Front Cover
 Table of Contents
 Front Matter
 Editorial comments and notes

Digitization of this item is currently in progress.
Caribbean Quarterly
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00099208/00137
 Material Information
Title: Caribbean Quarterly
Physical Description: Serial
Language: English
Creator: University of the West Indies
Publisher: Extra Mural Dept. of the University College of the West Indies
Place of Publication: Mona, Jamaica
Genre: serial   ( sobekcm )
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 843029
sobekcm - UF00099208_00137
System ID: UF00099208:00137

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Table of Contents
        Table of Contents
    Front Matter
        Front Matter 1
        Front Matter 2
        Front Matter 3
    Editorial comments and notes
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
Full Text

,r fJ -. 4

i,, m. .n
rC^B ^g PMIC

*Ais1, =A


_ 1_1^ I~

e -, L .

wrsn rnHT

6 "

The Canada Hall of Residence of the University of the West Indies
at St. Augustine was formally opened in January 1964. It has
accommodation for 192 students. The cost of the Hall was given to the
University by the Government of Canada.

(Photographer Amador Packer).

VOLUME 12. No: 3




Editorial Comments and Notes 1

'A Study of the Writing of James Baldwin'
Gregorio Arana 3

Steve DeCastro 24

A Case Study of Politics and the Civil Service
C. H. Grant 37

Barry Floyd 50

Margaret Niehon, Biology and Hygiene for Caribbean Schools
Hopeton Gordon 54

Sheila Duncker, A Visual History of the West Indies
Helen S. Abrikian 55




MSS. and Communications should be addressed to the Editor. Unsolicited MSS.
which are not accepted for publication will be returned if accompanied by a stamped
addressed envelope.

Copyright reserved, and reproduction without permission strictly forbidden



Editor: H. C. MILLER, Director of Extra-Mural Studies, University
of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica.

The Editor is advised by an Editorial Board, consisting of
members of the University Staff.

Single copies can be obtained in the West Indies, from
booksellers or from the Extra-Mural Department in any territory.


Subscribers in the West Indies and the
United Kingdom (4 issues post free) $2.00 W.I. or 8/4d.
Subscribers in other countries $2.00 (U.S.) or equivalent

Fill in the form below and send with subscription to:

Caribbean Quarterly,
Department of Extra-Mural Studies,
University of the West Indies,
Mona, Kingston 7, Jamaica,

or to the local office of the Resident Tutor in any territory.


"Caribbean Quarterly" Subscription Form



I enclose..................................in payment of.......................subscription(s+

valid from Vol.........................No.......... ....for 4 issues.


D a te : ...................... ................. ........ ......... .. ...... ........ ... ..................


Vol. IV, Nos. 3 and 4

Carnival in Nineteenth Century Trinidad
The Traditional Masques of Carnival ......
The Changing Attitude of the Coloured Middle Class
Towards Carnival
Carnival in New Orleans
Calypso Legends of the Nineteenth Century (arranged
and edited by Andrew Pearse)
The Midnight Robbers
The Dragon Band or Devil Band
Pierrot Grenada
Price: $1.00 (B.W.I. or U.S.) or 4/2 U.K., per

Vol. VI, Nos. 2 and 3

Canada's Federal Experience ......
Australia-Background to Federation
The Constitution of Australia
Early Constitutional History of Jamaica
The Road Back-Jamaica After 1866
The Temporary Federal Mace ...... ...
Constitutional History of Trinidad and Tobago
Constitutional History of the Windwards
Constitutional History of the Leewards
Federalism in the West Indies
Summary of Constitutional Advances
Trinidad and Tobago
Leeward and Windward Islands
Price: $1.50 (B.W.I. or U.S.)
or 6/3 U.K., per issue.

Vol. VII, No. 3

West Indian Culture
West Indian Poetry ...........
The French West Indian Background to "Negritude"
Du Tartre and Labat on 17th Century
Slave Life in the French Antilles
The Place of Radio in the West Indies
The Turks and Caicos Islands-Some
Impressions of an English Visitor
Price. 60 cents (B.W.I or U.S.)
or 2/6 U.K., per issue.

Vol. VII, No. 4

Education and Economic Development
The University College of the West Indies
Drugs from the West Indies
Political Education in the Developing Caribbean


Frederick G. Cassidy, Jamaica Talk
Jahnheinz Jahn, Muntu, An Outline of
Neo-African Culture
V. S. Naipaul, A Home for Mr. Biswas

Price: 60 cents (B.W.I. or U.S.)
or 2/6 U.K., per issue.

Andrew Pearse
Daniel J. Crowley

Barbara Powrie
Munro S. Edmonson

Mitto Sampson
Daniel J. Crowley
Bruce Procope
Andrew Curr

Alexander Brady
F. W. Mahler
S. S. Ramphal
C. V. Gocking
R. N. Murray
Bruce Procope
H. O. B. Wooding
Coleridge Harris
Cecil A. Kelsick
S. S. Ramphal

Harvey de Costa
F. A. Phillips

M. G. Smith
R. J. Owens
G. R. Coulthard

Rev. C. Jesse
W. Richardson

Doreen Collins

W. Arthur Lewis
T. W. J. Taylor
Compton Seaforth
Rex Nettleford

Beryl Loftman Bailey

G. R. Coulthard
R. J. Owens

Editorial Comments and Notes

prize winning essay of the Sir Allen Lane award for the best essay
on some aspects of English Literature Mr. F. G. Rohlehr wrote on
V. S. Naipaul's A House for Mr. Biswas. In Volume 10, No. 3 we
reproduced Mr. C. G. O. King's essay on the poems of Derek Walcott
which won the award .for 1964. In this issue we publish the essay of
Mr. Gregorio Arana from British Honduras who submitted his entry
when a second-year student in the English Special Honours Class. He
selected to examine the writing of James Baldwin.

The impact of modern technology on the structure of economic
development in the West Indies has caused some serious revaluation
of its role in small open economies. Steve DeCastro of the Institute of
Social and Economic Research discusses implications of industrialisa-
tion based on a paper he presented to the Conference on Engineering
in Developing Economies sponsored jointly by the Faculty of Engineer-
ing of the University of the West Indies and the Trinidad and Tobago
Society of Professional Engineers in 1965.

Two years ago in Volume 10, No: 2, Bertram Collins commented
on the general strike in British Guiana with particular emphasis on
the role played by the Civil Service. On the 30th June this year the
Civil Service of British Honduras staged a strike. C. H. Grant of the
Institute of Social & Economic Research indicates that the strike was
inspired not by an industrial dispute, but by strained relationships
between the Government and the Public Officers' Union of British
Honduras-(formerly the British Honduras Civil Service Association).
For our commentary, we are grateful to Barry Floyd of the Geography
Department for his account on Climatology and Related Fields in the
Caribbean earlier this month.

Hopeton Gordon and Helen Abrikian review textbooks specially
published for the Caribbean-one on Biology and Hygiene and the
other on West Indian History.

The Baffling Creator


THE WORSHIP of the cult of James Baldwin has threatened to
go beyond reasonable bounds. This statement is in no way intended
to disparage the achievement of Baldwin, for his achievements have
been considerable. It is not intended to decry his fame, for his fame is
justly deserved. It is not, finally, intended to deny his qualities as a
writer, for he is a first class writer. What it seeks to do is to disapprove
of the tendency to make of Baldwin a phenomenon. It is as if the
white world, the world of book reviewers and the press, point at
Baldwin and exclaim with scarcely concealed wonder, "Look, he can
The flood of approbation that has greeted the publication of
Baldwin's books needs careful examination. When reviewers and critics
go so far out of their way to praise a man as a writer, when they try
to outdo each other in adulation, when they reach for the most
extravagant adjectives in the dictionary to describe his writings, this
is a reflection not so much of the worth of the writings as of the state
of their consciences. Of "Nobody Knows My Name" the Kansas City
Star wrote "If it can't arouse the American conscience, then there isn't
much hope for America-white or black." Much of the praise heaped
upon Baldwin is an attempt to demonstrate that the American con-
science has been roused.
But this demonstration is far from being a proof and it will take
some time before the full value of Baldwin's works can be assessed.
After all, Baldwin is still alive and only forty-one and as he states in
"Alas, Poor Richard"-"While he (the writer) is alive, his work is
fatally entangled with his personal fortunes and misfortunes, his per-
sonality, and the social facts and attitudes of his time." 1 He is speaking
here of Richard Wright but it applies very well to his own case. We
will therefore, leave aside for the time being the question of whether
he has had any effect on the social facts and attitudes of his time
and look more closely at the writings, for we cannot wait until "the
baffling creator no longer stands between us and his works."2
If Baldwin had not been born a negro, and into a poor family
he would most likely never have become a writer. He became a writer
in a desperate attempt to escape from, and to comment on, his en-
vironment. It is the forces of colour and of poverty which shaped him.
This fact cannot be divorced from any consideration of his success
as a writer. It is the source of his great determination. "Well, I had
said that I was going to be a writer, God, Satan and Mississippi not-

withstanding, and that colour did not matter, and that I was going to
be free." 3 It was his colour and his station in life which determined
his experience, that experience out of which a writer writes:

