his
trademark black attire, topped with the
party beret, and carrying a black attache
case. He placed the case on the stage so that
the white lettering on it could be seen: COF-
FINS FOR RENT As he began talking a
phone rang. He opened the case and pulled
out a white telephone receiver and answered
an office call. An explanation of the merits of
renting over buying coffins in these hard
times was followed by his classic 'Puerto
Rican Obituary.' Pedro's urban video-flash
surrealism sets you into a rolling laugh-
ter/horror. His rhythms, mixed Span-
ish/English/street stuff in 'Obituary,'
snapped the audience through a labyrinth
of anonymous, alienating, and yet ex-
tremely personal nightmares." (Thulani
Nkabinde Davis, "Known Renegades: Re-
cent Black/Brown/Yellow," in The Poetry
Reading, eds. Stephen Vincent and Ellen
Zweig, San Francisco: Momo's Press,
1981, p. 71.)
The nightmares may have been "per-
sonal," but the overall vision of this poetry is
communal/social protest from an insider's
experience. Like much of such poetry of the
1930s, Pietri believes that art and revolu-
tionary propaganda can mix. Beyond that, if
fine art need be sacrificed for political state-
ment and clarity, it is worth the sacrifice.
Even when not specifically directed,
Pietri's humor supports the underclass's
point of view. The jokes are an effort to put
pain at a distance and gain control over life's
miseries: In some circles 3 strikes / Don't


38/CAIBBEAN rTVEW


























entitle you to get out / You have to keep
feeling / You are being followed /Because
it isn't ajoke / To be published and broke.
This is from Traffic Violations, Pietri's new
book of poems, in which joking is a theme
or a thread (as it was in Puerto Rican Obitu-
ary) that holds together the two halves of
Pedro Pietri-the performer/clown and
the satiric political spokesman of his
community.
Even before the publication of Puerto
Rican Obituary, Pietri belonged to a group
of Puerto Rican poets committed to the oral
transmission of activist poetry. In the sum-
mer of 1970, Pietri and other Puerto Rican
poets took their poems around to Spanish-
speaking churches all over Manhattan. With
poets such as Jose Angel Figueroa, Ivan
Silen, Fl6ix Cortes, Alfredo Matilla, Jesus
Pappo Mel6ndez, and Etnairis Rivera, Pietri
read poems about culture conflict, poverty,
unequal treatment, racism, and human
sympathy and love.
The printed poems have not changed
much in the years between the two pub-
lished volumes. The concerns have re-
mained the same, and the range of feeling
and his special touch have not gone beyond
what we first saw. It is a very plain poetry, for
all its adventure into absurdism and surreal
imagery. Despite its thin texture, however,
when love and sympathy are heightened by
his rather wistful invective, the poetry can
be truly moving, as in "Love Poem for My
People": do notlet/artificial lamps / make
strange shadows / out of you / do not
dream / if you want your dreams / to
come true /you knew how to sing /before
you was / issued a birth certificate / turn
off the stereo / this country gave you / it is
out of order / your breath / is your prom-
iseland / if you want / to feel very rich /
look at your hands / that is where / the
definition of magic / is located at.
The well-placed, beautifully stated emo-
tion of this poem is also anticipated by the
book's title poem, "Puerto Rican Obituary,"
and the power comes from other than sim-
ply tenderness. On the recording Loose
Joints, the reading of "Puerto Rican Obitu-
ary" takes 12'/2 minutes. I mention this to
indicate the poem's special triumph as a


spoken chant. Even if only heard through a
silent reading from the page, it is that oral
quality that made it Pietri's quintessential
poem, famous as elegy and protest. Its em-
pathy for all deprived people is the poetry,
and there is enough range and pitch of voice
to make this chant convincing.
Listening to Pietri's reading, one feels the
fullness of his anger. On and off it sounds as
if he's fooling, but the deaths he catalogues,
the hatred, the inside view of impoverished
souls are very serious. The ones named are
dead and "were never alive." As with all vi-
sionaries, his heart, not the subtlety of his
head, carries the burden of his protest.
"Puerto Rican Obituary" begins with a
catalogue of protests against evil condi-
tions; it progresses with an attack against
the fraudulence of the American dream
"that sold them make-believe steak / and
bullet-proof rice and beans / all died wait-
ing, dreaming and hating." After much of
documentary value, there is the flat-out list,
intentionally uninventive: Juan /died wait-
ing for his number to hit / Miguel / died
waiting for the welfare check / to come
and go and come again / Milagros / died
waiting for her ten children / to grow up
and work / so she could quit working /
Olga / died waiting for a five dollar raise /
Manuel / died waiting for his supervisorto
drop dead / so he could get a promotion.
A few sections later these names gain the
power of elegiac heroes, albeit surrounded
by sarcasm, the urban lyric mode: They all
died / like a hero sandwich dies / in the
garment district / twelve o'clock in the
afternoon / social security number to
ashes / union dues to dust. And this strain
continues, reminiscent of the elegies of Fer-
linghetti and Kerouac of the mid-fifties.
They saw their names listed / in the tele-
phone directory of destruction / They
were train to turn / the other cheek by
newspapers / that misspelled mispro-
nounced / and misunderstood their
names / and celebrated when death
came / andstole theirfinal laundry ticket.
But then on the sixth page of the poem an
episode of a different kind unfolds. A for-
tune teller in Spanish Harlem is portrayed
and the poem turns to song with simple,


insistent rhythms: "Rise table rise table /
death is not dumb and disable." After this
melodic interlude the names come back,
now swathed in pathos. They are symbols,
more and more resonant. The poem's dra-
matic contour is most evident as the anger
builds, grows harsher and crescendoes,
"Because it is against the company policy /
to promote SPICS SPICS SPICS" and as the
poem moves towards its close the elegiac
gesture of recitative occurs beneath the an-
ger: And now they are together / in the
main lobby of the void / Addicted to si-
lence / Off limits to the wind / Confine to
warm supremacy / in long island ceme-
tery / This is the groovy hereafter Finally,
"Puerto Rican Obituary" is as much a plea
for ethnic awareness and self-assertion,
"and make their latino souls / the only re-
ligion of their race" as it is elegy or protest.
The poem ends with this couplet Aqui to
be called negrito / means to be called
LOVE.
Another long poem in Pietri's first collec-
tion is "O/D", an intensely compassionate
portrait/indictment of a drug addict's life.
As in "Puerto Rican Obituary" the structure
feels like an improvised unfolding. The
poem begins as if it were but a part of a
larger catalogue of strife, "and once again."
By seven pages into this free ramble, the
feeling produces a double judgment,
against the drug user and the climate that
produced him. The you is both specific and
general: you roll up yoursleeves /you see
a cemetery / located on your arms / you
are on the roof / of a condem building /
you are in the stairways / ofhousing pro-
jects / you are in the toilet / of your apart-
ment / taking an imaginary shit / for the
next few minutes / you are very skillful /
making sure the needle / is clean prepar-
ing the dope / for the cooker you are /
gifted when it comes to / shooting pus
into your / veins.
The graphic reality gives way to a more
richly textured poetry-surreal yet located
in precise emotions and judgments. The
surreal images alleviate an otherwise stale
invective: It is your birthday again / and
you're inside the cake / baked from the
flesh / of dead mice that fell / from your


CAIBBEAN FPVIEW/39






















mouth... The ending of the poem is direct
propaganda, which the poem has been
intending all along: Pray for the dead / all
the dead willpray foryou / keep shooting
up / and this will happen to you.
All through Puerto Rican Obituary the
bursts of anger inspire an idiom and an
attitude closely identified with jazz, as the
rhythms too are jazzy. His art is in letting the
language go-as if refinement were the en-
emy of his process. The sense of language
is more communal than unique.
In Traffic Violations Pietri is just as much
a rhymster, joker, protester, surreal image
producer, and pamphleteer of abbreviated
statements. The poetry's texture is not
much changed from Puerto Rican Obitu-
ary, but the ego on display seems more
grandiose. There are various sequences of
poems here, i.e., one "hangover" poem for
each month/day of the week. In fact the
entire collection could be read as one long
poem divided almost arbitrarily into sepa-
rate poems.
There is an odd, teasing relationship be-
tween the poet's ego and his need to joke or
make light of situations or personal atti-
tudes. In one of the hangover poems he
says, "I still remember many things / that
everybody else has forgotten" which is im-
mediately followed by, "to leave your apart-
ment / you must open the door first." Then
he calls himself "the only madman on the
street" who entertains with his jokes and is
"praised." He concludes the sentence "and
don't forget to mention / that on the 7th day
I rested." OK, his egotism is a manner not to
be regarded very seriously, but the attitude
doesn't always alleviate the emphasis on the
self: And remember how without me /
The night doesn't have a future / You
know you cannot sleep / Unless I am
there to keep you awake. This emphasis
might be a sigh or a sign of frustration, the
alienated spirit's difficulty locating itself. Not
that this in itself is objectionable-aliena-
tion has been a theme in modern poetry
from the confessionals to the beats, and
before that, from the Romantics to the pre-
Raphaelites.
Surrealism saves Pietri from a few of the
excesses such concentration on self could
lead to. He imagines leaving the city for no
real sensible reason, and he reveals: I know
I will miss myself very much / every sin-


gle second I am not around / but if I don't
get out of town / blank walls might be-
come blank walls / and that I cannot tol-
erate at all. We are led away from the
personal as the motivating force.
There is an innocence within all this talk
of himself, and whenever he directs out-
ward, as in a few love poems, the innocence
combines with ego to produce a modern-
day romanticism. Like all romantics-in
love or under the sway of a political notion-
Pietri regards himself as a "lunatic." I love
the unabashed last line of this passage from
"Conversation in a Darker Room": Who will
be loved madly all the time / During the
gentle and violent ceremony / Of losing
our minds to find each other / And take
credit for knowing everything / There is to
know about feeling terrific, and these last
lines of "June Hangover": That you and I
pronounce each other perfect / in the
most sincere phase of our passion / When
the excellent tears of childhood return.
But such romanticism, unmixed with the
often deep philosophical inspection and
discipline of the best of romantic poetry,
such as early Wordsworth or later Matthew
Arnold, can easily disperse into sloppy
vagueness: "being irrational / preservation
of the eternal self." This could be interpreted
as bragging, whereas other rhymes could
be the sweet, semi-mystical blather of greet-
ing cards: To be able to know each other /
Without having to exchange names /And
the songs sing themselves / And the
poems imagine their fame. In other words,
you takes your risks and you pays your
penalties. For much of this poetry-and the
savvy that comes off when Pietri speaks on
stage-I suspect he's able to wink at his
excesses with his easy, I-don't-give-a-
damn stance.
When the thrust veers in the other direc-
tion-away from the self-to social com-
mentary, the documentary line prevails,
showing how difficult it is to make original
poetry out of editorial statement: So they
decided to / Demolish the buildings / that
could have been / saved by renovation /
& eliminate the unity. The interesting last
line is not quite enough to make us forget
about the divisions between politics and art.
Perhaps the tendency to simplify in
poems of social protest in order to reach
more people has led to a certain careless-


ness in many of Pietri's poems. There are
numerous pretentious non-images or split-
off images. From Puerto Rican Obituary:
...unable to heal the wounds / on the
dead calendar of our eyes; Infants not
born yet played hide and seek / in the
cemetery of their imagination; hitting
your forehead/on the windshields / of all
your nightmares,-and in two different
poems, the famous "windows of our (or
your) mind" cliche. From Traffic Violations,
"the wet lips of eternity"; "empty rooms of
my dreams" etc.
Furthermore, the flip, self-deprecating
voice, while it may reflect a current preoc-
cupation with art about art, undermines all
effort at image building or narration. This
need to locate himself in the process of his
own making, through either a pose or a
convinced attitude, may, in fact, be a central
theme in all of Pietri's work. The search is
not easy for, as he says, things happen, like
expanding laughter, "for no apparent rea-
son." In the "7th Untitled Poem" of Traffic
Violations, the problem of being or non-
beingness is attacked head on-despite the
apparent nonchalance: I am not here now
/ Iam sure I am not here / Nor have I been
here before / Or after I have not been here.
I recognize the furniture. .The legs of the
chair are weaker/ than they were the last
time / I remember not being in this place
In another poem the existential theme is
further advanced: The smell of nothing is
present / in all the rooms of this place /
that has no face or feelings / to give good
news or bad news. And only a sad silence
could follow this admission: All I can truly
say about myself / is that after Monday
comes Tuesday. Other characters too fall or
faint on floors they "couldn't locate," as
Pietri's own state of mind informs his vision
of the world.
If there is a need to reconcile what seem
to me the less attractive aspects of his po-
etry-the lapses or indulgences-with the
certain strengths or dynamic elements of
his work, we may look again at Pietri the
performer-the fast-talking man of his
crowd, whose voice reaches out clearly and
sharply to an audience which cares more for
what he says and in what tone he says it,
than for the specific words he uses. Thus
the dramatic elements in his performances,
in his most effective poems, "Puerto Rican


40/CAIBBEAN I VIEW


t- 'Tk~B~:








Obituary" and "Suicide Note from a Cock-
roach in a Low Income Housing Project,"
and especially his plays, reach out to make
him a genuine spokesman for our time.
His most recent play, The Masses Are
Asses, premiered in early 1984 in Miriam
Col6n's Puerto Rican Traveling Theater in
Manhattan. His previously produced plays
include The Living Room and Lewlulu,
both directed by Jos6 Ferrer. I feel his new
play provides rewards matched only by the
best moments in the two poetry collections.
It contains the absurdist twists and turns,
the surreal nightmare grounded in so-
cial/political oppression, and the come-
dian's sense of how reality, from certain
angles, can be very funny after all.
This one-act play for two actors takes
place in a "fancy restaurant or an empty
apartment," and "the time is sometime last
week." The lady is "30 or 93," and the gen-
tleman is "93 or 30." So the setup is open
ended and anti-serious, as is the first move-
ment during which the two, after emerging
from the bathtub, sit at a small table and
compliment each other. Their compliments
are all nonsequiturs, a parody of politeness,
as they put off ordering dinner. Before long,
as if to deepen the texture of absurdity, he
offers her a surprise. He has secretly been
tape-recording their string of compliments.
They toast his ingenuity, and as they listen
to the rerun she exclaims, in Pinteresque


fashion, "Oh, how extremely exciting!" And
they toast again to the sound of their voices.
These are sophisticated, snobbish
voices-Pinter without the pauses. They are
on vacation in Paris; they represent the rul-
ing class and declare themselves invincible.
Even as some terrorist blasting sends them
hiding beneath the table, he says, "Our flaw-
less system is too organized and wise to be
destabilized." They bad-mouth poor people
as an exercise before dinner, and in the
background the bullets become bombs. He
says, "Long live the ruling classes"; she,
"God bless the very rich, always and for-
ever!" He, "Give me prosperity or give me
death!"
Here Pietri's ironic perspective seems a
little transparent but the play becomes
much more interesting in the next move-
ment, when these two agree to act the roles
of poor people talking street talk-all the
while feeling real anger as they still delay
ordering dinner. Then the drama really
changes and crackles when the lady won't
drop the street talk and reveals that they
really are hungry and trapped in this tene-
ment room (actually a bathroom) and in his
bizarre fantasy. He reverts back to high talk
and denial of reality as she pushes for some
admission of the real world.
What she calls his "head trip" may very
well symbolize the ruling class's avoidance
of social realities-the slow evolution of


truths. The male character gains in pathos
as he, like characters in the poetry, slips in
and out of reality. Great tension is created as
he refuses to drop his class pretenses. Total
passivity engulfs his character when he fi-
nally admits, "Life is a toilet." The room is
their cell: no exit. They don't know each
other's names. By the end, he does force her
back into his pretense, as they return to the
bathtub and sleep.
Pietri is at his best, in both his drama and
his poetry, when he can demonstrate his
deep connection with the people to whom
his work and his spirit should mean the
most. When he is able to do so in his poetry,
especially in shorter self-contained pieces
which don't rely on an accumulated dra-
matic effect, he can reach out to every
reader. "Forgetting to Water the Plants"
from the new book is particularly beautiful
in its freedom and imagination. At the same
time this work manages to be clearly rooted
in his ethnicity and connection to other
lives: A mother's heart has been broken /
Her children perished in midair / While
she sat under her hair dryer / To look her
best for the next time / She goes for a walk
in her apartment/As the woman is about
to pass out / A total stranger dressed in
black / Takes herout to dance aslow tune.
/ She smiles and calls off the funeral /
Because dead children are better / Than
having no children at all. O


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JAY R. MANDLE, TEMPLE UNIVERSITY
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PRG espoused. March 1985, 100 pp., $10.00


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CAI?BBEAN FEVIEW/41









Aruba
Continued from page 20



status aparte, we can say that fewer than 25
percent supported any kind of constitu-
tional link between the two islands. A cor-
relation of the first two questions revealed
fairly consistent attitudes: those favoring
complete independence also favored inde-
pendence vis-a-vis Curacao; while those
favoring status aparte were open to limited
cooperation with Curacao.
The third survey question asked voters
what kind of passport they preferred. The
five alternatives were: 1) Aruban; 2) Antil-
lean; 3) Dutch; 4) Venezuelan; 5) other. The
answers to this question clearly showed that
few Arubans were willing to give up
their Dutch passport: 68 percent preferred
a Dutch passport; 27 percent wanted an
Aruban passport, 3 percent Antillean and 2
percent other. (None apparently wanted a
Venezuelan passport.) When this question
was correlated with the first question, voters'
attitudes again appeared to be relatively
consistent. Those who favored indepen-
dence also favored an Aruban passport,
while those supporting status aparte
wanted to keep their Dutch passports. Over-
all, then, the survey results show that
the independence movement in Aruba
continues to be more of a separatist move-
ment than a full independence movement.
Aruba's complaint is with Curagao, not with
the Netherlands.
The leaders of the opposition parties
(PPA and AVP) have often stated that
Aruban society will become polarized if
MEP pursues its goal of independence.
Thus it is useful to analyze the survey data
to see whether there is a group whose
attitudes differ significantly from the aver-
age. When the electorate is divided in terms
of age, sex, education, labor union mem-
bership or race, we find no significant dif-
ferences in the distribution of responses to
the three questions when compared with
the overall trends. When the electorate is
divided along the lines of income, birth-
place, and length of residence on the island,
however, we do find differences. Those in
the highest income bracket ($1500 a
month or more), as well as those not born
on Aruba, tend to give greater support to
Aruba as part of an Antillean state than does
the electorate as a whole (22 percent and 30
percent respectively, versus 10 percent).
Those who claimed that their ancestors ar-
rived in Aruba before 1820 (the first wave of
settlers) favored independence to a greater
degree than the electorate as a whole (24
percent versus 12 percent).
The most significant differences oc-
curred in the category of political party
membership, explaining the statements


made by the opposition parties. A subsam-
ple, comprising 80 percent of the re-
spondents (those who had voted for a given
party in the most recent election and
planned to vote for the same party in the
next election) continued to reflect the over-
all strength of the parties (PPA, 12%; AVR
30%; MEP 58%.) As the table shows, MEP
voters were more supportive of indepen-
dence than the electorate as a whole, and
PPA voters were much less supportive. AVP
voters fell between PPA voters and the elec-
torate as a whole. The question of polariza-
tion thus appears to be based on party
rather than age, race, education, sex or in-
come. There are significant differences
between parties, especially between MEP
and PPA. However, one must remember
that PPA represents less than 15 percent
of the electorate, while MEP represents 60
percent.
In general terms, then, 90 percent of the
electorate supports status aparte or inde-
pendence. Essentially none of the electo-
rate wants to be part of an Antillean state,
even if Aruba is an equal partner with Cura-
gao. Similarly, most of the electorate (78
percent) wants little or no formal coopera-
tion with Curagao. At the same time, how-
ever, most (68 percent) want to keep their
Dutch passports. This may appear to be a
contradiction, but it is really the definition of
status aparte: Aruba should be indepen-
dent of Curagao but maintain close ties with


the Netherlands. Unfortunately, the Nether-
lands is no longer interested in such ties.
The proposed constitutional future for
Aruba-status aparte from 1986 to 1996
and independence thereafter-is compati-
ble with the goals of MEP Aruba's majority
party; however, the electorate as a whole
would prefer to stop with status aparte.
Even half of the MEP voters prefer status
aparte to complete independence, indicat-
ing serious concern about the viability of an
independent Aruba whose economy has
been dependent on tourism and the Exxon
refinery. With the losing of the refinery, this
concern is even stronger.
The recent economic crisis has resulted
in demands by political leaders in Curacao
for the abandonment of the Round Table
Conference agreement and for The Hague
to drop its goal of independence for the
Antilles. In Aruba, however, MER AVP and
influential business leaders have argued
that the crisis is all the more reason why
Aruba should proceed withstatus aparte in
1986. Aruba, it is argued, could better solve
its problems without having to deal with
Curagao. The question of independence in
1996 is a different matter. While Betico
Croes and MEP remain publicly committed
to independence, there is an underlying
suggestion that as 1996 draws near Aruba
will attempt to extend the status aparte
transition, or even make it permanent, re-
gardless of the state of the economy. [


42/CAorBBEAN IVIEW


Party Differences

MEP AVP PPA Overall

Desired Constitutional Structure
Independence 16 5 12
Associated state 34 23 6 26
Status aparte 50 55 34 52
Equal partners 17 51 10
President state 9 1



Aruba-Curacao Relationship
Independence 74 36 14 56
Limited cooperation 19 28 23 22
Strong cooperation 7 32 46 20
Current relationship 5 17 3



Passport Desired
Aruban 43 7 27
Antillean 6 3 3
Dutch 55 84 97 68
Venezuelan 1 -
Other 2 2 2


Figures rounded to nearest percent.









Paradise
Continued from page 23



only a matter of income. The social environ-
ment creates constant pressures to con-
sume. The advent of tourism and television
in Aruba (both now also coming from Vene-
zuela) has strongly reinforced the strong
desire for material goods as status symbols.
Nevertheless there are some changes ap-
parent. While tastes in food and consump-
tion generally shifted towards the "ham-
burger" culture of the United States, there
has been a steady demand for traditional
crops. Similarly, although Arubans for many
years rejected the peasant cottages of the
past for modern air conditioned housing,
they are increasingly seeking older housing
for modernization.
The question remains, though, in what
sense can the island support this revived
interest in the older ways? Although many
traditional and modern homesteads today
grow a small amount of vegetables and fruit
and a good number grow maize or keep
goats, all of this activity is informal. Some
recent attempts to organize it into an allot-
ment system are too embryonic to be evalu-
ated. Commercial agriculture is primarily
the battery farming of chickens and pigs or
the spasmodic attempts to introduce mod-
ern techniques such as hydroponics. Be-
cause of the ease with which cheap produce
can be "dumped" from Venezuela or
shipped in from the United States, the
maintenance of a commercial agriculture
sector is difficult. In addition, the tradition of
working the land for a living is unpopular in
Aruba, as in many other Caribbean so-
cieties, reflecting the alienation instilled
by the plantation tradition, the lack of in-
come provided by farming, and the low es-
teem placed on this activity by the new
dominant culture.

Present Realities
This brief discussion might suggest that the
question of return to traditional values is
passe, or that the situation is beyond the
point of no return. First, the ecology of the
island is probably unable to support more
than a few thousand people without consid-
erable time, effort and expenditure. Second,
this style of life no longer seems consistent
with people's aspirations despite the com-
monly expressed sentimentality for a by-
gone age. However, there are a number of
reasons that further investigation is war-
ranted, not the least of which is that the
economy may no longer be able to support
all islanders in the manner to which they
have become accustomed. Beyond this,
some evidence indicates that acculturation
has been incomplete. Most important is the
marginalization of many traditional


Arubans from the dominant work environ-
ment. Although Indo-Arubans are to be
found at all levels in the private and public
sectors, the relatively few in management
positions compared to Euro-Arubans, or in
skilled and middle-management jobs com-
pared to Windward Islanders is evident. Typ-
ically their formal employment is in less
responsible jobs; even today this group is
trying to bridge the gap between traditional
and modern modes of work.
There are several possible alternatives for
the future of Aruba, from more rapid mod-
ernization to a more leisurely pace of devel-
opment. Despite the bounty of material



The economy may no
longer be able to support
all islanders in the manner
to which they have become
accustomed.


well-being brought to the island by the re-
finery, a sentiment often expressed is that
the refinery has undermined the earlier,
more idyllic way of life. The question arises,
therefore, whether the departure of the oil
refinery could not provide an opportunity
for some redirection of development which
is more in keeping with the traditional val-
ues of the community.
With the departure of the refinery it is
possible that Arubans may experience
greater pressure to conform to international
patterns of work (in an effort to maintain
their living standards) or, alternatively, may
find an opportunity to reorient their work
patterns towards those which are less in
conflict with traditional values. A vital ques-
tion is in what sense the contradiction
between old and new exists in the psycho-
logical make-up of modernized indigenous
communities. For instance, one hypothesis
would be that a process of enforced rapid
change, such as that experienced by Indo-
Arubans, demands a dual mind-set-a
conscious or unconscious schizophrenia-
which enables individuals to operate within
the externally-imposed work environment
while retaining their memory and use of
traditional reality. In some cases this com-
partmentalization may work very well. For
example, a Dutch-trained Aruban nurse
may perfectly well "act out" the doctor's
instructions for administering to a patient;
but that same nurse may also advise the
patient in the traditional cures. The first be-
havior is "playing the game"; the second is
reality.
This suggests that for some people there
may be a very clear distinction between
their two cultures-as sharp, complete and
consistent as two distinctive languages, but


without the ability to translate between
them. Others may integrate the two compo-
nents; even if they cannot totally reconcile
contradictions, they are able to recognize
and accommodate them. Still others nei-
ther integrate nor compartmentalize well;
these typically face the greatest difficulties.
To the extent that a clear and consistent
memory of the traditional culture remains,
it is possible that reemphasizing that culture
largely entails switching to another frame of
mind. Provided the appropriate physical
and social environment exists, this may in-
deed be possible.
The stepping back to reconnect with the
past may be also an important step forward
for a culture whose progress has been
blocked or overwhelmed by the imposition
of an external regime. Once more coherent
points of contact between the old and new
are established, the foundation for more
self-determined development is laid. In the
short run at least there are some difficult
trade-offs to be made, even though a more
agreeable way of life could emerge. Whether
this is acceptable depends in large part on
the extent to which Arubans today identify
with their Indian past. D


CA, BBCAN

rEVI W AWARD

We are pleased to accept nominations
for the seventh annual Caribbean Review
Award, an annual presentation to honor an
individual who has contributed to the ad-
vancement of Caribbean intellectual life.
Previous winners were Gordon K.
Lewis, Philip M. Sherlock, AimB C6saire,
Sidney W. Mintz, C.L.R. James, and Arturo
Morales Carri6n.
Nominations are to be sent to the Editor,
Caribbean Review, Florida International
University, Miami, Florida 33199. Nomina-
tions must be received by 15 February
1986. The seventh annual Caribbean Re-
view Award will be announced at the 11th
annual conference of the Caribbean Stud-
ies Association in Caracas, Venezuela,
May 28-31, 1986.
The Award Committee consists of:
Lambros Comitas (chairman), Columbia
University, New York; Fuat Andic, Univer-
sidad de Puerto Rico, San Juan; Locksley
Edmonson, Cornell University, Ithaca,
New York; Anthony P. Maingot, Florida In-
ternational University, Miami; and Andr6s
Serbin, Universidad Central de Venezu-
ela, Caracas.
The award recognizes individual effort
irrespective of field, ideology, national ori-
gin, or place of residence. The recipient
receives a plaque and an honorarium of
$250, donated by the International Affairs
Center of Florida International University.