"One writes out of one thing only--one's own experience. Every-
thing depends on how relentlessly one forces from this experience the
last drop, sweet or bitter, it can possibly give. This is the only real
concern of the artist, to recreate out of the disorder ,of life that which
is art I have not written about being a negro at such length
because I expect that to be my only subject, but .only because it was
the gate I had to unlock before I could hope to write about anything
else." 4
It is for this reason that so much of Baldwin's writings is frankly
autobiographical. He had, as it were, to find himself by a minute and
detailed self-analysis and it is this self-analysis that is so mercilessly
exposed to the reader, particularly in his essays.
It is not often that one finds a writer who is prepared to give so
much of himself to the reader. Baldwin achieves this feat by taking
the reader into his confidence, by treating him as if he is a friend.
His supreme sel.f-confidence helps a great deal too. He does not hesi-
tate to point out his own good qualities and this is rather disarming,
as in the following statement: "I was then, (and I have not changed
much) a very tight, tense lean, abnormally ambitious, abnormally
intelligent, and hungry black cat."5 His personal claim to ambition
and intelligence is not overstated and it is no more boasting than the
statement that follows shortly after: "I am a black boy from the
Harlem streets." 6
What is Baldwin's view of his function as a writer? "The importance
of a writer is continuous;" he writes. "I think it's socially debatable
and usually socially not terribly rewarding, but that's not the point;
his importance, I think, is that he is here to describe things which
other people are too busy to describe. It is a function, let's face it; a
special function. There is no -democracy on this level. It's a very diffi-
cult thing to do and people who do it cannot by that token do many
other things. But their importance is, and the importance of writers
in this country now is this, that this country is yet to be discovered\
in any real sense."
There is no doubt by this time that James Baldwin is an important
American writer. We shall now see whether his importance is justifiable
in terms of his own criteria, that is, whether he has helped to discover
America in a more real sense. We may profitably begin with his essays.
"Notes Of A Native Son" consists of ten essays grouped into three
parts. Part One is literary and film criticism. Part Two is a description
of black America and Part Three is a discussion of the American negro's
experience in Europe. The essays are preceded by "Autobiographical
notes" which, together with the essay "Notes Of A Native Son", which
gives this book its name, should be the starting point for the person
who sets out to read Baldwin for the first time.

The whole book is characterized by that detachment which is
Baldwin's hall-mark as a writer. He has the ability to be objective
without being distant and to be concise without being obtuse. "Auto-
biographical Notes" contains within itself all the virtues just mentioned.
In about six short pages Baldwin tells us more about himself than
some writers could tell us about themselves in a hundred.
"I was born in Harlem" he begins, and this short sentence speaks
volumes. Behind it is the whole story of negro deprivation and of
Baldwin's particular achievement. We learn that a very important
event in Baldwin's life took place at age fourteen. It is stated very
laconically: "When I was fourteen I became a preacher, and when I
was seventeen I stopped" 7 Elsewhere, in "The Fire Next Time," he
has elaborated on this occurrence and it is, of course, the experience
which provides the framework and much of the matter for his first
novel. Again Baldwin states "when I was about twenty-one I had
enough done on a novel to get a Saiaton Fellowship. When I was twenty-
two the fellowship was over, the novel turned out to be unsaleable ".
The full story of this success and failure is told in the essay "Alas,
Poor Richard" in "Nobody Knows My Name."
Baldwin speaks at some length about the difficulties facing the
writer. The writer feels that the world into which he is born is a
conspiracy against the cultivation of his talent. But, Baldwin points
out, this difficulty has a great advantage, for it is the indifference of
the world which compels the artist to make his talent important. In
speaking of possible influences on himself as a writer, Baldwin suggests
the King James Bible, the rhetoric of the store-front church, the
qualities of Negro speech and Dickens love for bravura. He, of course,
like so many other writers-to-be, read everything he could lay his
hands on.
He stresses the importance to his writing of having been born a
Negro: "the most difficult (and most rewarding) thing in my life has
been the fact that I was born a Negro and was forced, therefore, to
effect some kind of truce with this reality."' Baldwin sees it as part
of the writer's business "to examine attitudes, to go beneath the
surface, to tap the source." 10 This is quite definitely what he set
out to do and what he has done. He recognizes for example that he is
"a kind of bastard of the West." 11 He learned to face the fact that he
hated and feared white people. At the same time he despised black
people, "probably because they failed to produce Rembrandt." 12

Towards the end of the "Notes", Baldwin asserts his love for
America and claims the right, for that very reason, to criticize her
perpetually. Most of his essays are directed towards this end-criticism
of America-and we feel that in the process he has become what he
wanted to be-an honest man and a good writer.
In the essay "Everybody's Protest Novel" Baldwin examines the
nature and purpose of the protest novel. He devotes a good deal of
attention to "Uncle Tom's Cabin" which he describes as "that corner-

stone of American social protest fiction."13 He labels the book a very
bad novel and accuses its author of sentimentality and therefore
In discussing the nature of the protest novel, Baldwin stresses the
distinction between literature and sociology. It is impossible, he states,
to discuss these two things as if they were one and the same. The bad
protest novel should not be forgiven on the basis of its good intentions
which is to show how terrible conditions are. For Baldwin, the protest
novels are "a mirror of our confusion, dishonesty, panic, trapped and
immobilised in the sunlit prison of the American dream. They are
fantasies, connecting nowhere with reality, sentimental;"14
Baldwin considers that it is the peculiar triumph of a society-
and its loss-that it is able to convince those people to whom it has
given inferior status of the reality of this decree. This is what happens,
he points out, in Richard Wright's "Native Son." Baldwin sees below
the surface of the novel a complement of that monstrous legend it was
written to destroy. The fault of the novel is that its hero admits the
possibility of his being sub-human.
The analysis of "Native Son" continues in the essay "Many
Thousands Gone." This is the essay which led to the estrangement
examined and discussed by the latter in "Alas, Poor Richard." "Many
Thousands Gone", too, is remarkable for being in great part written
as if from the point of view of the white American. It is very well done,
with a skill that reminds one of Swift: "Up to today we are set at a
division, so that he may not marry our daughters or our sisters, nor
may he-for the most part-eat at our tables or live in our houses." 15

Baldwin's principal objective in this essay appears to be to present
.truth as it would be realized by a white man who has come to a vision
of his reality. The crux of the problem is stated in the following words:
"Our dehumanisation of the Negro then is indivisible from our de-
humanisation of ourselves; the loss of our own identity is the price
we pay for our annulment of his." 16
In "Many Thousands Gone" Baldwin argues for a Negro tradition:
"But the fact is not that 'the Negro has no tradition but that
there has as yet arrived no sensibility sufficiently profound and tough
to make this tradition articulate. For a tradition expresses, after all,
nothing more than the long and painful experience of a people; it
comes out of a battle waged to maintain their integrity or, to put
it more simply, out of their struggle to survive."17
These statements are made in the midst of a discussion of Wright's
novel and implies that Wright's is not the sensibility required. It is
perhaps not too much to say that it has finally arrived in the person
of Baldwin himself.
It is in this essay, too, !that there occurs that terrible passage about
the rage of the American Negro. It is so vivid and powerful a passage
that it deserves to be quoted in full:

"And there is, I should think, no Negro living in America who has
not felt, briefly or for long periods, with anguish sharp or dull, in vary-
ing degrees and to varying effect, simple, naked and unanswerable
hatred; who has not wanted to smash any white face he may en-
counter in a day, to violate, out of motives of the cruellest vengeance,
their women, to break the bodies of all white people and bring them
low, as low as that dust into which he himself has been and is being
trampled; no Negro, finally, who has not had to make his own pre-
carious adjustment to the "nigger" who surrounds him and the "nigger"
in himself." 18
"Carmen Jones: The Dark Is Light Enough" is a delightful piece
of criticism of the movie "Carmen Jones," filmed by 1955 with an all-
Negro cast. The leading characters of the movie are played by Dorothy
Dandridge, Pearl Bailey, Harry Belafonte and Joe Ada'ms. Baldwin has
a good time poking fun at the lyrics (tasteless and vulgar), at Pearl
Bailey's costumes (awful), at Dorothy Dandridge's sexiness (clearly
manufactured), and aft the movie's "lifeless unreality." Yet Baldwin
is very serious at the same time. He suggests watching the movie
while holding in mind three desperate ideas. He also gives a fine defini-
tion of a movie:
"A movie is, literally, a series of images, and what one SEES in
a movie can really be taken, beyond its stammering and misleading
dialogue, as the key to what the movie is actually involved in
saying." 19
The reason he gives for the eroticism of "Carmen Jones" is signi-
ficant. He states that this eroticism is due to the fact that there are
Negro bodies before the camera and that Negroes are associated in the
public mind with sex. This leads on to a conjecture as to what Ameri-
cans take sex to be. In spite of the film's limitation, Mr. Baldwin con-
cludes, it is one of the most important all-Negro movies Hollywood
has yet produced.
Part Two of "Notes Of A Native Son" conveys with a crushing
finality the reality of what it means to be a Negro in America. The
first essay, "The Harlem Ghetto", describes Harlem. Baldwin uses
similies sparingly, and in this essay there is one which does all that
could possibly be expected of it:
"All of Harlem is pervaded by a sense of congestion, rather like
the insistent, maddening, claustrophobic pounding in the skull that
comes from trying to breathe in a very small room with all the
windows shut." 20
Several times in his essays Baldwin states his contempt for
American intelligence and his view that Americans are afraid of the
intellectual life. Thus, in "The Harlem Ghetto," this statement occurs
that "the American cult of literacy has chiefly operated only to provide
a market for the "Reader's Digest" and the "Daily News;"21
This essay examines the nature and role of the Negro press, the
function of the Negro church, and the relationship of Negroes and

Jews to each other. Many of the faults and vices of the Negro press
are due to imitation of the white press. There are probably more
churches in Harlem than in any other ghetto in New York and they
are going full blast every night and some of them are filled with pray-
ing people every day. The relation of the Negro to the Jew is ambivalent.
The Negro views the Jew as a member of another persecuted race.
At the same time, most of the businessmen in Harlem are Jews o
that they are viewed as being in the American tradition of exploitation
of the Negro and are accordingly hated.

"Journey to Atlanta" is one of Baldwin's lighter essays. On the
surface it is an account cf a trip made by two of his brothers with
their singing group "the Melodeers" to Atlanta, Georgia, and the
indignities they suffered there. The account is very moving and inter-
esting as a piece of journalism, but, as usual, Baldwin succeeds in
making the piece much more than a mere narrative:

Baldwin's more important observations in this essay are on the
Negro view of politics. He claims that, of all Americans, Negroes dis-
trust politicians most. They have been best trained to expect nothing
from them. He points out too that the position of most Negro political
leaders is dependent on the continued debasement of fourteen million
Negroes: "should the national ideals be put into practice tomorrow,
countless prominent Negroes would lose their raison d' etre." 22

One of the things that lends interest to this essay is the ironic
humour that Baldwin permits himself when referring to Mr. Warde,
the manager of the tour, who should have looked after the boys'
interest, but didn't:
"This gap, in .fact, it was the province of Mr. Warde to close, but
whether he was simply weary from the trip or overwhelmed by the
aristocratic Mrs. Price, he kept his mouth shut and, indeed, did not
open it again for quite some time." 23

"Mr. Warde, who should have been their spokesman, had not yet
recovered his voice." 24
"the churches, along with Mr. Warde's vigour, seemed unavailable
at the moment."25
"Mr. Warde, in whose bowels last night's bread of fellowship must
have acquired the weight of rock, left the office." 26

One wishes that Mr. Baldwin would indulge himself a little more
frequently in this vein.
"Notes Of A Native Son," the essay which gives this book its name,
is, as I suggested earlier, one cf the first things a person coming to
Baldwin for the first time should read. In it Baldwin paints a portrait
of his father and describes his funeral. He does not flinch from re-
vealing the truth about the relationship between his father and
himself. "We got on badly" he states, "partly because we shared in
our different fashions, the vice of stubborn pride." 27 He reveals that

his father was being eaten up by paranoia and that he had tuber-
culosis. The idea he gives of his home is a grim one and this is reflected
in his writings.
Baldwin also describes in this essay his battle with the white world
in New Jersey and how he nearly committed murder and was himself
nearly murdered in Trenton. As a result of these experiences he came
to realise that his real life was in danger from the hatred he carried
in his own heart. At the end of his great description of the race riot
in Harlem, Baldwin repeats this idea about hatred: "Hatred, which
could destroy so much, never failed to destroy the man who hated
and this was an immutable law."28

The four essays which form Part Three of "Notes Of A Native Son"
all examine the life of the American Negro in the Old World. "En-
counter on the Seine: Black Meets Brown" suggests first of all that
the hey-day of the Negro entertainer in Paris is over. Those enter-
tainers still on the scene are the only ,ones who maintain a useful
comradeship with other Negroes. The American Negro student tends
to be an isolate, suspicious even of other American Negroes: "Thus
the sight o.f a face from home is not invariably a source of joy but
can also quite easily become a source of embarrassment or rage."29

Baldwin also examines in this essay the relation of the American
white to the American Negro when they meet in Paris, the distinction
between the American Negro and the French colonial Negro, and the
alienation between the Negro and the African.

One of the difficulties of writing on Baldwin's essays is that what-
ever one wishes to state has been stated so well already by him. There
is a strong temptation, difficult indeed to resist, to merely repeat after
him, he speaks so calmly and with such authority. Note, for example,
the tone of the ending of this essay:

"What time will bring Americans is at last their own identity. It
is on this dangerous voyage and in the same boat that the American
Negro will make peace with himself and with the voiceless many
thousands gone before him." 30

Baldwin continues his discussion of the Negro in Paris in the
essay "A Question Of Identity" in which he describes the American
student colony there. It becomes patent that the Amercian Negro
student is not in Paris merely to study-he could have done that just
as well at home in the US. What drives him to Paris is the legend of
Paris. The legend allows the student to endure Paris. But there comes a
moment "when one leaves the legend of Paris and finds oneself in the
real and difficult Paris of the present It is at this point, precisely,
that many and many a student packs his bags for home."31

Other students remain and are lost. They attempt to become as
French themselves. But this is impossible for the American, Baldwin
maintains. "The extent of his immersion in French life impresses one

finally as the height cf artificiality, and, even, of presumption." 32
One cannot really judge the validity of Baldwin's views on this matter
but his argument is most convincing. The important point in this essay
is the good to be gained from the sojourn in Europe. "From the vantage
point of Europe he discovers his own country." 33 It is this discovery
that Baldwin reveals in "Nobody Knows My Name."

In "A Question Of Identity," Baldwin refers to "the real and diffi-
cult Paris of the present." This Paris is the one in which the action
of the essay "Equal In Paris" takes place. The essay describes Baldwin's
arrest and imprisonment in Paris for borrowing a stolen hotel sheet
from a friend. He did not know that it had been stolen. There is a
touch of irony in the title of the essay. In Paris, Baldwin and his friend,
who was a white American, got equal treatment-as Americans. The
view given of the state of French justice and of the condition of
French prisons is terrifying to say the least. The experience helped
Baldwin to realize that man's inhumanity to 'man is universal.

The final essay in this book, "Stranger In The Village" derives
its great interest from the quaintness of the situation. A black man,
Baldwin, goes to a tiny Swiss village whose inhabitants have not seen
a Negro before. It is not merely this situation, however, which lends
interest to the essay. It is also the way in which Baldwin is able to
stand outside himself and see himself as the villagers see him.

The people are friendly enough and the emotional reaction to him
is one of wonder, not hate. The children shout Negro! Negro! behind
him but they really mean no harm. The impact of a culture on its
people is well exemplified here. The children who have been taught
that the devil is a black man scream as Baldwin approaches.

As usual, Baldwin pauses to reflect on the Negro problem in
America. He sees at the root of the Negro problem the necessity of
the American white man to find a way of living with the Negro In
order to be able to live with himself. This means that he will have to
jettison the idea of white supremacy. It is the fact that white Americans
hold on to that idea that delays the true emancipation of the American

The Negro problem-this is Baldwin's preoccupation-and it is
perhaps inevitable that the book "Nobody Knows My Name," which is
sub-titled "More Notes Of A Native Son" should have restated and
emphasized some of the themes and arguments ,of "Notes Of A
Native Son." Nevertheless, the essays in the book are all extremely
readable and the ideas lose none of their power and freshness by being
stated in different ways.

"Nobody Knows My Name" derives additional interest and value
from the fact that it contains some searching and revealing discussion
c.f the life and work of Faulkner, Gide, Bergman, Wright and Mailer.
Baldwin writes of these men with great insight and understanding.

The major theme of the book is Baldwin's flight from America to
Europe and, in particular, Paris. It is a theme that recurs throughout
the book together with that of his return to America. It was his
European exile which helped him to achieve a sense of what it means
to be an American and the first essay in the book deals with this
"I left America because I doubted my ability to survive the fury
of the color problem here," writes Baldwin. 34 We know from another
essay in the book that he left for Europe with no intention of return-
ing to America. In the essay "The Exile" he states: "Two years later,
I, too quit America, never intending to return."35 Baldwin feels that
an American writer, in order to achieve that all-important break-
through, very often has to leave his country. This is because the artist
does not encounter in Europe the same suspicion that he encounters
in America. Americans, Baldwin states, (and we have already noted
this idea in "Notes Of A Native Son") have a very deep-seated distrust
of real intellectual effort. The idea is repeated in another essay "No-
body Knows My Name" where Baldwin states Americans have
so little respect for genuine intellectual effort." 36 The American writer
can find himself in Europe precisely because Europe has greater
respect for the intellectual life and because Europeans have lived with
the idea of status for a long time.