CAI?BBcAN PEVIEW/43























* 60 courses on Latin America and the Caribbean each academic year; language training in Spanish, Portuguese
and Haitian Creole; translation and interpretation program.
* 60 faculty specialists in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences and professional schools.
* Courses and faculty on two campuses: Tamiami in Southwest Dade and Bay Vista in North Miami.
* Certificate in Latin American and Caribbean Studies; business and economics degree/certificate programs.
* Master's degree programs in international studies, economics and international business.
* Cooperative programs with Schools of Nursing, and Public Affairs and Services.
* Lectures by distinguished visiting scholars; art exhibits, film series and other extracurricular activities.
* Summer study in Latin America.
* Latin American and Caribbean Students' Association.
* Annual workshops for public school teachers and journalists.
* Monthly discussion groups with members of business, banking and legal communities.
* Central American Research Program.
* Founding member, with Department of Economics, of IESCARIBE (Institute of Economic and Social Research of
the Caribbean Basin).
* Faculty exchanges with University of the West Indies Institute of International Relations.
* Conferences on foreign investment and economic growth in Latin America; Caribbean Basin economic conditions;
Honduras; the social context of crisis in Central America; immigration and refugee policy.

Library collection rich in area-related materials, particularly for the Caribbean and Central America. Latin American
and Caribbean Reading Room housing special collections, bibliographic and reference materials, newspapers,
government documents, and publications of international organizations.

Multidisciplinary research emphasizing the Caribbean Basin; ongoing faculty projects on migration, Cuban oral
history, Honduras, US foreign policy in the Caribbean, urban environment and health, social and occupational
stratification in Argentina and Costa Rica, the Amazon.

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

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Faculty


Irma Alonso, Economics; Carlos Alvarez, Education; Ewart
Archer, International Relations; Gabriel Aurioles, Technology;
Ken I. Boodhoo, International Relations; Jerry Brown,
Anthropology; Manuel Carvajal, Economics; Isabel
Castellanos, Modern Languages; Janet Chernela,
Anthropology; Forrest Colburn, Political Science; Roberto
Cruz, Economics; Leonel de la Cuesta, Translation and
Interpretation; Grenville Draper, Physical Sciences; Nancy
Erwin, International Relations; Luis Escovar, Psychology;
Robert Farrell, Education; Maria Jose Fernandes
Willumsen, Economics; Gordon Finley, Psychology; Charles
Frankenhoff, Health Services; Hugh Gladwin, Sociology;
Fernando Gonzalez-Reigosa, Psychology; Marian Goslinga,
Library; Lowell Gudmundson, History; Jerry Haar,
International Business; John Jensen, 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; Jocelyn T. Marie Levy, Modern
Languages; Jan Luytjes, International Business; Anthony P.
Maingot, Sociology; Luis Martinez-P6rez, Education; James
A. Mau, Sociology; Florentin Maurrasse, Physical Sciences;
Ram6n Mendoza, Modern Languages; Raul Moncarz,
Economics; Marta Ortiz, Marketing; John Porges,
International Banking; William Renforth, International
Business; Ana Roca, Modern Languages; Leonardo
Rodriguez, International Business; Mark B. Rosenberg,
Political Science; Cheryl A. Rubenberg, Political Science; Luis
P. Salas, Criminal Justice; Jorge Salazar, Economics;
Reinaldo Sanchez, Modern Languages; Philip Shepherd,
International Business; Alex Stepick, Anthropology; George
Sutija, International Banking; Mark D. Szuchman, History;
Anitra Thorhaug, Biology; Manuel Torres, Visual Arts;
William T. Vickers, Anthropology; Jose T. Villate, Technology;
Maida Watson Espener, Modern Languages; Mira Wilkins,
Economics; Florence L. Yudin, Modern Languages.


Latin American and Caribbean Center










Ruins
Continued from page 29

find for the old fisherman who was to be at
the center of the play. So he drove out to a
fishing village, talked to some men who
were mending their nets, asked their names,
and finally chose one of them, which had
that special, desired African sound: "Afa."
Only much later, after the play was pub-
lished and produced, did Walcott learn that
the name this man's parents had given him,
as recorded in his baptismal documents,
was "Arthur."
Marshall Sahlins has been reminding an-
thropologists and historians that different
structures of history always accompany dif-
ferent structures of thought and language:
"other times, other customs," as he recently
put it. And Rolph Trouillot, writing specifi-
cally about Haitian historical discourse,
helps bring such abstractions down to
earth by analyzing the semantic structure of
Haitian Creole in order to demonstrate that
the very idea of "revolution," in the Western
sense, takes on a different tonality in that
language, where the notion of "newness"
can only apply to inanimate objects; the
North American concept of taking a "new"
wife or getting a "new" job is envisioned in
Haitian Creole, rather, as getting "another"
of each. Trouillot argues persuasively that
this semantic feature has significant im-


Logjam
Continued from page 33


Assembly of the Commonwealth of Puerto
Rico expressly consents thereto in the man-
ner prescribed in the constitution of the
Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, for the en-
actment of a law." It is not clear whether
Congress had the provisions of Section 9 of
the Puerto Rican Relations Act in mind.
Does it matter now?
Perhaps the practitioner to whom the
drafting of the complaint and ultimately the
Supreme Court brief, is entrusted, may very
well consider the precedent of Congres-
sional practice (in spite of some being to the
contrary) as an additional argument in favor
of the necessity to obtain Puerto Rican con-
sent to change the conditions under which
the Commonwealth status came into being.
Perhaps even a constitutional argument
could be constructed. If indeed the Com-
monwealth process was in the nature of a
compact, amendments or revisions to
which require the assent of the affected par-
ties, then the argument could be made that
Puerto Rico was not afforded due process
and therefore the actions of Congress in
amending Section 936, or the provisions on
the rebate of the excise tax on alcoholic
beverages, were unconstitutional.


plications for Haitian understandings of the
nature of what Western historians view as
"sudden" historical change.
All this suggests that we haven't spent
enough time living with and listening to
rural Caribbean people to grasp the ways
that they approach the world they share with
us. In the social science literature we don't
hear nearly enough Caribbean voices, and
certainly not enough nonmiddle-class Ca-
ribbean voices. Of course there's Don Taso
(Mintz's worker-in-the-cane collaborator
from Puerto Rico) and a few others, includ-
ing now some of my Saramaka historian
friends. But the fact remains that until very
recently, all too many anthropological and
oral historical studies in the Caribbean were
based on startlingly brief and superficial
fieldwork and interviews.
Wilson Harris has criticized, by implica-
tion, the intellectual West Indian perspective
that stresses an absence of ruins or a sense
of utter pastlessness in the folk thought of
the Caribbean; and he has called explicitly
on historians and anthropologists to seek
out "an inner time," to break out of the tradi-
tional "high-level psychological censorship
of the creative imagination" that has
hamstrung critical Caribbean scholarship.
One might argue that both Harris and I
merely represent a romantic, populist his-
torical position, wishing that Caribbean
peoples and their pasts were something
they are not. But in my view more investiga-

Similarly, a constitutional argument
could possibly be crafted which, admittedly
novel, would be along the following lines:
The Congress of the United States in enact-
ing Public Law 600 did so under the ter-
ritorial clause of the Constitution. Once so
used, it became in effect a self-imposed
limitation on Congress's power to further
legislate with respect to the conditions un-
der which it allowed Puerto Rico to become
self-governing. Such a limitation on its
power could be considered analogous to
the Congressional enactments admitting
states to the Union. And while Puerto Rico is
not a state, nevertheless the Congressional
process could be considered to be of equal
standing in that it also determined the rela-
tionship between the United States and
Puerto Rico. Public Law 600, in the nature
of a compact, provided that the perma-
nency of the relationship and the conditions
under which it is established could only be
altered by consent of both parties.
Again referring to the admission of a state
as an analogous situation, once statehood
had been conferred on a territory and the
territory accepted into the Union, Congress
was without power to alter the relationship.
In the case of Puerto Rico, Congress, once
having gone through the Commonwealth
process, was without power to change
either the relationship or the conditions un-
der which it came into effect. (For a com-


tors need to strip away their traditional cul-
ture-bound assumptions and treat Carib-
bean historical thought with the same
sophistication they are bringing to historical
thought in other parts of the world. I suspect
that as we begin to trace the distinctive
contours of Caribbean historical thought
(what people care about, the ways they se-
lect, package, and transmit their knowl-
edge), we may be in for some surprises.
And there may well come a day in the not-
too-distant future when we may begin to
trace in a serious way the differing shapes of
historical thought among members of dif-
ferent Caribbean classes and cultural
groups.
As Sidney Mintz has long argued, the
Caribbean often seduces and confuses
North American researchers precisely be-
cause of its apparent similarity to their
home societies. In many ways the Carib-
bean is startlingly "modern"; in seven short
years it will "celebrate" its 500th anniversary
as a continuously colonized part of the
modern world system. Yet the rural Carib-
bean remains a place where history is pre-
served in ways that are constantly
surprising from an outside point of view,
and we ought never to underestimate what
Harris calls its "creative imagination." After
all, as Trouillot reports, in rural Haiti in con-
texts connoting sexual prowess, one of the
terms used for the male sexual organ is
Dessalines. O

prison of the processes leading to
statehood and other territorial status
changes seeExperiences ofPast Territories
Can Assist Puerto Rico Status Delibera-
tion, GAO Report to Congress, GGD-80-26,
March 1980.)
I do not wish it to be understood that my
arguments are based solely on legal prece-
dent or technicalities. Regardless of past
precedent, equity demands that Puerto
Rico cannot be considered a colony, an im-
perial possession of the United States. More
than 30 years of a relationship which came
into being through actions taken by both
parties, and which the United States has
recognized time and time again as remov-
ing Puerto Rico from the status of a territory,
cannot simply be wiped off the slate.
Just as in Brown u Board of Education,
regardless of what the past may have held,
while today the Supreme Court recognizes
that Puerto Rico has a unique, unparalleled
position in the federal system, tomorrow it
will establish that it is one which cannot be
unilaterally altered by the Congress without
consent of the governed. A decision to this
effect will put to rest, once and for all, the
canard raised by the enemies of the United
States that we are an imperialistic power
subjugating the people of Puerto Rico, and
would allow Puerto Rico and the United
States to march in unison to determine their
destiny. O