Baldwin's experience of Paris includes his attendance at the Con-
ference of Negro-African Writers and Artists opened on Wednesday,
September 19th, 1956, in the Sorobonne's Amphitheatre Descartes, in
Paris. The essay which deals with the conference "Princes and Powers"
is chiefly remarkable as showing Baldwin's grasp of the proceedings
and his great abilities as a reporter. At the same time, he does not
relinquish his position as critic.
His description of the presentation of M. Lasebikan is a good
example of Baldwin's style in this essay. The speaker has just regretted
that it was the missionaries who wrote down the Yoruba language.
"However-and his face brightened again-he lived in the hope that
one day an excavation would bring to light a great literature written
by the Youriba people."37 There is both humour and pathos in this
sentence and shows Baldwin in good form.

Another interesting quality of this essay is the skill with which
Baldwin gives us a clear and arresting picture of each speaker. He
often couples this with a pronouncement of the speaker's worth or
fame. Thus on George Lamming:
"Lamming is tall, raw-boned, untidy, and intense, and one of his
real distinctions is his refusal to be intimidated by the fact that he
is a genuine writer 'The profession of letters is an untidy one,'
he began, looking as though he had dressed to prove it."38

The two essays "Fifth Avenue, Uptown" and "East River Down-
town" both describe the life and frustration of the Negro in Harlem.

In this respect they are akin to "The Harlem Ghetto" in "Notes Of
A Native Son." The total picture is a very grim one indeed and the fact
that Baldwin writes these essays with a calm deliberate poise and
balance, makes it all the more terrifying. Baldwin refutes the argument
of those who point to the existence of big Negro stars, such as Sammy
Davis Jr., as proof of the progress of the Negro. "The inequalities
suffered by the many are in no way justified by the rise of a few. A
few have always risen-in every country, every era, and in the teeth
of regimes which can by no stretch of the imagination be thought of
as free." 39
It is in "Fifth Avenue, Uptown" that Baldwin emphasizes the fact
that what is wrong with America is that Negroes want to be treated
like men and that people who have mastered Kant, Hegel, Shakespeare,
Marx, Freud, and the Bible find this statement utterly impenetrable.
At the end of this essay he repeats an idea that we have Inoted it
"Notes Of A Native Son." "It is a terrible, an inexorable law, that one
cannot deny the humanity of another without diminishing one's own:
in the face of one's victim, one sees oneself." 40

"East River, Downtown" is significant for its assessment of the
effect of the rise of black African nations on the American Negro.
Baldwin chooses as his starting point the riot of American Negroes in
the U.N. shortly after Lumumba's death. He discusses the roles and
influence of two American Negro movements-the student movement
and the Muslim movement. He treats the latter at greater length in
"The Fire Next Time." The essential difference between the two
movements is that the first has as its goal the integration of the blacks
and whites, while the latter aims at total separation of the races.
Baldwin's sympathy is with the students.

The essay "Nobody Knows My Name" is sub-titled "A Letter From
The South" and describes Baldwin's journey to Georgia. It also contains
his assessment of the American South. Yet again he makes the point
about American education: "We do not trust educated people and
rarely, alas, produce them, for we do not trust the independence of
mind which alone makes a genuine education possible. Educated people,
of any colour, are so extremely rare that it is unquestionably one of
the first tasks of a nation to open all its schools to all its citizens. But
the dispute has actually nothing to do with education, as some among
the eminently uneducated know. It has to do with political power and
it has to do with sex. And this is a nation which, most unluckily, knows
very little about either."41 We have already noted similar comments
on American ignorance of political power and sex in "Notes Of A Native
In "Alas, Poor Richard" which is divided into three parts, "Eight
Men," "The Exile," and "Alas, Poor Richard," Baldwin examines the
life and works of Richard Wright and his own relationship to him.
There is no doubt that Baldwin was profoundly influenced by Wright
and also that the two men could not get along with each other. Baldwin
states the importance of Wright to him as follows:

"I had made my pilgrimages to meet him because he was the
greatest black writer in the world for me. In "Uncle Tom's Children,"
in "Native Son," and, above all, in "Black Boy," I found expressed, for
the first time in my life, the sorrow, the rage, and the murderous
bitterness which was eating up my life and the lives of those around
me. His work was an immense liberation of revelation for me. He
become my ally and my witness, and alas! my father." 42
Wright died in Paris in 1961 at the age of fifty-two and his death
was the signal for Baldwin to attempt to assess his work "for the
baffling creator no longer stands between us and his works" he wrote. 43
In spite of his great respect for Wright, Baldwin is only too aware of
his shortcomings.
"In my own relations with him, I was always exasperated by his
notions of society, politics, and history, for they seemed to be utterly
fanciful. I never believed that he had any real sense of how a society
is put together."44
It was partly Baldwin's determination to pursue his own line of
thinking and not to follow that of the older man which led to the
strained relations between them. They argued and disagreed about a
lot of things, for example, the meaning of Europe for an American
Negro. Wright saw Paris as a "city of refuge;" Baldwin saw it as such
but with reservations.
It was Wright's support which helped Baldwin to secure his first
fellowship, the Eugene F. Saxton Fellowship. This was on the basis
of Baldwin's first novel which he was writing at the time. The novel
was a failure and Baldwin felt that he had disappointed Wright
severely. From the height of his experience, he now looks back to
say "The young think that failure is the Siberian end of the line,
banishment from all living, and tend to do what I then did-which was
to hide." 45
In 1946 Wright went to Paris at the invitation of the French Gov-
ernment. Baldwin followed in 1948. Shortly after, his essay "Everybody's
Protest Novel" (printed in "Notes Of A Native Son") was published in
Zero magazine. Baldwin criticizes "Native Son" at the end of that
essay and Wright felt that the young writer had betrayed him. This
led to a quarrel which was never really patched up. Baldwin is honest
enough to admit that "I had used his work as a kind of springboard
into my own. His work was a road-block in my road." 46 But he could
not really see this at the time.
Baldwin's essays are intensely personal and this one is no exception.
"I had always been considered very dark, both Negroes and whites had
despised me for it, and I had despised myself."47 This is quite an
admission for a man of Baldwin's stature to make and many of his
remarks about Wright could apply to himself. For instance: "It is still
not possible to overstate the price a Negro pays to climb out of
obscurity-for it is a particular price, involved with being a Negro
But it was to this (black) condition, at least in part, that he owed
his safety and power and fame." 4

The price is sometimes death. "It's a wonder I wasn't killed"
he writes in "The Black Boy Looks At The White Boy," as he describes
how he went wandering through the underside of Paris, "drinking,
screwing, fighting."49 He had reached that point of despair that many
artists come to. What probably saved him is that he could not say that
nobody knew his name. He had, as his revenge on the white world,
achieved "a power which outlast kingdom." so
One would have imagined that Baldwin had said all he wanted
to say about the Negro problem in "Notes Of A Native Son" and
"Nobody Knows My Name." It is perhaps inevitable that "The Fire
Next Time" should contain ideas and thoughts first put forward in
those two books. Nevertheless, this book is a distinctive and distinguish-
ed achievement. It is the culmination of all those essays which have
gone before. Its title is suggestive. Compared to the calm and deliberate
control of most of the previous essays, "The Fire Next Time" is fiery
and much more polemical.
There are really two essays in this book. One is a letter from
Baldwin to his fifteen-year-old nephew, also named James, on the one-
hundredth anniversary of Emancipation. The ideas expressed are repre-
sented by the following samples:
"You can only be destroyed by believing that you really are what
the white world calls a nigger." 51
"And I know, which is much worse, and this is the crime of which
I accuse my country and my countrymen, and for which neither I nor
time nor history will ever forgive them, that they have destroyed and
are destroying hundreds of thousands of lives and do not know and
do not want to know it." 52
"You were born in a society which spelled out with brutal
clarity, and in as many ways as possible, that you were a worthless
human being." 53
It is immediately noticeable that this is a different James Baldwin
from the one with whom we have been dealing so far. This one sl
more direct and much more hard-hitting. The careful prose is still
controlled but more of bitterness is allowed to tinge and colour it.
The other essay is "Down At The Cross-Letter from A Region
in My Mind." The phrase "my mind" suggests the idea of giving
someone a piece of one's mind and this is precisely what Baldwin
does in this powerful and violent essay. It is addressed, it would seem,
pointedly and directly at white America and it is a prophecy and a
warning, almost a jeremiad.
Baldwin begins by referring to his religious conversion at fourteen
when he was convicted of sin. The dangers of Lenox Avenue made
him feel threatened and he also felt himself to be, at adolescence, one
of the most depraved people on earth. Many of his friends dropped
out of school and his father wanted him to do so too, but Baldwin
refused. He saw some value in education and thus escaped the fate,
to some extent, of many of his friends.