CARfBBEAN IEVIEW/45









Status
Continued from page 37




or PAN). As Guy E Smith's contribution to
the Bloomfield collection discusses in de-
tail, the level of payments for the new pro-
gram has been cut by about 25 percent, as
they are now made in the form of a block
grant from the federal government in a fixed
amount of $825 million, regardless of the
number of eligible recipients. Despite this
change, which may have important long-
run consequences for nutrition, Weisskoff's
sophisticated analysis is the most complete
and easily accessed study available on the
impact of the food supplement program.
The last section of Time for Decision
focuses more directly on the status issue.
Bertram Finn, an official in the Romero ad-
ministration, considers what is necessary
for Puerto Rico to become a state, including
what are sure to be controversial "transition
measures," particularly the assumption of
Puerto Ricds external debt by the federal
government. Luis Davila's and Nelida Jime-
nez's review of the history of the admission
of other territories into the union comple-
ments Finn's perspective. They believe that
the only solution to "Puerto Ricds colonial


reality" is statehood, itself the logical and
natural conclusion to the granting of citizen-
ship in 1917. This, unfortunately, is a
twisted argument, even for lawyers: The in-
habitants of a colonial possession are first
obliged to accept the citizenship of the met-
ropolitan power; then, it is suggested, the
way out of this continuing colonial relation is
to culminate the colonial relation by assim-
ilating the colonized into the metropolis as
an integral part of the national territory. This
is a logical conclusion only in that it ratifies
the colonial status in the ultimate legal
sense.
Puerto Rico: The Search for a National
Policy brings together papers presented at
a conference in late 1983, sponsored by the
World Peace Foundation of Boston. This
volume strives to affect policy on Puerto
Ricds status not by arguing for any particu-
lar option but by pointing "the way toward
action." Richard J. Bloomfield, the editor,
takes the stand, as do Heine and Garcia-
Passalacqua, that it is the responsibility of
the United States to take self-determination
seriously, not by waiting for the colony to
decide its status preference in an environ-
ment of uncertainty, but by initiating the
process of decolonization itself.
Among the many contributions, Luis
Nieves Falc6n's "The Social Pathology of
Dependence" is a sobering look at the
human costs of the failure of Puerto Rico's


political and economic institutions. Nieves
Falc6n argues that the "pathological struc-
ture of dependence" inhibits the ability of
the Puerto Rican people to seek a way out of
the crisis; change itself is feared. The pres-
ent is bad enough; a possibly worse un-
known, like independence or statehood, is
nearly unthinkable. The people see them-
selves as essentially powerless, lazy and
passive, a self-perception fully compatible
with continued US domination. Nieves
Falc6n does more than rhetorically address
the impact of dependence and cultural im-
perialism; his analysis is based on survey
data and interviews. The observations de-
rived from this research on how Puerto
Ricans view themselves are disturbing, at
best, and frightening at their worst.
A primary axis of Puerto Rico's industrial-
ization strategy has been local tax exemp-
tion and special treatment in the federal tax
code of profits earned in Puerto Rico by US
corporations. Understanding the complex-
ities of the federal tax provisions and their
purposes is no easy matter. The article by
Peter R. Merrill, however, provides a superb
historical overview of federal tax exemption
for US corporations operating in US territo-
ries, and of the changes in the law since
1976 which affect primarily Puerto Rico, the
location of nearly all the corporations oper-
ating under the "possessions corporations"
provision of the federal tax code. Merrill


46/CAIBBEAN REVIEW








makes the useful suggestion that, in the
short run at least, special tax treatment for
Puerto Rico could be made more palatable
to the US Congress and less a target for
revision if it could be shown to be creating
jobs on the island and not just draining the
US Treasury. From a different angle, Miguel
Lausell objects in his article that the US
Congress views tax exemption in Puerto
Rico from a much too narrow economic
benefit/cost perspective. The advantages
to US foreign policy and national security
of a successful economy and social tran-
quility in Puerto Rico need to be considered
as well.
Randolph Mye's chapter on economic de-
velopment suggests new policies, some of
which echo those of Heine and Garcia-Pas-
salacqua. He returns to Mufoz Marin's ar-
gument of the late 1940s that status should
not be the issue: "economic development
should come first" if there ever is to be a
rational discussion of feasible status op-
tions. One extremely important point Mye
makes is that Washington must treat Puerto
Rico as a special case. The extension of
federal programs to the island does not
have the same effect as on the mainland.
More spending in Puerto Rico does not
stimulate production because the supply
for the local market is, to a great extent,
external. Local demand is articulated to an
external supply source; local supply is artic-
ulated to an external demand source. More
federal spending without constructive mea-
sures to advance the degree of articulation
through the progressive linking of local
supply and local demand will simply per-
petuate the structural crisis. This is a funda-
mental barrier that any viable economic
policy must break through.
Robert Pastor provides an excellent over-
view of the "summer ritual"--the annual
bringing before the United Nations of
Puerto Ricds status as a US colony-and its
meaning for the United States. He believes
the cost in terms of lost international pres-
tige, not to mention more tangible costs, far
exceeds the benefits of continuing to fight
the "Puerto Rico is an internal matter" bat-
tle. The United States is in the minority on
this issue, even though its strong-arm tac-
tics have kept the problem contained so far.
Pastor suggests that what is needed now is a
policy of "mutual determination" in which
both sides, the United States and represen-
tatives of all status options in Puerto Rico,
work out mutually acceptable alternatives to
the current status. Then the United States
would transfer sovereign power to Puerto
Rico where, after three months a vote would
be taken to determine which of the status
options Puerto Ricans desired, with the full
knowledge prior to voting that all were ac-
ceptable to the United States.
The last chapter of the Bloomfield collec-
tion includes statements by representatives
from four of the five major parties (the PSP


is not represented). The most interesting is
by Fernando Martin of the PIP for it effec-
tively states the independence defense in a
compelling and rational manner, regardless
of one's own position. While the general
perspective of most authors on the resolu-
tion of the status issue requires the United
States to make clear what options it is will-
ing to accept, Martin argues that the only
way for the United States to decolonize is to
make Puerto Rico independent. He dis-
agrees with the argument that this violates
the principle of self-determination: "Have
we become so jaded that we are willing to
characterize the emancipation of the slaves
as an imposition? Or to think that eman-
cipation should have been subject to a
method of 'self-determination' in which the


slaves might have opted to renounce their
right to freedom?" This is a tough moral
argument. Decolonization can only be
completed by the unilateral granting of in-
dependence. Marin does not close the door
on discussions with the United States about
the terms of independence; in fact, such
discussion is essential. It is just that any
discussion must focus, not on the process
of decolonization as Heine and Garcia-Pas-
salacqua, for example, insist, but on its sub-
stance: independence.
Until now the United States has taken the
position that what happens in Puerto Rico is
up to Puerto Ricans. No one reading these
five new studies, with their insight into cur-
rent thinking about Puerto Rico's political
and economic crisis, can still believe that. O


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CARBBEAN P'EI1W//47










First Impressions


Critics Look at the New Literature


Compiled by Forrest D. Colburn


A Pessimistic Picture
Dependency under Challenge: The
Political Economy of the Commonwealth
Caribbean, Anthony Payne and Paul
Sutton, eds. 295 p. Manchester University
Press, Dover, New Hampshire, 1984.

Dependency under Challenge "seeks to
demonstrate how in the 1970s the states of
the Commonwealth Caribbean individually
and collectively sought to counter" their de-
pendency and poverty. It presents 10 case
studies organized around three levels of for-
eign economic strategy: the national, re-
gional and international.
At the national level, four detailed cases
are presented; Jamaica under Michael Man-
ley, Guyana in the era of "cooperative social-
ism," Trinidad and Tobago during the long
reign of Eric Williams and Grenada under
the New Jewel Movement (written before
the American invasion). While Trinidad and
Tobago was able to pursue a successful
"management" strategy by virtue of its
position in world petroleum markets, Ja-
maica and Guyana-attempting similar
strategies-failed to alter or even manage
their dependency. According to Paul Sutton
in the conclusion of this volume, Grenada's
conflictual strategy of "confronting" depen-
dency was the most successful, although
the precise nature of success is not carefully
specified.
Regionally, the sources of success, and
more prevalent failure, of industrial pro-
gramming and agricultural cooperation in
CARICOM are analyzed. At the international
level, relations between the Commonwealth
Caribbean and the United States, the EEC,
hemispheric middle powers, and the Third
World within the context of the New Interna-
tional Economic Order are examined in
some detail.
While all of the cases are well written and
interesting to a relative neophyte, long-term
observers of the Caribbean political econ-
omy would, I suspect, find little new or note-
worthy. More seriously, outside of a loose
association with dependency theory-itself
a vague and ambiguous literature, Depen-
dency under Challenge lacks any theoreti-
cal or analytical framework. No attempt is
made to specify the range or types of strat-
egies available to dependent nations in gen-
eral or Caribbean countries in particular.
Nor is any effort made to explain why the
Forrest D. Colburn teaches political science at
Florida International University.


four countries examined chose different
strategies when faced with similar situations
of dependency.
At a more practical level, the lack of suc-
cess chronicled at the national, regional and
international levels offers few policy recom-
mendations to decision makers in the Com-
monwealth Caribbean. Possessing too little
power internationally and lacking the fun-
damental economic complementarity nec-
essary for regional integration, only
Grenada's confrontationalist strategy ap-
peared to hold much promise for overturn-
ing dependency among Commonwealth
Caribbean countries. After the recent Amer-
ican invasion, however, the limits of con-
frontation in the Caribbean are obvious.
DAVID A. LAKE
University of California
Los Angeles, California

Sandinista Socialization
La montafia es algo mis que una
inmensa estepa verde, Omar Cabezas.
2nd ed. 259 p. Editorial Nueva Nicaragua,
Biblioteca Popular Sandinista, Managua,
1983.

This tale of growing up Sandinista has
50,000 copies in print, has been written up
as a news story in the New York Times,
comes highly recommended by such Latin
literary heavyweights as the late Julio Cor-
tazar and Manlio Argueta, and there are re-
ports of an English translation in the works.
All of this attention is being bestowed on a
work by a previously obscure and un-
published comandante in his early thirties,
who did not even "write" the book but rather
talked it into his tape recorder. What he told
the tape recorder emerges between book
covers as an engaging, sensitive, and ro-
mantic memoir, complete with the sound
effects of spoken language.
We follow Omar Cabezas from his child-
hood days in Le6n, through his days as a
student activist, and leave him as a hard-
ened guerrilla fighter in the mountains of
northern Nicaragua in 1975 (he has prom-
ised a second installment to cover the years
from 1975-1979). On the way the reader/
listener is given tales of hardship, sources of
revolutionary inspiration, and quite a few
funny stories that add up to a valuable ac-
count of the history the Sandinistas were
writing in the mountains while Somoza was
convincing everyone else that he was the
only history Nicaragua would ever have.


Cabezas first became attracted to the
Frente in 1968, the summer after he gradu-
ated from high school. He became steadily
more involved during his university days,
where he seems to have majored in the
formation of revolutionary cells. By early
1973 he had exhausted his effectiveness
above ground and went to the mountains,
which had already assumed a mythical di-
mension in his mind. The city boy had to
walk 15 days to get to his first guerrilla train-
ing camp, and that was only the first step in
the making of "the new man." To the fledg-
ling freedom fighters the "new man" was
not an empty slogan but what they were
changing into through isolation, hunger,
sexual deprivation, and hard-won mastery
of the forest environment; They forged
themselves into the missionaries of a cult of
liberation, combining warrior fierceness to-
wards the oppressors with parental tender-
ness towards the oppressed. A part of this
molding was the constant political and eco-
nomic education. Cabezas describes one
scene that is etched in his own memory.
While his band was hiding out from an in-
tense search by the National Guard, subsist-
ing on three teaspoons of powdered milk
per meal, not allowed to use their covers
against the mountain cold for fear of losing
them in sudden combat, Henry Ruiz, now
Minister of Planning, lay in his hammock
reading Ernest Mandel's Political Economy
as intently as any armchair socialist in his
study.
Cabezas also discovered that Sandino
was still very much alive in at least a few
campesino memories. One 82-year-old
peasant, upon meeting his first reincar-
nated Sandinista, says excitedly, "I knewyou
were going to come by again" and proudly
hands over a cache of Enfield rifle bullets he
had kept dry for 40 years. Another elderly
man apologizes for his enfeebled inability to
enlist in another campaign but says, "I have
a pile of children and grandchildren ... I
give them to you so they can travel with
you." Cabezas' storytelling talents also run
to humor. Not the least of the problems
faced by revolutionary couples was that of
contraceptives too expensive for their
means. He relates with the delight of a mili-
tary strategist the methods by which one
couple would distract an unwary shop-
keeper while the other couple made off with
handfuls of condoms. "Students are ban-
dits, right?" comments Cabezas.
The book is a superb oral history of one
Nicaraguan's journey through Sandi-


48/CAI?BBEAN VVIeW








nismo. It provides numerous insights into
the underground lives of the now globally
visible leaders of Nicaragua. It also makes
clear that even if the Sandinistas are finding
Ernest Mandel and Marta Harnecker insuffi-
cient guides for running a country, the one
thing they did learn in the mountains was
how to endure. Anyone who underesti-
mates the extent of their endurance does so
at his own risk.
DAVID BRAY
Tulane University
New Orleans, Louisiana

Mere Description
Histoire de l'architecture dans la Caraibe,
David Buissert. Translated by Claude
Fivel-Demoret. 104 p. Editions
Caribeennes, Paris, 1984. English Edition
1980.

This brief survey of Caribbean architecture
covers a vast range of buildings on more
than a dozen separate islands. David
Buissert divides the architecture according
to five types: domestic, commercial, indus-
trial, military and naval, and churches and
public buildings. These divisions could lead
to fascinating comparisons, but Buissert
basically limits himself to mere description;
he rarely makes comparisons or fully devel-
ops a discussion of any one type.
The book is in fact most useful as an
outline for further research in the field. Or-
ganizing a study of architecture according
to building type allows for comparisons be-
tween different geographical areas, which
is important in the Caribbean where, as
Buissert points out, the islands have such
distinct characters made up of indigenous
forms as well as the outside influences of
Danish, Dutch, English, North American,
French and African styles. Buissert pro-
vides a bibliography and notes plus 186
black and white photographs, some of
which are from rare, early printed books not
easily available.
ELLEN L. BELKNAP
Columbia University
New York, New York
A Source of Human Experience
Le Roman Haitien: Ideologie et
Structure, Leon Frangois Hoffmann. 329
p. Editions Naaman, Quebec, Canada,
1982.

This complete and clinical account of the
Haitian contribution to the novel genre is
also an evaluation of Haitian national litera-
ture as distinct from an imitation or by-
product of French literature or literary
movements. The author, who visited Haiti
several times and talked with Haitians from
all walks of life, analyzes and classifies a
fascinating array of documents, without the
complacent attitude or paternalism which


often greets Third World production. Within
the scope of "ideology and structure," he
was attentive to whatever might have moti-
vated Haitians to write novels throughout
the years 1859 to 1980, even though that
genre is neither well defined, well classified,
nor well regulated by literary standards.
From Mimola by Antoine Innocent to
Dezafi by Frank6tienne, many Haitian nov-
elists seem to have been inspired by the
popular religion the ethnologists callvodou
and its adepts call Afrik-Ginen. For some it
has been a subject matter, for others a
method-a guide through the complex cul-
ture of the Haitian people. Jacques Rou-
main, who died in 1945 at the age of 39, left
in Gouverneurs de la Rosee (Masters of the
Dew) a legacy which includes the Manuel's
message of unity as well as the intellectual
integration of the people's language and
religion.
In the last chapter, "The Originality of the
Haitian Novel," Hoffmann notes that only
eight of the 156 novels written between
1900 to 1980 deal with subjects other than
Haitian social and political life. They reflect
a systematic quest for a national identity at
the same time that use of the French lan-
guage seemed to keep Haitian writers far
from the realities which are expressed in
creole. Hoffmann also points out that most
of the Haitian novelists have put creole
words, sentences and idioms in the mouths
of their characters. But what about the di-
alogue between the novelist and the charac-
ters? When Jacques Roumain showed that
it was possible, in a language invented by
his genius and his identification with the
people's interests, he opened the gates.
Franketienne cut the Gordian knot and
wrote Dezafi entirely in creole, as Roumain
would have done if he had lived to see the
development of Haitian literature during the
last 30 years.
The book's subtitle might well have read
"Achievements and Shortcomings" rather
than "Ideology and Structure." Nonethe-
less, Le Roman Haitien is an excellent refer-
ence for studying the behavior of the Haitian
intelligentsia throughout a century of liter-
ary production. It is an easy-to-read essay
and a source of human experience that can-
not be ignored by students of Haitian litera-
ture or by sociologists.
FELIX MORISSEAU-LEROY
Miami, Florida
Pithy Politics
La political de Mexico hacia
Centroambrica 1979-1982, Rene Herrera
and Mario Ojeda. 111 p. El Colegio de
Mexico, Mexico, 1983.

This pithy book analyzes the changes in
Mexico's foreign policy towards Central
America. Until 1979 the Mexican regime as-
signed a low priority to Central America.
The Nicaraguan revolution, coupled with


political violence in El Salvador and
Guatemala, led to the beginning of an active
Mexican foreign policy in the isthmus. Ac-
cording to the authors, the basis for this shift
is: "...the need to eliminate tension that
could flare into an international conflict on
Mexico's southern border, which would
sooner or later involve Mexico." At the least
such a conflict would change the low pri-
ority that national defense has received in
Mexico.
Herrera and Ojeda also explore the deli-
cate balance between Mexican-US relations
and Mexico's foreign policy in Central Amer-
ica. It has been difficult for Mexico to simul-
taneously please its northern neighbor and
its southern brethren.
The arguments presented in the book are
compelling, but it is regrettable that the au-
thors did not have greater access to official
sources of information in Mexico. The au-
thors complain in the text a number of times
of the reticence of the Mexican government
to share its documents. Ironically, much of
the authors' data comes from material pub-
lished in the US and Central America.
ROGER QUANT
INCAE
Managua, Nicaragua
So Near...
Distant Neighbors: A Portrait of the
Mexicans, Alan Riding. 385 p. Alfred A.
Knopf, New York, 1984. $18.95.

The search for the essential Mexico is
fraught with danger and temptation, per-
haps explaining the embarrassing weak-
ness of popular literature on our southern
neighbor. Alan Riding, a singularly posi-
tioned and talented correspondent for the
New York Times in Mexico City, shows both
the lure and the pitfalls of such a quest.
Distant Neighbors mirrors the frustration of
lifelong "Mexicanists" but gives less con-
stant attention to the richness and beauty
that draw us to the country. The book alter-
nates between poignant insights about
Mexico and long-discredited cliches about
"national character" and "the Aztec past"
that allegedly burden the country.
The mostserious complaintwiththe book
lieswiththe firstchapter, which is a medleyof
psychological language instead of solid so-
cial analysis, and spoils the heartier descrip-
tion found inside. Mr. Riding describes a
population disabled by a "deep sub-
conscious past," "racial characteristics and
personality traits of the Indians," and a "vir-
tually tribal" ethos of authoritarianism at all
levels of society. Evoking the intellectual self-
flagellation of the positivist tradition (via
Samuel Ramos and Octavio Paz), Mr. Riding
tries to generalize about Mexico by musing
about machismo, mother worship and
other flawed denizens of "the Mexican soul."
After this unfortunate beginning, the
book becomes much more interesting. Mr.


CAIBBEAN PEVIEw/49









Riding's analysis of the weak opposition
(chapter 5) should be required reading at
the US State Department and PRI hea'd-
quarters, where officials revel or fret over the
PAN and PSUM. The chapter on economic
models (chapter 7) is an excellent popular
synthesis with plenty for the specialist as
well. Likewise, the tales of PEMEX in the late
1970s are welcome additions to our piece-
meal understanding of the oil boom and
bust. And the horrors of Mexico City remind
us once again of the daunting challenges
ahead for government and people.
Mr. Riding surprisingly does not address
some of the key mysteries of recent Mexican
history. Why did Echeverria hide the oil
finds? What has been discovered in the in-
vestigation of journalist Manuel Buendia's
death? Where are the details of the takeover
of Excelsior in 1976? Any additional details
would have been welcome, especially given
the author's access and understanding of
the netherworld of Mexican politics.
Further, Mr. Riding makes a few factual
mistakes and interpretive missteps that
could have been avoided by more attention
to the wealth of academic literature on Mex-
ico: Jacinto and Machi L6pezwere not killed
together (and were not related, as far as I
know); Pancho Villa was from Chihuahua,
not Durango; Mexico is not a case of "popu-
list socialism"; few would claim that the
president has gained authority in the 1970s;
and the business sector is far from
monolithic.
Alan Riding has written a valuable book;
but he has also shown that lo mexicano
eludes us still. It may be that the seminal
popular work on Mexico will be written in
the future; alternatively, it may be that there
is no single set of generalizations adequate
to the delicate weave of Mexican life.
STEVEN E. SANDERSON
University of Florida
Gainesville, Florida

Dispassionate Conflict
Central America, Anatomy of Conflict,
Robert S. Leiken, ed. 351 p. Pergamon
Press, New York, 1984.

Robert Leiken has assembled a stimulating
collection of readings on the contemporary
Central American crises written by 17 aca-
demics, journalists and government offi-
cials. If nothing else, the volume is a useful
composite of critiques and defenses of US
policy in Central America. The authors in-
clude specialists on Latin American affairs,
US foreign policy and East-West nations.
Only a handful of them, however, have long-
term experience with Central American af-
fairs specifically.
One problem with works that focus on
contemporary conflicts is that they soon
become outdated. This is true of many of
the selections, although they will at the very


least serve as testimony to the situation in
Central America and its relation to the rest
of the world in the early 1980s. Some of the
essays obviously have more permanent
value. The introductory essays by Christo-
pher Dickey, Walter LaFeber and Richard
Millett all deal with long-term characteris-
tics and trends on the isthmus. Arturo
Cruz's excellent essay on the origins of
Sandinista foreign policy goes beyond its
immediate topic in revealing a great deal
about the nature of the Sandinista move-
ment and the mentality of its leaders. Much
the same is true of Leiken's critical analysis
of the Salvadoran left. And Morris Rothen-
berg's assessments of Soviet policy in the
Caribbean region is a most useful overview.
Most of the remaining selections, on the
other hand, while informative and helpful in
understanding the dynamics of the current
situation, deal more narrowly with the im-
mediate situation and are to varying de-
grees more myopic in their scope. They
include some highly interesting research,
however. Theodore Moran provides some
remarkable data on US government cost
planning for various alternative policies to-
ward El Salvador during the next five years,
while Joseph Cirincione and Leslie Hunter
discuss actual and potential military
threats. Richard Feinberg and Robert Pastor
consider possible economic programs for
the region, while Leonel Gomez looks at the
staggering emigration that the conflicts are
stimulating. There are provocative essays
on US policy formulation by Viron Vaky,
Howard Wiarda, Tom Farer, Barry Rubin
and 1. M. Destler.
Unlike many of the anthologies which
have appeared on the Central American
crises, Leiken has avoided extreme posi-
tions and tends to present moderate and
dispassionate analyses of the region. If any-
thing, they lean slightly toward the right on
balance, although Leiken has made a sin-
cere effort to include a spectrum of political
views. The book thus offers both the uniniti-
ated and the Latin American specialist a
provocative and informative collection of
articles from a variety of observation points.
From the vantage point of the historian, the
work is a bit shallow on the roots of conflict,
especially in terms of economic and social
development, but is nevertheless useful for
classroom use in courses which focus on
late 20th century Central America.
RALPH LEE WOODWARD, JR.
Tulane University
New Orleans, Louisiana

Controlling Latin America
Controlling Latin American Conflicts: Ten
Approaches, Michael A. Morris and Victor
Millan, eds. 272 p. Westview, Boulder,
1983. $22.50.

Controlling Latin American Conflicts: Ten
Approaches is an ambitious attempt to ex-


plain sources of conflict in Latin America
and to propose alternatives for its control. It
is a neat, concise edition, assembled with
style and presented in dispassionate and
nondogmatic language. It thus serves as a
useful tool in understanding the dynamics
of recent Latin American conflicts. An addi-
tional plus is that it includes contributions
from both North and South American
scholars, thus lending overall balance.
The book points out early that it is an
unassailable fact that Latin American con-
flicts have become more difficult to control.
This is due, in large measure, to failure to
discover common denominators in the "be-
wildering variety" of conflicts found in the
region. These are often as diverse as their
sources, which may be historical, political,
economic, sociological or ideological--or
any combination thereof. In each conflict
situation, the combination of factors at play
is unique, and generalizations constructed
from the study of other regional disputes
often lack applicability to the conflict in
question.
The authors identify over 30 different
conflict situations in Latin America. Addi-
tionally, they categorize conflicts between
Latin American countries and extraregional
powers into five types: system/ideological,
hegemonic/influence, territorial/border, re-
source, and migration/refugee. These cate-
gories are useful as building blocks for
further study. The authors do not fall prey to
the common error of oversimplification of
conflict motivation, nor do they seek single
causation for events. All of the categories
are recognized as having overlapping
boundaries, creating multicausal conflict
situations. Problem areas are approached
with this important construct in mind.
The scope of this work is enormous, and
the editors have set an overly ambitious
goal. The topic and issues encompassed
are tremendously complex. So too are the
ten approaches presented for dealing with
conflict. They run the gamut from tradi-
tional diplomatic to confidence building to
domestic conflict containment. With the ex-
ception of "national approaches" and "con-
trolling the sources of armaments in Latin
America," each approach generally is ad-
dressed by only one author, which detracts
from the editors' ability to present opposing
views on contentious topic areas.
Regardless of its shortcomings, however,
Controlling Latin American Conflicts is a
well-written and worthwhile addition to the
library of any serious student of Latin Amer-
ican affairs. The research is thorough and
the concepts presented are thought-
provoking.

JIRI VALENTA
Naval Postgraduate School
Monterey, California

FREDERICK F SHAHEEN
United States Navy


50/CAIBBEAN review









Unconventional Geopolitics
Geopolitics of the Caribbean: Ministates
in a Wider World, Thomas D. Anderson.
175 p. Praeger, New York, 1984. $25.95.