He found as his experience of the hostility of the white world
grew that he needed a handle or a lever, a means of inspiring fear.
"Neither civilized reason nor Christian love would cause any of those
people to treat you as they presumably wanted to be treated; only the
fear of your power to retaliate would cause them to do that, or to seem
to do it, which was (and is) good enough." 54 He argues that there
are not many Negroes who wish to be loved by the white, they simply
don't want to be beaten over the head by the whites every instant of
their brief passage on the planet. "White people in this country will
have quite enough to do in learning how to accept and love them-
selves and each other, and when they have achieved this-which will
not be tomorrow and may very well be never-the Negro problem will
no longer exist, for it will no longer be needed." 55
Somehow or other, a new note of freedom has entered Baldwin's
writing in this essay. It is as if he feels secure as a result of his
acknowledged status and that he can tell the white Americans exactly
what he feels. For example, "But the Negro's experience of the white
world cannot create in him any respect for the standards by which
the white world claims to live." 56
As a teen-ager, Baldwin, seeking to escape the dangers which
threatened him in his environment found that he needed a gimmick.
His career in church turned out to be his gimmick. He had found
that he had almost no capabilities and he did not yet dare to take the
idea of becoming a writer seriously. The experience of his conversion
is the experience so vividly conveyed in "Go Tell It On The Mountain."
He became a preacher for three years and one of his aims was to
outshine his father, who was also a preacher.
Eventually Baldwin became disillusioned with the Church. He
could not reconcile the theory of Christianity with the actual practice
of Christians. He refers more than once in this essay to the Italian
priests and bishops blessing the Italian soldiers who were on their
way to ravage Ethiopia.
Baldwin's discussion of the failure of Christianity is a thought-
provoking one. It is also wide-ranging and deals with the rape of Africa
as well as the Jewish holocaust in Germany. He challenges the validity
of Christianity. If the concept of God is valid its use should be to
make us more loving. "If God cannot do this, then it is time we got
rid of him." 7
This is perhaps going too far but it would seem to indicate Baldwin's
growing disillusionment. This is not to say that he is turning to Allah
although he does speak of Elijah Muhammad, leader of the Black
Muslims, with respect. His account of his visit to Elijah is very
illuminating. He does not, however, agree with the total separation
plea of the Black Muslims nor does he think it feasible.
The central message of "Down At The Cross" is this: "America,
of all Western nations, has been best placed to prove the uselessness
and the obsolescence of the concept of colour. But it has not dared to

accept this opportunity, or even to conceive of it as an opportunity." s5
This failure Baldwin sees as unforgivable and highly dangerous:
Throughout the essay the sense of danger is present. This sense is
best summed up in the words from the song: "God gave Noah the rain-
bow sign, No more water, the fire next time."
As we have pointed out, the religious experience described so
vividly in "The Fire Next Time" is the experience that forms the
basis of Baldwin's first published novel "Go Tell It On The Mountain."
The opening words of "Down At The Cross" are: "I underwent, during
the summer that I became fourteen, a prolonged religious crisis." 59
Later on in the essay, Baldwin describes the conversion:

The summer wore on, and things got worse. I became more guilty
and more frightened, and kept all this bottled up inside me, and natu-
rally, inescapably one night, when this woman had finished preaching,
everything came roaring, screaming, cryingout, and I fell to the ground
before the altar. It was the strangest sensation I have ever had in my
life-up to that time or since and I was on the floor all night. Over
me, to bring me 'through,' the sisters sang and rejoiced and prayed.
And in the morning, when they raised me, they told me that I was
'saved.' 60
This then, in Baldwin's own words, is the experience around which
the novel is built. It provided the framework of the novel. Within the
body of the novel Baldwin, with great artistry and skill, uses a series
of flashbacks to reveal the past life and troubles of each member of
this Negro family.
The family name is Grimes and the story is told from the view-
point of fourteen-year-old John Grimes. The figure of the head of the
family, the evangelist Gabriel Grimes, dominates the novel but the
women of the family, John's mother, Elizabeth, and his mother's aunt,
Florence, are powerful and moving. It develops that Gabriel is really
John's stepfather and that John is an illegitimate child born to
Elizabeth before Gabriel met her. Roy and Sarah, and the baby Ruth,
children of the marriage, complete the family.

The father, Gabriel, is an authoritarian figure, harsh and domin-
eering. There is a constant tension between him and John. One reason
is John's being the son of another man. But more important is the
fact that Roy, truly his father's son, and the apple of his eye, signally
lacks those good qualities which John possesses. In other words, Gabriel
would have had his son be the good boy and his stepson the renegade.
Unforutnately this is not the case, hence the tension set up not only
between Gabriel and John but in the entire household.

The centre of the family life is the store-front church four blocks
up Lenox Axenue, Harlem, on a corner not far from the hospital. Here
we meet a number of very interesting characters who figure in the
novel: Father James, the pastor, who nips flowering sin in the bud,
Elisha his nephew and a young preacher as well; Praying Mother

Washington, Ella Mae Washington, her seventeen-year-old granddaugh-
ter, Sister McCandless, and Sister Price. Gabriel is the head deacon
of this church, "the Temple of the Fire Baptized."
The passion and fever of the prayer meetings, where the members
sing, dance, clap hands, beat their tambourines, and are struck by
the power of the Holy Ghost, are conveyed with great accuracy and
clarity. There is for example that magnificent passage prefaced by
the words "And then Elisha danced." At the end of this passage, where
Baldwin's words convey the very rhythm and movement of Elisha's
dance, we see Elisha drop, "like some animal felled by a hammer."61

John's conversion is intimately connected with his sense of
depravity as he struggles, bewildered and confused, with the strange
powers and urges raging in his adolescent body. "He had sinned. In
spite of the saints, his mother and his father, the warnings he had
heard from his earliest beginnings, he had sinned with his hands a
sin that was hard to forgive. In the school lavatory, alone, thinking
of the boys, older, bigger, braver, who made bets with each other as
to whose urine could arch higher, he had watched in himself a trans-
formation of which he would never dare to speak." 62

John's problems are complicated by the fact that he is very intelli-
gent and highly imaginative. He clings to a faith in his intelligence in
order to withstand his father. John cherished something that his
father could not reach. "It was his hatred and his intelligence that he
cherished, the one feeding the other." 63
Part two of the novel is entitled "The Prayers of The Saints" and
contains the "prayers" of Florence, Gabriel, and Elizabeth. We see the
lives of each of these as they pray in church.
Florence, now sixty years old, is sick and she knows that death is
near. The fact that she had deserted her dying mother and gone North
to see a better life haunts her conscience. In the North, she had met
Frank, a careless happy-go-lucky man, who deserted her after ten
years of married life. Her imminent death forces her to call on God.
"And she cried aloud, as she had never in all her life cried before, fall-
ing on her face on the altar." 64
Gabriel's Prayer is an account of Gabriel's sinful youth, his con-
version, his life as a preacher, and his life with Deborah, the shape-
less black woman who had been raped by many white men in her youth.
Highlights of the account are the revelation of the worthlessness of
the Negro ministers and Gabriel's backsliding into sin with the pretty
but promiscuous Esther who had a son, Royal, for him. Esther had
died in child-birth, Deborah died years later, and Gabriel had come
North, where he met and married Elizabeth.
As a girl, Elizabeth had come North too, following her lover boy,
Richard, who promised to marry her once they reached New York City.
Richard had not married her but had committed suicide after being
unjustly imprisoned, leaving her with an unborn child.

Part Three of the novel, "The Threshing Floor" describes John's
all-night trance. It is a terrifying and moving account which leaves
us convinced of the truth of the conversion.
"Go Tell It On The Mountain" was published in 1954. It is not
the first novel Baldwin wrote. That one failed. At twenty-four, says
Baldwin, "I packed my bags and went to France, where I finished, God
knows how, "Go Tell It On The Mountain." The quality of this novel
proves indisputably that this time Baldwin knew how to write a good
In his essay on Norman Mailer, "The Black Boy Looks At The White
Boy," Baldwin writes as follows: "I confided to Norman that I was
very apprehensive about the reception of "Giovanni's Room," and he
was good enough to write some very encouraging things about it when
it came out." 65 Baldwin makes it sound as if Mailer were doing him
a favour but the subsequent success of the novel has no doubt more
than borne out whatever Mailer may have written about it.

"Giovanni's Room" is a short, intense, beautifully written novel
about a young American caught in a moral conflict between homosex-
ual and heterosexual love. The protagonist is David, blonde, American,
and highly sensitive. His sweetheart, Hella, is also American and plans
to marry him but keeps putting it off. Giovanni is the beautiful Italian
boy, who works as a barman and who comes between David and Hella.
The scene of the novel is Paris and we get, as the story proceeds,
a pretty good picture of that famous city. In many ways, it is a picture
similar to that presented in Hemingway's "Fiesta." There is even the
coincidence of a holiday in Spain, although, in this novel, it is Hella
alone who takes it while she attempts to think out her relationship
with David.
Baldwin makes extremely effective use of the flashback to unfold
the story, as he indeed does in three novels. Almost the entire story
of the novel passes through David's 'mind as he packs and prepares to
return to Paris from the South of France. At the very beginning of
the book we see David:
"I stand at the window of this great house in the south of France
as night falls, the night which is leading me to the most terrible
morning of my life. I have a drink in hand, there is a bottle at my
elbow." 66 And at the very end:
"And at last I step out into the morning and I lock the door behind
me. I cross the road and drop the keys into the old lady's 'mailbox."67
Between these two points, the action of the story moves mostly in
Davids' consciousness. Very rapidly we get a good idea of what Hella
is like:
"I can see her, very elegant, tense, and glittering, surrounded by
the light which fills the salon of the ,ocean liner, drinking rather too
fast, and laughing, and watching the men. That was how I met her,

in a bar in Saint-Germain-des-Pres, she was drinking and watching,
and that was why I liked her, I thought she would be fun to have fun
with. That was how it began, that was all it meant to me; I am not
sure now, in spite of everything, that it ever really meant more than
that to me. And I don't think it ever really meant more than that to
her-at least not until she made that trip to Spain and, finding herself
there, alone, began to wonder, perhaps, if a lifetime of drinking and
watching the men was exactly what she wanted. But it was too late by
that time. I was already with "Giovanni."
We learn that Hella is on the high seas, on her way back to
America. And where is Giovanni? We soon learn the answer with a
"I am too various to be trusted. If this were not so I would not be
alone in this house tonight. Hella would not be on the high seas. And
Giovanni would not be about to perish, sometime between this night
and this morning, on the guillotine." 69