This book by Thomas Anderson, a geogra-
phy professor with special expertise in
agricultural affairs, concentrates primarily on
Jamaica, the Bahamas, Trinidad and To-
bago, and the small Eastern Caribbean is-
lands. Unfortunately the author too often fails
to maintain this focus, as in his final chapter
on "Foreign Policy Options in a Region of
Change," which discusses US, not CAR-
ICOM, foreign policy options. Although such
conceptual confusion tends to permeate An-
derson's work, it is most apparent in his
largely unsuccessful attempt to dearly delin-
eate the book's geopolitical parameters.
Normally geopolitics encompasses the
interaction between a country's physical at-
tributes and its international behavior. But
Anderson tends to abandon this perspec-
tive. Indeed he readily concedes that "what
follows is an unconventional approach to
geopolitics" and frequently is quite casual
about established disciplinary boundaries.
While there is nothing wrong with innova-
tion, the framework within which Anderson
operates is functionally meaningless since
practically anything which is relevant to a
country's foreign policy is seen as fall-
ing within its scope. Consequently what
emerges is not a structured, coherent geo-
political inquiry, but rather a disjointed pot-
pourri which examines-often somewhat
superficially-such topics as geographic
setting, historical background, and contem-
porary "geopolitical" issues (marine
boundaries, the petroleum trade, democ-
racy, nonstate actors, Cuba's role and recent
U.S. policies).
There are, of course, sections in which
Anderson is quite strong, as in his treatment
of marine boundaries where he analyzes the
jurisdictional disputes which have compli-
cated relations between Caribbean basin
states and thereby have helped to generate
a contentious climate, which is not very con-
ducive to the integration process. Likewise
his survey of the Caribbean's economic
dynamics and problems generally does an
excellent job of explaining the complexities
involved. Particularly intriguing is his con-
viction that traditional West Indian farming
methods (mixing different crops together in
the same plot) are frequently superior to
and more productive than the modern
high-tech approach to agriculture. Ander-
son also displays a solid grasp of the tour-
ism business, pinpointing many of the
industry's very real, but not always readily
apparent liabilities.
Despite some shortcomings, Anderson's
work will contribute to alleviating the perva-
sive ignorance of Caribbean affairs which
exists in North America. The general reader
will find the book particularly useful. Area


specialists, however, are likely to feel that its
geopolitical component is too diffuse.
H. MICHAEL ERISMAN
Mercyhurst College
Erie, Pennsylvania


Caribbean Crystal Ball
The Caribbean Basin to the Year 2000,
Norman A. Graham and Keith L. Edwards.
166 p. Westview Press, Boulder, 1984.

During the last couple of decades there
have been many studies published dealing
with the problems of economic develop-
ment in the Caribbean. What sets this book
apart from the rest is that it has developed
projections from 1982 to the year 2000 for
the demographic, economic and resource-
use characteristics for 17 Caribbean basin
countries. It has brought together a wealth
of data not easily obtainable from other
sources and has presented them in a com-
parative framework that makes them most
meaningful. More than 100 tables and fig-
ures provide information on a wide variety
of topics, including population growth pro-
jections, fertility rates, per capital gross na-
tional product, foreign trade, oil and mineral
resources, and United States military as-
sistance. The book's authors are both econ-
omists employed by The Futures Group,
and as a result the approach they use is
primarily based upon econometric models
developed by that institution. Although 17
countries are covered, it is relevant to note
that Mexico and the nonindependent Carib-
bean islands-politically and administra-
tively affiliated with the United States, United
Kingdom, the Netherlands and France-
are excluded.
Among the book's most significant pro-
jections is that the combined population of
the 17 countries will increase approximately
50 percent by the year 2000, from 51.8 mil-
lion to 77.5 million. Furthermore, most of
this growth will occur in the urban environ-
ments of the largest cities, creating the po-
tential for severe population pressure and
strains on both housing and labor force
capacities. In general, the results of the pro-
jections and analysis make it clear that
many of the Caribbean basin countries face
a long-term struggle against demographic
and economic pressures; Guatemala, El
Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Guyana
and Haiti appear to be most vulnerable, and
to a lesser extent Belize, Costa Rica and the
Dominican Republic. On the other hand,
the authors suggest that Trinidad and To-
bago and the Bahamas have the brightest
future.
Making projections 18 years into the fu-
ture is always risky business, and whatever
assumptions are made will always be ques-
tioned by some readers. Nevertheless, I be-
lieve that this book is a valuable contri-


bution to the body of literature dealing with
economic development in the Caribbean
because it focuses attention on some spe-
cific problems that will most likely be en-
countered in the future.
THOMAS D. BOSWELL
University of Miami
Miami, Florida


Intelligent History
Venezuela. A Century of Change, Judith
Ewell. 258 p. University of Stanford Press,
Stanford, 1984.

The writing of general national histories has
always been a risky business, and the great
majority of those published leave much to
be desired. The risks of such an enterprise
are multiplied if the history is contemporary
and covers the most controversial problems
of recent years, and even more so in the
case of Venezuela, which has suffered par-
ticularly radical social transformations dur-
ing the "century of change" which Judith
Ewell analyzes in this book.
After an intelligent introduction which
draws attention to the peculiar characteris-
tics of Venezuelan society during the colo-
nial period, analyzes the impact of the Wars
of Independence and the Federal War of
1858-63, and registers the subsequent at-
tempt of Guzman Blanco to lay the basis for
a centralized state, the author begins her
study of 20th century Venezuela with a re-
view of the situation in the 1890s: geogra-
phy, resources, economy; politics, admin-
istration, foreign relations; and, finally,
literature, art, science and culture. These
initial threads are skillfully woven together
as the text progresses. Successive chapters
cover the "Triumph of the Tachirenses"
(1899-1922), "Oil and the Fever of Political
Freedom" (1923-45), "the Trienio and the
New National Ideal" (1945-58), "R6mulo
Betancourt and the New Venezuela"
(1958-63), "Political Democracy and State
Capitalism" (1964-73) and "the Petroliza-
tion of the National Problems" (1974-83).
As is inevitable in this type of book, the
author often slides over the potentially more
polemical points, but she is sufficiently well
informed and intelligent to record problems
for the more observant reader even where
she herself prefers not to assume a clearly
defined posture. She has managed, with
commendable success, to include in the
pattern of her discussion an important
thread devoted to cultural history, and this
must be considered one of her major
achievements. Despite all the difficulties of
writing a short introductory study of this
nature, the overall result of Judith Ewell's
effort must be considered a success.
RICHARD PARKER
Universidad Central de Vknezuela
Caracas, enezuela


CAIBBEAN EVIEW/51








Recent Books



On the Region and Its Peoples


Compiled by Marian Goslinga


Anthropology and Sociology

Adventurers and Proletarians: The Story of
Migrants in Latin America. Magnus Morner,
Harold Sims. University of Pittsburgh Press,
1985. 192 p. $16.95.

Anxious Pleasures: The Sexual Lives of an
Amazonian People. Thomas Gregor. University
of Chicago Press, 1985. 240 p. $19.95.

The Aztec Arrangement: The Social History of
Pre-Spanish Mexico. Rudolf van Zantwijk.
University of Oklahoma Press, 1985. 368 p.
$27.50.

Los aztecas: un pueblo de guerreros. Jordi
Gussinyer i Alfonso. Universitat de Barcelona
(Spain), 1984. 175 p.

Between Slavery and Free Labor: The
Spanish-Speaking Caribbean in the
Nineteenth Century. Manuel Moreno Fraginals,
Frank Moya Pons, Stanley L. Engerman. Johns
Hopkins University Press, 1985. $30.00.

Black Labor on a White Canal: Panama,
1904-1981. Michael L. Conniff. University of
Pittsburgh Press, 1985. 336 p. $24.95.

Campesino: The Diary of a Guatemalan
Indian. Ignacio Bizarro Ujpan; James D.
Sexton, ed. and trans. University of Arizona
Press, 1985. $22.50.

The Caribbean Slave: A Biological History.
Kenneth E Kiple. Cambridge University Press,
1985. 302 p. $29.95.

Chicano Cinema: Research, Reviews, and
Resources. Gary D. Keller. Bilingual
Review/Press, 1985. 202 p. $15.00.

Civiliser le people et former les elites. Aline
Heig. Editions I'Harmattan (Paris, France),
1984. 344 p. [Education in Colombia,
1918-1957].

Cultura espahola y America hispana. Luis
Marafion Richi. Espasa-Calpe (Madrid, Spain),
1984. 214 p.

Culture, Race and Class in the Common-
wealth Caribbean. M. G. Smith. Dept. of Extra-
Mural Studies, University of the West Indies
(Mona, Jamaica), 1984. 163 p. $6.00.

Doctors and Slaves: A Medical and
Demographic History of Slavery in the British
West Indies, 1680-1834. Richard B. Sheridan.
Cambridge University Press, 1985. 448 p.
$42.50.

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


Early Ceremonial Architecture in the Andes: A
Conference at Dumbarton Oaks, 26 and 27
October 1982. Christopher B. Donnan, ed.
Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and
Collection (Washington, D.C.), 1985. 300 p.
$27.50.















Education in Latin America. Colin Brock,
Hugh Lawlor, eds. Croom Helm (Dover, N.H.),
1985. 208 p. $29.00.

Escravismo e transicao: o Espirito Santo,
1850-1888. Vilma Paraiso Ferreira de
Almada. Graal (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), 1984.
221 p.

Etnomedicina en Guatemala. Elba Marina
Villatoro, ed. Centro de Estudios Folkl6ricos,
Universidad de San Carlos (Guatemala), 1984.
316 p.

Examen y evaluaci6n de la decada de la mujer
en el Ecuador, 1976-1985. Ludmila Rodriguez
de Troya. Comite Ecuatoriano de Cooperaci6n
con la Comisi6n Interamericana de Mujeres,
1984. 253 p.

Folk Literature of the Tehuelche Indians.
Johannes Wilbert, Karin Simoneau, eds. Latin
American Center, University of California (Los
Angeles), 1985. 288 p. $25.00.

Folklore from Contemporary Jamaicans. Daryl
Cumber Dance. University of Tennessee Press,
1985. 296 p. $23.95

Los gays bajo la revolucibn cubana. Allen
Young; Mximo Etlis, trans. Editorial Playor
(Madrid, Spain), 1984. 144 p.

Images and Identities: The Puerto Rican in
Two World Contexts. Asela Rodriguez de
Laguna, ed. Transaction Books, 1985. 275 p.
$24.95; $14.95 paper.

O livro no Brasil: sua historia. Laurence
Hallewell. Queiroz (Sao Paulo, Brazil), 1985.
693 p. [Corrected and enlarged translation of
Books in Brazil].


Memorias de un pueblito cubano. Esteban J.
Palacios Hoyos. Ediciones Universal (Miami,
Florida), 1985. 110 p. $6.59. [About Los
Arabos, 1925-1940]

Mexican and Central American Mythology.
Irene Nicholson. Rev. ed. R Bedrick Books (New
York, N.Y), 1985. 144 p. $17.95.

The New Immigrants. Carol O. Day, Edmund
Day. F Watts (New York, N.Y), 1985. 128 p.
$10.90.

Perspectives on Caribbean Regional Identity.
Elizabeth Thomas-Hope, ed. Centre for Latin
American Studies, University of Liverpool
(England), 1984. 134 p.

Political and Economic Migrants in America:
Cubans and Mexicans. Silvia Pedraza-Bailey.
University of Texas Press, 1985. 240 p. $27.00.

Rural Society in Colonial Morelos. Cheryl E.
Martin. University of New Mexico Press, 1985.
240 p. $27.50.

El tango y sus circunstancias, 1880-1920.
Fernando A. Asuncao. Editorial Ateneo
(Buenos Aires, Argentina), 1984. 307 p.

The Texas-Mexican Conjunto: History of a
Working-Class Music. Manuel H. Peha.
University of Texas Press, 1985. 248 p. $19.95;
$8.95 paper.

Voodoo Contra. Robert Gover. S. Weiser (York
Beach, Me.), 1985. 160 p. $6.95.

Who Do You Say?: Jesus Christ in Latin
American Theology. Claus Bussmann; Robert
R. Barr, trans. Orbis Books, 1985.

Women Brave in the Face of Danger:
Photographs of Latin and North American
Women. Margaret Randall. Crossing Press
(Trumansburg, N.Y.), 1985. 128 p. $18.95;
$10.95 paper.

Women in Latin America. Marjorie W.
Bingham, Susan H. Gross. Glenhurst
Publications (St. Louis Park, Minn.), 1985.
2 vols. $21.90; $13.90 paper.


Biography

Bob Marley: Reggae King of the World. Malika
Lee Whitney, Dermott Hussey. Kingston
Publishers (Jamaica), 1984. 197 p.

La dinastia. Antonio Llano Montes. Llano
Montes (Caracas, Venezuela), 1984. 380 p.
[About Fidel Castro]


52/CAIBBEAN REVIEW









Felix Eboue. Elie Castor, Raymond Tarcy.
Editions I'Harmattan (Paris, France), 1985. 360
p. 120E [About the Guyanese politician]

Forjadores de la conciencia national cubana.
Luis J. Botifoll, et al. Ediciones Universal
(Miami, Fla.), 1984. 107 p. $5.00.

Francisco de Paula Santander: iconografia.
Jaime Ardila, Camilo Lleras. Banco Santander
(Bogota, Colombia), 1984.