It is obvious from the tone of this passage that David is labouring
under a sense of guilt. He feels that he has betrayed his own moral
convictions and that he has fought a losing battle with his own nature.
Giovanni is not the first boy David has slept with. In America there
was Joey, and others, and he has fled to Paris to attempt to escape from
his lust. But there is no escape.
"Giovanni's Room" is a moral book which explores the validity of
homosexual love. The scales seem to be weighted against homosex-
uality since it leads to the ruin of those involved directly or in-
directly in it. It may be helpful to examine Baldwin's own views on
homosexuality as stated elsewhere. In the essay on Andre Gide, "The
Male Prison" he writes: "And that argument, for example, as to
whether or not homosexuality is natural seems to me completely point-
less-pointless because I really do not see what difference the answer
makes. It seems clear, in any case, at least in the world we know, that
no matter what encyclopedias of physical and scientific knowledge
are brought to bear, the answer never can be yes."70
The real problem is not whether homosexuality is natural but what
it does to people. "The Male Prison" was published in 1954, "Giovanni's
Room in 1957 and they are related. It will be profitable to let one
comment on the other. Of Madeleine, Gide's wife, Baldwin notes that
she was not so much a victim of Gide's sexual nature as she was a
victim of his overwhelming guilt. The same may be said for Hella.
Similarly, of Gide's relations with men, Baldwin writes that since he
clearly could not forgive himself for his anomaly, he must certainly
have despised them-as David grows to despise Giovanni. It is not
necessary, however, Baldwin points out, to despise one's Inferiors-
whose inferiority is simply demonstrated by the fact that they appear
to relish, without guilt, their sensuality. Such is Giovanni's case and,
as a result of this, David comes to look on his room as a prison from
which he must escape.

Escape becomes possible through Giovanni's deterioration, which
results in his murder of Guillaume and his execution. But escape is
only partial-there is no escape from the mind. David ends up in a
terrible isolation. As Baldwin notes in "The Male Prison", "It is worth
observing, too, that when men can no longer love women they also
cease to love or respect or trust each other, which makes their isola-
tion complete." 71
Baldwin seems deeply concerned with the problem of homosexual-
ity, since he treats it again in "Another Country." The dedication of
"Giovanni's Room" is a significant quotation from Whitman: "I am
the man, I suffered, I was there."
All the experience, anguish, and torment that we have already
noted in Baldwin's essays and two earlier novels seem to have found
their way into his major novel "Another Country," published in 1963.
"Another Country" created something like a literary explosion and
was a runaway best-seller. It is a massive book and well deserves the
judgement delivered by Edmund Wilson, in the New Yorker, on Its
author: "He is not only one of the best Negro writers that we have
ever had in this country, but he is one of the best."
What stands out most strikingly from the novel is the pathos and
pity of the life and fate of Rufus. Rufus is alive and stirring in the
reader's consciousness long after the novel has been put down. He is
the supreme example of the American Negro crushed by the malicious
forces of a white America which should be his country but turns out
in effect to be another country for him.
It is impossible to imagine how the tragic condition of the Harlem
Negro could be better depicted than it is in the first chapter of "Another
Country." As the novel opens, we see Rufus at the end of his tether,
on the brink of desperation. "And he was broke. And he had nowhere
to go." 72 He is one of the fallen-"for the weight of this city was
murderous." 73 The most elementary human needs seem impossible of
satisfaction. "He wanted t0 go in and use the bathroom but he was
ashamed of the way he looked. He had been in hiding, really, for nearly
a month."74
Rufus' mind travels back seven months, "a lifetime ago," to his
first meeting with Leona. Leona was a Southern white girl and she
came to live with Rufus, the talented drummer. From the moment
they meet we see the decline of both of them, a steady deterioration
until they seem to be eating out each other's hearts. Leona ends up
mad and Ru-fus commits suicide, jumping off the George Washington
Bridge of which Leona had remarked on their first night together, "It's
real beautiful."
Baldwin introduces us into the real and deadly world of New
York and Harlem, a world of liquor, sex, dope, and the language that
goes with it all. Rufus has friends but they cannot save him. There
is Vivaldo whom he introduces to Leona:
"Shit, man, come on in. That's Leona. Leona, this here's a friend
of mine, Vivaldo. For short. His real name is Daniel Vivaldo Moore. He
is an Irish wop." 75

There is Cass and her novelist husband Richard. There is his
sister Ida. And there had been Eric, his homosexual lover and an actor.
But the friendship of a few white friends is not sufficient to save
Rufus from the white world. If anything, it only emphasizes their
superior advantages as whites and, correspondingly, his cross of colour.
"The lowest whore in Manhattan would be protected as long as she
had Vivaldo on her arm. This was because Vivaldo was white."76 He
and his white friends cannot even speak naturally to each other. The
yawning chasm of colour is always present. Cass, for instance, speak-
ing to him, laughs and says "You're a funny boy" and immediately
corrects "boy" to "person."
In a sense, therefore, Rufus' treatment of Leona is his revenge on
the white world but revenge tends to boomerang. He feels remorse and
he cannot escape his guilt, cannot -forget. "You can't change
anything that hurt so badly, went so deep, and changed the world
forever. It's not possible to forget anybody you've destroyed" Rufus
thinks. 77
It is one of the key points of the novel that the concept of colour
is intimately conveyed by Vivaldo's experience in Harlem when he is
blackmailed by a Negro man and a Negro girl. "What I don't under-
stand" the Negro man says "is why you white boys always come up-
town, sniffing around our black girls. You don't see none of us spooks
downtown, sniffing around your white girls." 78

"What do two people want from each other when they get to-
gether; Do you know?"79 Does anybody know, for that matter? One
person who seems to have the answers is Cass. Once she advised Rufus:
"I hope that you won't sit around blaming yourself too much,
or too long. That won't undo anything. When you're older you'll see,
I think, that we all commit our crimes. The thing is not to lie about
them-to try to understand what you have done, why you have done
it. That way, you can begin to forgive yourself. That's very important.
If you don't forgive yourself you'll never be able to forgive anybody
else and you'll go on committing the same crimes forever."so
This seems to be very sane and sound advice. But life is not so
simple. Later when Cass has an affair with Eric she tells her husband
Richard the truth and this blows the marriage apart. She once
accused Vivaldo "You know so little about life. About women."

Vivaldo countered with: "How do you find out about life? About
women? Do you know a lot of men?" sl
Even if his characters do not know a lot about life, about men
and women, Baldwin does. He knows much about the daily frustrations
and conflicts of inter-personal relations. He knows how difficult it is
to face the world and not be isolated. He knows how difficult it is for
two persons to live together and, though nominally in love, refrain
from literally murdering each other. A writer, Baldwin notes in one
of his essays, writes only out of his own experiences. Baldwin's experi-
ence must have been tremendous to have enabled him to write

"Another Country." He will find it difficult to surpass this achievement
but we must nevertheless hope that he will be able to surpass it.
Meanwhile, Baldwin has written a play which marks a further
advance in his crusade to bring to white America a consciousness of
the enormity of its crimes against the Negroes. The play is plainly
propagandist but it is also a drama of considerable literary power.
The play is dedicated "To the memory of Medgar Evers, and his
widow and his children and to the memory of the dead children of
Birmingham." Baldwin once took a short trip with Medgar Evers to
the backwoods of Mississippi. When they parted they promised to see
each other again soon. They never did. "When he died" writes Baldwin
in his notes to the play, "something entered into me which I cannot
describe, but it was then that I resolved that nothing under heaven
would prevent me from getting this play done."
Accordingly the play is full of rage and fury and with the rough
language that men use to express these emotions. At the heart of the
drama lie the concepts of race and of Christianity. In this respect it
is closely akin to "The Fire Next Time" and the presentation is just
as powerful.
The play is based, distantly, on the case of Emmet Till, the Negro
youth who was murdered in Mississippi in 1955. The youth murdered
in the play is Richard Henry, son of the Negro preacher. Meridian
Henry. Richard has recently returned to his Southern hometown from
New York City. Baldwin does not cavil at drawing Richard's character,
he does not make him blameless. In New York, he was a rising star,
much loved in Harlem. He becomes a drug addict and returns home
in order to break the habit. It is his refusal to be intimidated by the
greater violence and brutality of the Southern White which leads to
his death.
The whole town knows that Lyle Britten killed Richard and his
arrest and trial are a mere 'mockery. Nevertheless, the whole proceed-
ings give the playwright scope in which to make his stunning and
devastating points. Almost certainly one would have to see the play
acted in order to experience its full impact. Baldwin's stage setting is
precise and careful. Thus in the first two acts we should be aware of
the Negro church, the dome of the courthouse and the American flag.
In Act Three, we should be aware of the courthouse, the steeple of
the church, and the cross. These are not mere props but are essentials
to the irony of the play.
The play is a revelation of the whole Southern white attitude to
the Negro. The whites betray their fear and ignorance of Negro sex-
uality. They hide behind a nominal Christianity and attempt pitifully
to justify their doctrine of racial supremacy. The great pity is that
the shambles they make of Christianity leads some of the Negroes
to lose their faith in God. At best, some of them think that God must
be white. "I don't believe in God, Grandma," says Richard.82 And
again, speaking about his gun, "This is all that the man understands.