Jamaica Airman: A Black Airman in Britain,
1943 and After. E. Martin Noble. New Beacon
(London, England), 1984. 104 p.

Juarez marxista, 1848-1872. Salvador
Abascal. Editorial Tradici6n (Mexico), 1984.
509 p.

El magnetismo de Jose Marti. Fidel Aguirre.
Ediciones Universal (Miami, Fla.), 1985. 207 p.
$9.95.

Premio Juan J. Remos: mini-biografias ae los
que recibieron ese galard6n de 1971 a 1983.
Cruzada Educativa Cubana. La Cruzada
(Miami, Fla.), 1984. $14.95.

Vida de San Martin en Buenos Aires. Hector
Juan Piccinali. Institute Salesiano de Artes
Graficas (Buenos Aires, Argentina), 1984.
467 p.

Vidas venezolanas. R.J. Lovera de Sola, ed.
Alfadil (Caracas, Venezuela), 1984. 138 p. 22bs.

Description and Travel

Abenteuer Belize: Berichte iuber ein
unbekanntes Land Mittelamerikas. Manfred
Rauschert. Keil Verlag (Bonn, Germany), 1984.
320 p.

Burros and Paintbrushes: A Mexican
Adventure. Everett G. Jackson. Texas A & M
University Press, 1985. 160 p. $13.95.

Las fronteras azules de Colombia. Hernbn
Diaz. Banco Central Hipotecario (Bogota,
Colombia), 1985. 220 p.

Guia turistica de Caracas, el litoral y
Venezuela, 1984. Corporaci6n de Turismo. La
Corporaci6n (Caracas, Venezuela), 1984. 390 p.
[Spanish and English]

Jamaica. Hildebrand Staff, ed. Hippocrene
Books, 1985. 127 p. $8.95.

Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and the French
Antilles. Philippe Gloaguen, Pierre Josse, eds.;
Mark Howson, trans. Collier Books, 1985.

Yochib: The River Cave. C. William Steele. Cave
Books (St. Louis, Mo.), 1985. 144 p. $15.00;
$10.00 paper. [About Mexico]


Economics

The Agriculture Sector and Environmental
Issues. Loyd Coke, R 1. Gomes, A. M. Gajraj.
Institute of Social and Economic Research,
University of the West Indies (Mona, Jamaica),
1984. 181 p. [Includes references to Trinidad]


Alternatives to Unemployment and
Underemployment: The Case of Colombia.
Michael Hopkins. Westview Press, 1985. 120 p.
$17.95.
The Argentine Labor Movement, 1930-1945:
A Study in the Origins of Peronism. David
Tamarin. University of New Mexico Press, 1985.
304 p. $27.50.

Cuba: The Continuing Revolution. Gil Green.
2d ed. International Publications (New York,
N.Y.), 1985. 288 p. $3.95. [Updated ed. of Cuba
at 25]
Cuba hoy. Angel G. Penelas. Gonzalez & Sirera
(San Jose, Costa Rica), 1984. 157 p.















\1 -- _

.D6nde va el Chapare? Gonzalo Flores, Jose
Blanes. Centro de Estudios de la Realidad
Econ6mica y Social (La Paz, Bolivia), 1984.
274 p. [Study of cocaine production in Bolivia]

L'emploi en Guadeloupe en 1980. Merv6
Domenach, Jean Pierre Guengant. Institute
national de la statistique et des &tudes
6conomiques, INSEE (Pointe-h-Pitre,
Guadeloupe), 1984. 323 p. 60F.

Employed Women in Barbados: A
Demographic Profile. Joycelin Massiah.
Institute of Social and Economic Research,
University of the West Indies (Cave Hill,
Barbados), 1984. 131 p.

En defense de Mexico: pensamiento
econ6mico politico. Jesus Silva Herzog. Centro
de Estudios Econ6micos y Sociales del Tercer
Mundo, CEESTEM, 1984. 2 vols.

The Fitful Republic: Economy, Society, and
Politics in Argentina. Juan E. Corradi.
Westview Press, 1985. 200 p. $20.00; $10.95
paper.

Haciendas, campesinos, y political agrarias
en Colombia, 1920-1980. Dario Fajardo M.
Editorial La Oveja Negra (Bogota, Colombia),
1984. 172 p.

Influence des changes intra-latinoambricains
sur I'Economie colombienne: un module
multisectoriel. Jorge Requena Blanco. R Lang
(Bern, Switzerland), 1984. 238 p. [Thesis,
University of Geneva]

Instrumental para el studio de la economic
argentina. Ricardo Jorge Ferruci. Editorial
Universidad de Buenos Aires (Argentina), 1984.
351 p.


Latin America and the World Recession.
Esperanza Duran, ed. Cambridge University
Press, 1985. 224 p. $44.50.

Mexico and the United States: Studies in
Economic Interaction. Peggy B. Musgrave, ed.
Westview Press,1985. 240 p. $23.50.

Migration and Development in the Caribbean:
The Unexplored Connection. Robert A. Pastor,
ed. Westview Press, 1985. 365 p. $22.95.

Noncapitalist Development: The Struggle to
Nationalize the Guyanese Sugar Industry.
Paulette Pierce. Rowman & Allenheld (Totowa,
N.J.), 1984. 220 p. $25.00.

El Paraguay rural entire 1869 y 1913:
contribuci6n a la historic econ6mica regional
del Plata. Juan Carlos Herken Krauer. Centro
Paraguayo de Estudios Sociol6gicos, 1984.
224 p.

El pensamiento econ6mico latinoamericano.
Isidro Parra Pefia. Plaza & Janes (Bogota,
Colombia), 1984. 120 p.

Poblacibn y empleo en el Peru. Aldo Panfichi.
Centro de Estudios y Promoci6n del Desarrollo,
DESCO (Lima, Peru), 1984.

Political da borracha no Brasil: a falincia da
borracha vegetal. Nelson Prado Alves Pinto.
Editbra HUCITEC (Sao Paulo, Brazil), 1984.
168 p.

The Potosi Mita, 1573-1700: Compulsory
Indian Labor in the Andes. Jeffrey A. Cole.
Stanford University Press, 1985. 192 p. $29.50.

Production and Water Use of Several Food and
Fodder Crops under Irrigation in the Desert
Area of Southwestern Peru. Th. Alberda.
Centre for Agricultural Publishing and
Documentation (Wageningen, Netherlands),
1985.

Les puissances d'argent en Martinique. Guy
Cabort Masson. Laboratoire de Recherches de
I'AMEP (Fort-de-France, Martinique), 1985.
300 p.

Secondary Agrobased Industries: ECCM and
Barbados. Jeffrey W. Dellimore, Judy A.
Whitehead. Institute of Social and Economic
Research, University of the West Indies (Mona,
Jamiaca), 1984. 296 p.

The Silver Men: West Indian Labour Migration
to Panama, 1850-1914. Velma Newton.
Institute of Social and Economic Research,
University of the West Indies (Mona, Jamaica),
1984. 218 p.

Tendencias estructurales y coyuntura de la
economic dominicana, 1968-1983. Miguel
Ceara Hatton. Depto. de Investigaciones
Econ6micas y Sociales, Fundaci6n Friedrich
Ebert (Santo Domingo), 1984. 265 p.

Trade, Debt, and Growth in Latin America.
Antonio Jorge, Jorge Salazar Carrillo, Enrique
R Shnchez. Pergamon Press, 1984. 165 p.
$30.00.


CAIBBEAN FPVIEW/53










Trade, Government, and Society in Caribbean
History, 1700-1920: Essays Presented to
Douglas Hall. B. W Higman, ed. Heinemann
Educational (Kingston, Jamaica), 1984. 172 p.

Unions and Politics in Mexico: The Case of the
Automobile Industry. lan Roxborough.
Cambridge University Press, 1985. 224 p.
$39.50.

The Virgin Islands of the U.S.: Education vs.
Economy. Robert V Vaughn. Aye-Aye Press (St.
Croix, VI.), 1984.

Women, Work, and Development. Margaret
Gill, Joycelin Massiah. Institute of Social and
Economic Research, University of the West
Indies (Cave Hill, Barbados), 1984. 129 p.



History and Archaeology

The Archaeology of West and Northwest
Mesoamerica. Michael S. Foster, Phil C.
Weigand, eds. Westview Press, 1985. 325 p.
$30.00.

L'Atlantique et ses rivages, 1500-1800.
Association des historians modernistes, Institut
de Recherches sur les Civilisations de
l'Occident Moderne, Centre d'Histoire des
Espaces Atlantiques (Bordeaux) L'Association
(Paris, France), 1984. 109 p. 50E

CentroamBrica e Italia: phginas de historic y
literature. Franco Cerutti. Asociaci6n Cultural
Dante Alighieri (San Jose, Costa Rica), 1984.
231 p.

Crisis and Decline: The Viceroyalty of Peru in
the Seventeenth Century. Kenneth J. Adrien.
University of New Mexico Press, 1985. 288 p.
$27.50.

Un edifice qui parole; souvenirs et reflexions
d'un ancien president. Frank Sylvain. H.
Deschamps (Port-au-Prince, Haiti), 1984.
317 p.

Empire of the Inca. Burr Cartwright Brundage.
University of Oklahoma Press, 1985. 414 p.
$10.95. [Reprint of 1963 ed.]

Enemies of Empire. John G. LaGuerre. Extra-
Mural Dept., University of the West Indies
(Trinidad), 1984. 258 p. [About the unmakingg"
of the French colonial empire]

Episodios de las guerras por la independencia
de Cuba. Rafael Lubian y Arias. Ediciones
Universal (Miami, Fla.), 1985. 77 p. $6.95.

Grenada: An Eyewitness Account of the U.S.
Invasion and the Caribbean History That
Provoked It. Hugh O'Shaughnessy. Dodd,
Mead, 1985. 258 p. $14.95. [Originally
published as Grenada: Revolution, Invasion
and Aftermath]

Historia de la primera Audiencia de Buenos
Aires, 1661-1672. Teresa Beatriz Cauzzi.
Facultad de Derecho y Ciencias Sociales del
Rosario (Rosario, Argentina), 1984. 297 p.


La independencia en America. Flavio de
Castro. Ediciones Avance (Bogota, Colombia),
1984.

The Lowland Maya Postclassic. Arlen F. Chase,
Prudence M. Rice, eds. University of Texas
Press, 1985. 328 p. $27.50.

Mexico: A History. Robert Ryal Miller. University
of Oklahoma Press, 1985. 384 p. $19.95.

Nicaragua: A New Kind of Revolution. Philip
Zwerling. L. Hill (Westport, Conn.), 1985.
$16.95; $8.95 paper.

















Nicaragua: de Walker a Somoza. Gregorio
Selser. Mex-Sur Editorial (Mexico), 1984. 332 p.

On Kongens Gade: A Caribbean Profile.
Wayne L. Sprauve. Todd & Honeywell (Great
Neck, N.Y.), 1985. 64 p. $7.95. [About the
Virgin Islands]

Panamb: ochenta ahos de ausencia. Hugo
E. Velasco Arizabaleta. Imp. Feriva (Call,
Colombia), 1984. 207 p.

Religion and Empire: The Dynamics of Aztec
and Inca Expansionism. Geoffrey W. Conrad,
Arthur A. Demarest. Cambridge University
Press, 1984. 266 p. $49.50; $17.95 paper.

Spanish Sea: The Gulf of Mexico in North
American Discovery, 1500-1685. Robert S.
Weddle. Texas A & M University Press, 1985.
456 p. $34.50.

Tanaya. Michel Metery. Editions des Horizons
Caraibes (Fort-de-France, Martinique), 1984.
148 p. 130F. [About the 1902 eruption of Mont
Pel6]

Trade, Plunder and Settlement: Maritime
Enterprise and the Genesis of the British
Empire, 1480-1630. Kenneth R. Andrews.
Cambridge University Press, 1985. 404 p.
$49.50; $16.95 paper.


Language and Literature

El circulo de la muerte. Waldo de Castroverde.
Ediciones Universal (Miami, Fla.), 1984. 153 p.
$8.95. [Novel about a plot by castristas and
sandinistas to assassinate the US president]


Cita in Nicaragua. Robert Moss, Anaud de
Borchgrave; Maria Emilia Negri Beltrhn, trans.
Emec6 Editores (Buenos Aires, Argentina),
1984. 349 p.

Concepto de "americanismo" en la historic
del espaiol: punto de vista lexicol6gico y
lexicografico. Jesus Gutemberg Boh6rquez C.
Institute Caro y Cuervo (Bogota, Colombia),
1984.

Critical Issues in West Indian Literature:
Selected Papers from West Indian Literature
Conferences, 1981-1983. Erika Sollish
Smilowitz, Roberta Quarles Knowles.
Caribbean Books (Parkersburg, Iowa), 1984.
146 p. $15.00.

Cuatro narradores colombianos: Ram6n Illan
Bacca, Roberto Burgos Cantor, Carlos
Gustavo Alvarez, Julio Olaciregui. Fundaci6n
Sim6n y Lola Guberek (Bogota, Colombia),
1984. 137 p.