He doesn't understand nothing else, nothing else." 83 The real tragedy
of the play is not Richard's death, and as that is but the white man's
refusal to understand that the Negro is human.

We referred, at the beginning, to the cult of James Baldwin.
Baldwin needs no worshippers. He needs readers and doers. What do
we know about him? We know that he is a writer and a Negro. The
two facts are inextricably bound up with each other. As a writer he
has tremendous literary talent and this talent is diverse. He is a first-
class essayist, novelist and playwright. As a Negro he has undergone
the experience which, coupled with a fine intelligence and perception,
gives him the authority with which he speaks. He knows what he is
talking about.

Baldwin has written highly significant literature and his value
has been recognized. We do not know whether he really is "America's
most famed writer," but we tend to agree with the reviewer of the
New York Herald Tribune who wrote that "James Baldwin must be
ranked as our most relevant man of letters." For he is relevant, not
only to America, but to the whole world. White and non-white should
read him, for as long as we are alive we are all concerned with his
major themes-love, colour, race, sex, justice and equality.



Key to Quotations.

N.N.S. Notes Of A Native Son Michael Joseph.
N.K. Nobody Knows My Name Dell.
F.N.T. The Fire Next Time Penguin.
G.T.I. Go Tell It On The Mountai Signet.
G.R. Giovanni's Room Dell.
A.C. Anolher Country Dell.
B.M.C. Blues For Mister Charlie. Dell.

1. N.K. 146; 2. N.K. 147; 3. N.K. 12; 4. N.N.S. 15; 5. N.K. 171; 6. N.K. 171; 7. N.N.S.
11-12; 8. N.N.S. 12; 9. N.N.S. 13; 10, N.N.S. 11. N.N.S. 14; 12. N.N.S. 15; 13. N.N.S.
191; 14. N.N.S. 25; 15. N.N.S. 31; 16. N.N.S. 30; 17. N.N.S. 39; 18. N.N.S. 41; 19. N.N.S.
51; 20. N.N.S. 59; 21. N.N.S. 60; 22. N.N.S. 75; 23. N.N.S. 78; 24. N.N.S. 78; 25. N.N.S.
79; 26. N.N.S. 81; 27. N.N.S. 84-85; 28. N,N.S. 108; 29. N.N.S. 114; 30. N.N.S. 31.
N.N.S. 125; 32. N.N.S. 128; 33. N.N.S. 131; 34. N.K. 17; 35. N.K. 156; 36. N.K. 91; 37.
N.K. 30; 38. N.K. 44; 39. N.K. 59. 40. N.K. 66; 41. N.K. 88-89; 42. N.K. 153;43. N.K.
147; 44. N.K. 148; 45. N.K. 155; 44. N.K. 148; 45. N.K. 155; 46. N.K. 157; 47. N.K. 162; 48.
N.K. 162, 168; 49. N.K. 177; 50. N.K. 183; 51. F.N.T. 13; 52. F.N.T. 14; 53. F.N.T. 16. 54.
F.N.T. 27; 55. F.N.T. 27; 56. F.N.T. 28; 57. F.N.T. 46; 58. F.N.T. 80; 59. F.N.T. 23; 60.
F.N.T. 33-34; 61. G.T.I. 15; 62. G.T.I. 17; 63. G.T.I. 19; 64. G.T.I. 79; 65. N.K. 177; 66.
G.R. 7; 67. G.R. 224; 68. G.R. 9; 69. G.R. 10; 70. N.K. 128; 71. N.K. 132; 72. A.C. 9; 73.
A.C. 10; 74. A.C. 10; 75. A.C. 26; 76. A.C. 31; 77. A.C. 48; 78. A.C. 59; 79. A.C. 62;
80. A.C. 71; 81. A.C. 109; 82. B.M.C. 33; 83. B.M.C. 37

"The Effect of Modern Technology on

Small Developing Countries with

Surplus Labour"

THE IMPACT of modern technology on the structure of economic
development in the West Indies in the last decade has caused some
serious revaluation of its role in small open economies. The West Indian
economies have experienced in this period, growth rates which are
on par with the highest in the world. Yet not only has this develop-
ment made no inroads into their backlogs of unemployment but a
number of them have had to rely on a heavy emigration rate just to
hold it at a steady 10 to 15%. Further when one looks at the unem-
ployment rates of 2 to 3% given by the 1946 census in the then
British islands, one is tempted to suggest that it was the very tech-
nology which caused the backlog.
Industrialisation once regarded as a panacea for the ills of a back-
ward agricultural society is now viewed with some apprehension. In
this paper the problem is examined from the production side, firstly
to show how, under both the private and public sector conditions of
open economy, the entrepreneur and the state capitalist are motivated
to use production techniques which are detrimental to employment
maximisation, and secondly to suggest and examine one possible
solution-the centralised allocation of resources through a system of
regional economic planning. This solution does not of course exhaust
the feasible political possibilities but it appears to us that it has
become lost in the modern discussion which has concentrated mainly
on decentralised allocation systems such as free trade areas and
common markets.
The paper is not intended to be a rigorously argued academic
document but rather a device for fermenting discussion and comment
which may possibly lead to formal research on the problem area.


The open economy can best be described as a modern internation-
alised version cf the old laissez-faire doctrine, which postulates free
movement of capital, labour, raw material, and technical knowledge
resources and their products across national boundaries with the in-
ternational market finding the efficient allocation programmes in
space and time. Using this concept, the West Indian islands (and of
course the whole of the under-developed world which have not adopted
the closed model) would be seen by definition as an area in which

modern industry cannot operate efficiently-if it were not such an
area then the international market would have allocated industry to
it. The West Indies would then be no different from any depressed
region in the developed capitalist economies, such as the Appalachian
Mountain region in the U.S.A. or the North East area of England,
with the sugar industry playing the obsolescence role that mining
and ship building are playing in those areas.
Within the open economy framework, there are usually two solutions
to this problem-migration of labour to the more productive sectors
of the international economy or tax incentives to provide capital
mobility across national boundaries. Both solutions have been operat-
ing in the region throughout the period. Puerto Rico has, of course,
been the epitome of this model in operation in so far as it has suffered
the smallest amount of deviation from the theoretical conditions.
[Deviations can be defined as restrictions on the free movement of
any particular economic resource or good across the national bound-
aries which matter.] Puerto Rico, of course, still has an unemploy-
ment rate of between 8.3 to 15.6%.1
Under the terms of reference we have set ourselves, we shall con-
centrate mainly on the second solution. The delineation of this
solution as "tax incentives to capital" is of course simplified to the
point of distortion. It is well known that capitalists are taxed in their
own countries on the profits they earn elsewhere. Tax exemption
therefore turns out merely as a gift from the government of the under-
developed open economy to the government of the country of origin
of the capitalist. 2 Under these conditions, the major incentive to the
entrepreneur to invest in the under-developed open economy is the
low prevailing price of labour which would give him a larger return
on his investment than if he were to invest within his own economy.
This emphasis on comparative advantage has been implicit in
the drawing up of the industrial sectors of the five year plans for the
open economies of the region. 3 The method of approach is to look
at the censuses of production of the developed capitalist economies
of Western Europe and North America and abstract those industries
which have the greatest ratio of wages to gross output. On prima
facie grounds, these industries would show the lowest money cost of
production and therefore the highest profits. A high wages/gross out-
put ratio is of course a necessary but not sufficient criterion for low
production costs to private entrepreneurs. Some other indices which
qualify this basic condition are:
(1) the amount of mechanical horsepower in use per operative,
(2) the consumption of fuel per operative,
(3) the weight of materials used per operative,
(4) the average size of establishment, and
(5) the localisation coefficient of the Industry
W. Arthur Lewis4 has shown qualitatively how all these indices affect
the feasibility of the particular industry under private sector

Before the discussion can be taken further, the industries must
be categorised into the following:
(1) Import Substitution Industries.
(2) In Situ Industries.
(3) Export Industries.