Evolucibn del personaje femenino en la novela
mexicana. Samuel G. Saldivar. University Press
of America, 1985. 210 p. $21.75; $11.75 paper.

Un golondrino no compone primavera. Eloy
Gonzalez Arguelles. Ediciones Universal (Miami,
Fla.), 1984. $9.95. [Novel about "marielitos']

Historia de Mayta. Mario Vargas Uosa.
Editorial Sudamericana (Buenos Aires,
Argentina), 1984. 346 p.

Julio CortBzar, poeta camaleon. Wiltrud Imo.
Publicaciones del Colegio de Espaila
(Salamanca, Spain), 1984.

Manual breve de lengua creol: diccionario
creol-espahol, espahol-creol. Nelson Didiez.
Editora Taller (Santo Domingo), 1984. 415 p.

La poesia political y social en Colombia:
antologia. Gonzalo Espafia, ed. El Ancora
Editores (Bogota, Colombia), 1984. 232 p.

South American Indian Languages:
Retrospect and Prospect. Harriet E. Manelis
Klein, Louisa R. Stark. University of Texas Press,
1984. 792 p. $32.50.

Teatro paraguayo inedito. Josefina PlB, Mario
Halley Mora. Mediterraneo (Asunci6n,
Paraguay), 1984. 321 p.

Vocabulario de la lengua aymara. Ludovico
Bertonio. Centro de Estudios de la Realidad
Econ6mica y Social (La Paz, Bolivia), 1984.
985 p. [Reprint of the 1612 ed.]

Words Unchained: Language and Revolution in
Grenada. Chris Searle. Zed Press (London,
Eng.), 1984. 288 p. 18.95; 5.95 paper.



Politics and Government

Asi fui el fraude: las elecciones presidenciales
de Panama, 1984. Rail Arias de Para. Impr.
Edilito (Panama), 1984. 259 p.


54/CAlRBBEAN FEVIeW









Camino de la democracia en America Latina.
Pablo Iglesias. Editorial Ayuso (Madrid, Spain),
1984. 298 p.

The Central American Crisis: Sources of
Conflict and the Failure of U.S. Policy.
Kenneth M. Coleman, George C. Herring, eds.
Scholarly Resources (Wilmington, Del.), 1985.
224 p. $30.00; $9.95 paper.

Centroamerica: entire dos fuegos. Leonel
Giraldo. Editorial Norma (Bogota, Colombia),
1984. 306 p.

Contadora and the Central American Peace
Process. Roberto Alvarez, Bruce Bagley.
Westview Press, 1985. 240 p. $25.00.

Costa Rica: The Unarmed Democracy.
Leonard Bird. Sheppard Press (London, Eng.),
1984. 224 p.

La crisis centroamericana. Daniel Camacho,
Manuel Rojas B., eds. Editorial Universitaria
Centroamericana, EDUCA (San Jose, Costa
Rica), 1984. 444 p. [Proceedings of the 5th
Congress Centroamericano de Sociologia,
1982].

Cr6nica de la decada military. Jose Rodriguez
Iturbide. Ediciones Nueva Politica (Caracas,
Venezuela), 1984. 576 p. [About Venezuela]

Cuba's International Relations: The Anatomy
of a Nationalistic Foreign Policy. H. Michael
Erisman. Westview Press, 1985.244 p. $34.00;
$13.95 paper.

Los errors de Diaz Ordaz: el conflict
medico, la tragedia de Tlatelolco. Nieves
Hernandez Garcia. Costa-Amic Editores
(Mexico). 1984. 126 p.

Estado y sociedad en America Latina. Marcos
Kaplan. Editorial Oasis (Mexico), 1984. 306 p.

Generals in Retreat: The Crisis of Military Rule
in Latin America. Philip O'Brien, Paul
Cammack, eds. Manchester University Press
(Dover, N.H.), 1985. $32.50.

Grenada and Soviet/Cuban Policy: Internal
Crisis and U.S. Intervention. Herbert J. Ellison,
Jiri Valenta, eds. Westview Press, 1985. 400 p.
$30.00; $7.50 paper.

Guatemala: sus recursos naturales, el
militarismo y el imperialismo. Jacobo Vargas
Foronda. Claves Latinoamericanas (Mexico),
1984. 173 p.

Guerrilla Warfare. Che Guevara. Brian
Loveman, Thomas M. Davies, Jr., eds.
University of Nebraska Press, 1985. 440 p.
$22.50; $10.95 paper.

eHacia d6nde vamos?: radiografia del
present cubano. Tulio Diaz Rivera. Ediciones
Universal (Miami, Fla.), 1985. 144 p.

La isla al rev6s: Haiti y el destiny dominicano.
Joaquin Balaguer. Libreria Dominicana (Santo
Domingo), 1984. 257 p.

Jamaica, Managing Political and Economic
Change. John D. Forbes. American Enterprise
Institute for Public Policy Research, 1985.


Latin American Politics and Development.
Howard J. Wiarda, Harvey F Kline, eds. 2d rev.
ed. Westview Press, 1985. 655 p. $48.50;
$20.00 paper.

Militarization and the International Arms Race
in Latin America. Augusto Varas. Westview
Press, 1985. 165 p. $28.00.

Military Government and Popular Participation
in Panama: The Torrijos Regime, 1968-1975.
George Priestley. Westview Press, 1985. 200 p.
$20.00.
Nicaragua: The Sandinista People's
Revolution. Bruce Marcus, ed. Pathfinder Press,
1985. 400 p. $30.00; $7.95 paper.


Nicaragua, valientemente libre. losu Perea.
Editorial Revoluci6n (Madrid, Spain), 1984.
174 p.

Para romper el silencio: resistencia y lucha en
las carceles salvadorefias. Claribel Alegria, D.
J. Flakoll. Ediciones Era (Mexico), 1984. 245 p.

O poder military. H6lio Silva. L & PM (Porto
Alegre, Brazil), 1984. 565 p.

El proyecto politico-militar. Augusto Varas,
Felipe Agiero. Facultad Latinoamericana de
Ciencias Sociales, FLACSO (Santiago, Chile),
1984. 279 p.

The Red Orchestra: Instruments of Soviet
Policy in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Dennis Bark, ed. Hoover Institution Press,
1985.

Report on Guatemala: Findings of the Study
Group on United States-Guatemalan
Relations. Central American Program, School
of Advanced International Studies, The Johns
Hopkins University. Westview Press, 1985. 80 p.
$10.00.

Reporters Under Fire: U.S. Media Coverage of
Conflicts in Lebanon and Central America.
Landrum Rymer Boiling, ed. Westview Press,
1985. 155 p. $17.00.

La Revoluci6n Mexicana y la lucha actual por
la democracia. Arnaldo C6rdova, Gerardo
Unzueta, Edmundo Jard6n Arzate. Ediciones
de Cultura Popular (Mexico), 1984.

Revolution and Intervention in Grenada: The
New Jewel Movement, the United States and
the Caribbean. Kai P Schoenhals, Richard A.
Melanson. Westview Press, 1985. 200 p.
$20.00.


Revolution or Order?: The Politics of Change
and Institutional Development in the
Caribbean Basin. Marvin Will. Westview Press,
1985. 250 p. $28.50.

Small Countries, Large Issues: Studies in
U.S.-Latin American Asymmetries. Mark
Falcoff. American Enterprise Institute for Public
Policy Research, 1984. 126 p. $14.95; $5.95
paper.

El socialimperialismo ruso en la Argentina.
Carlos Echagiue. Ediciones Agora (Buenos
Aires, Argentina), 1984. 367 p.



Reference

A la luz de los libros: bibliografia
guatemalteca comentada, 1980-1981. Hugo
Cerezo Dard6n. Editorial Universitaria
(Guatemala), 1984. 221 p.

A-Z of Jamaican Heritage. Olive Senior.
Heinemann Educational (Kingston, Jamaica),
1985. 176 p. $10.00.

Bibliografia argentina sobre tematica judia.
Alberto Kleiner. Institute Hebreo de Ciencias
(Buenos Aires, Argentina), 1984-85. 2 vols.

Bibliografia del teatro ecuatoriano,
1900-1982. Gerardo Luzuriaga. Casa de la
Cultura Ecuatoriana (Quito, Ecuador), 1984.
131 p.

Diccionarrio de la literature hispanoamericana:
autores. Horacio Jorge Becco. Huemul
(Buenos Aires, Argentina), 1984. 313 p.

Diccionario del petr6leo venezolano. Anibal R.
Martinez. Editorial Ateneo de Caracas
(Venezuela), 1984. 157 p.

Dicionario hist6rico-biografico brasileiro,
1930-1983. Israel Beloch, Alzira A. de Abreu,
eds. Fundacao Getulio Vargas (Rio de Janeiro,
Brazil), 1985. 4 vols.

Encyclopedie van de Nederlandse Antillen. J.
Ph. de Palm, ed. 2d rev. ed. De Walburg Pers
(Zutphen, Netherlands), 1985. 552 p.
Nfll25.00.

Historiografia military argentina. Roberto
Etchepareborda. Circulo Militar (Buenos Aires,
Argentina), 1984. 205 p.

Infant Mortality and Health in Latin America:
An Annotated Bibliography from the 1979-82
Literature. Mark Farren. International
Development Research Centre (Ottawa,
Canada), 1985. 172 p. $13.00.

Introduction to Library Research in Hispanic
Literature. Szilvia E. Szmuk, Angela B.
Dellepiane. Westview Press, 1985. 150 p.
$20.00.

Refugees in the United States: A Reference
Handbook. David W. Haines, ed. Greenwood
Press, 1985. 243 p. $39.95.


CARBBEAN rEVIEW/55









Florida International University


Southeast Florida's Four-Year State University


Florida International University (FIU)-located in one of the
nation's fastest growing metropolitan areas and centers for
international trade, finance and cultural exchange-empha-
sizes broad interdisciplinary education for strengthening
understanding of world issues and preparing students for
membership in our modern interrelated world. It offers
courses and programs at three locations: Tamiami Campus in
Southwest Dade County, Bay Vista Campus in North Miami
and the Broward Center, on the Central Campus of Broward
Community College.
Florida International University's faculty members are
renowned for their commitment to teaching, research and
service from an international perspective. Individual and
group research projects run the gamut of possible topics and
geographic regions. Faculty exchanges take FIU researchers
abroad and bring leading international scholars to the campus.
15,000 students come from 74 nations and 41 states. They
may select from undergraduate and graduate studies in the
humanities, social sciences, mathematical and physical sci-
ences, and a wide range of professional programs, earning
degrees and/or certificates. Of special international interest
are the Graduate Program In International Studies, a multi-
disciplinary curriculum leading to the Master of Arts degree
[contact: Director, Graduate Program in International Studies,
(305) 554-2248] and a program in International Economic
Development, offered as part of the Master of Arts in
Economics [contact: Chairperson, Department of Economics,
(305) 554-2316]. A Master of International Business provides
basic management tools and familiarity with the international
environment [contact: Director, Master of International Busi-
ness, (305) 940-5870].
Several professional programs provide academic and ap-
plied courses in fields applicable to an international focus. The
School of Nursing's program leads to the Bachelor of Science
and prepares its graduates to practice professional nursing in
a multicultural and changing society [contact: School of
Nursing, (305) 940-5915]. The School of Public Affairs and
Services offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in Crimi-
nal Justice, Health Services Administration, Public
Administration and Social Work emphasizing needs, issues
and alternatives in rapidly changing urban societies [contact:
School of Public Affairs and Services, (305) 940-5840].
The Latin American and Caribbean Center, one of 12 US
Department of Education National Resource Centers, coordi-
nates teaching and research on the region, administers an
academic certificate program, supports research and sponsors
public activities on Latin America and the Caribbean [contact:
Director, Latin American and Caribbean Center, (305)
554-2894].
A certificate in International Bank Management provides
training in international banking policy, practice and tech-


niques [contact: Business Counseling Office, (305) 554-2781].
The International Banking Center cooperates with banks and
businesses in Miami to support research and sponsor seminars
on international banking topics [contact: International Banking
Center (305) 554-2771].
The International affairs Center promotes international
education, training, research and cooperative exchange by
encouraging a wide variety of faculty and student activities
and helping to develop the university's international programs
[contact: International Affairs Center, (305) 554-2846].
The English Language Institute conducts a writing labora-
tory for individualized instruction, provides diagnostic testing
of oral and written English language proficiency, and operates
the intensive English program, a four-month course of instruc-
tion in reading, conversation, grammar, composition, TOEFL
preparation and business English [contact: Director, English
Language Institute, (305) 554-2222].
The university is also the base for several international
organizations. The Inter-American University Council for
Economic and Social Development (CUIDES) is an indepen-
dent, nonprofit association of representatives from post-
secondary academic institutions. Its primary concern is assist-
ing nations of the Americas with economic and social
development. The Institute of Economic and Social Research
of the Caribbean Basin (IESCARIBE) is a group of Caribbean
basin economists and research institutes which develop
cooperative projects of mutual interest. The institute conducts
seminars and publishes resulting materials.


Florida International University
Tamiami Campus
Miami, Florida 33199








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