(1) Import Substitution Industries
Almost any industry can be defined as an import substitution
industry since all industries are stages on the way to the production
of a final consumption good on which most societies would place a
value. Perhaps the most bizarre exception to this general rule in the
region is the fur coat industry in Puerto Rico where raw -furs are im-
ported and turned into fur coats for export to the U.S. and other tem-
perate countries. The point is that import substitution industries are
an economic rather than a technological concept. Assuming the
proper tariffs, subsidies, etc. almost any industry can become valid
for a given economy and as such can become an import substitution
industry. Of course these would be deviations from the open economy
Under the open economy framework, the possible set of industries
which can be included in this group is narrowed considerably. The
two major restricting variables are the optimal size of plant and the
size of the local market. For the great majority .of industries the values
of these variables are much larger than the values which are valid
for each island. On the other hand, if an industry is found valid for
one island, the chances are that it would be valid for the others as
well; regional export markets are therefore ruled out on a priori ground.
The cement industry in the region is a good example of this problem.
The cost of intra-regional transport is also a parameter to which
an ambivalent position is the only proper one for each island-state
under prevailing conditions. Low intra-regional transport costs make
it possible to serve a wider regional market than a single island, from
a single factory. The optimal position for that factory may not be in
a particular island. On the other hand, if it is, that island benefits
that much more. Thus the ambivalence is set up.
The production technology of this kind of industry is, in most
cases, pre-determined, e.g., beer, cement, and as such not much use
can be 'made of the low wage effect for lower capital-labour intensi-
ties than would operate elsewhere.

(2) In Situ Industries
In situ industries are those whose products must be consumed at
the point in space of production (e.g. houses) and/or simultaneously
with production (e.g. electricity and transport) This definition ex-
cludes industries for which consumption does not necessarily take
place in situ or simultaneously with production, even though they
must be sited at a particular point in space -for production reasons (e.g.

oil, bauxite) We deal with those latter under the export category
because most of their output is exported.
It can be seen therefore that this set of industries was either
local or non-existent. (Although we are sure that if it were possible
the region would have provided a good market for roads, houses, etc.,
the propensity to import being what it is in the islands.) While some
of these industries are both production and consumption goods (e.g.
roads) and are to that extent concomitant with income growth, most
of them have tended to post-date income growth rather than precede
it under open economy conditions. As such, therefore, they have been
produced either by the public sector as free goods or at subsidized
prices, or have been provided by the private sector for the few at the
higher prices which must be charged to cover the resulting higher pro-
duction costs.
Now these industries are perhaps the most difficult to analyse for
the following reasons:-
1. They usually have a production technology which has a wide
range of possible capital-labour ratios.
2. Both the private and the public sectors are possible producers
under open economy conditions.
3. There is no competition from imports so that the prices of
the product (goods or service) can be determined purely by
local conditions.

Under the private sector framework, all that can be said is that
revenue minus costs must be a positive number over most of the pro-
duction periods. Since monopoly conditions hold, revenue is variable
over a wide range. Since the production technique is also variable,
costs are also unspecified.
If the public sector is the producer even the condition that revenue
minus costs must be a positive number does not hold. In the first
place, certain products have no direct revenue (e.g. roads, except, of
course, where tolls are imposed) In the second place, the industry can
be subsidized continually by grants and loans from the public purse.

For these reasons and because of the heavy unemployment rates,
there is a serious suggestion that the State should motivate these
industries, both private and public sectors, to adopt a retrogressive
technology, i.e., a production technique which is known to be obsolete
in the advanced countries and therefore almost by definition more
labour intensive. Road production is the example most often cited.

It is difficult to see how this can be achieved if the industry is in
the private sector. Under the open economy framework, the entre-
preneur will raise his capital and buy his equipment from the ad-
vanced economies. These conditions will tend to make modern equip-
ment a more economic investment. Further, as long as free trade
union movement exists in the economy, wage rates will not remain static.

The entrepreneur will therefore want to be several jumps ahead of
the productivity increase-wage rate increase cycle. By this, we mean
that he can maximise his net returns by installing equipment which
can withstand several wage rate increases before the technique be-
comes unprofitable and therefore obsolete (without price increases).
Under public sector conditions the suggestion is a feasible one.
Whether it is the socially optimal one is another question. If the
industry is a state capitalist one i.e. operating under the same private
sector conditions that revenue 'minus cost must be positive, then it
is difficult to see how the state could do any differently from the
private entrepreneur.
If on the other hand, the state is willing to subsidise the industry,
then other criteria will have to be evolved for choosing which industry
it should subsidise.
But the most important objection to the concept of retrogressive
innovation is that it denies the very purpose of modern technology.
This is of course a dangerous statement to make in so far as imputing
ideas like "purpose" to human activity brings down on one's head
that esoteric field, the philosophy of value systems. But it is a paradox,
and since all paradoxes are delusions, a delusion that one set of
human beings should be allocating their resources to the relieving of
mankind of the drudgery of production, while another set of human
beings should be seeking deliberately to increase such drudgery. The
question is probably tied up with the problem of redistribution of the
world's income and employment, an area of discussion only now com-
ing to the fore in modern economic thinking.
The third category of industries must be divided further into:
(a) Primary resource extraction and processing,
(b) Semi-manufactures and manufactures for export.

3 (a) Primary Resource Industries
This set c-f industries gives a good illustration of the way the
open economy model deals with a raw material resource which happens
to be a basic input to the technologies of the developed economies of
the world. The 'modus operandi is obvious and is of course a regional
political cliche. The raw material is extracted and processed only to
that stage which would reduce the cost of transport to the developed
economy without increasing the final cost of production under the
private sector accounting framework.
There are important exceptions to this general rule. They are:
(1) the huge oil refining capacity of Trinidad and Tobago,
(ii) the Broko Pondo Aluminium smelter in Surinam.5

The plant now being installed in Cuba to produce iron, steel, nickel,
and cobalt from Cuban ores6 is a closed economy phenomenon which
is outside the scope of this paper.

The aluminium smelter can be explained in the open economy
model because of the large reduction in weight which reduces trans-
port costs (provided, of course, that it does not generate idle company
owned capacity) The oil refining capacity of Trinidad cannot be ex-
plained in such terms and, in fact the author can find no techno-
logo-economic justification for any capacity more than is required for
local consumption, using this model. There may be justification if it
can be proved that the wage content of the cost of production is large
enough for the differential between metropolitan wage rates and
Trinidad's to offset the higher capital costs.7
Although these industries in the islands where they exist are
extremely important to their economies in the wider sense, their
capital intensities are such that they have a much smaller employ-
ment effect. For example, in Trinidad and Tobago where the petroleum
industry dominates the economy, the whole mining and refining sector
employs only 12% of the non-agricultural labour force. 8

Since the production technology of this set of industries is pre-
determined and since its capital equipment is largely produced out-
side the region, it does not loom large in our considerations.

What may be possible under certain conditions, is the further
processing of these resources to a stage where they can be an input
to an industry which can then become valid for an island with a com-
plementary resource.
For two reasons I am pessimistic about this possibility:
(1) The resources in each island are isolated from the comple-
mentary resources in the other islands. E.g., Jamaica has
bauxite but no cheap sources of energy, Trinidad has energy
sources but no significant raw materials, Cuba has iron, nickel,
and cobalt ores but no cheap energy sources, Guyana has
manganese but no iron ore, etc.
(2) The peculiar way the open economy model works in the region,
i.e., each island maintains an open economy vis-a-vis its
former or neo imperial power, while discriminating against
the other islands which are not in the same imperial group.

3 (b) Manufacture for Export Industries
These industries are perhaps the most important set in our dis-
cussion in the sense that the restricting variables are to a large
extent political rather than technologo-economic. If the United States,
for example, were to cede to the archipelago the production of all
those industries which the open economy model has found valid for
the region (instead of imposing tariff and quota restrictions), then
not only will the surplus labour problem disappear, but the ambi-
valent attitudes to modern technology, productivity and efficiency will
disappear as well. This solution is not of course being advocated for
reasons which will become clear as we proceed.

The fundamental point to note about this set of industries which
is considered suitable for the region under open economy conditions is
that their capital/labour ratios are fixed and must have remained con-
stant for several years. This can be inferred from the fact that even
though they were existing in economies in which labour costs were
increasing substantially, they were unable to mechanise and so were
forced to move to an economy with cheaper labour.
The important implication from this analysis is that not only are
these industries suffering from a lower than average labour pro-
ductivity, but more importantly, if the price of labour in the new
economy changes significantly, they will be unable to substitute capital
for labour and so will have to move on once again.
The garment industry is an excellent illustration of this problem.
The ratio of one operative per sewing machine has remained constant
ever since factory production of garments started. As wages rise there-
fore, the entrepreneur cannot react in the normal way by mechanising
to raise labour productivity because there is no existing technology
with which to do so. Three solutions have to be adopted. Either firstly,
he can add the wage increases to his prices and seek political pro-
tection from competition from economies with lower wage rates (as
has been done in North America and Western Europe), or secondly
he can physically transfer his establishment to an enclave economy
with cheaper labour which has access to his home market (i.e., which
has an open economy vis-a-vis his country of origin), or thirdly, he
can import labour from an economy with lower wage rates in the
hope that only a small increase over those wages would be enough
to satisfy this kind of migrant.
The second solution is the one with which we are concerned in
this paper in two senses. The first sense is that the region is attempt-
ing to attract this kind of industry. The second sense is that as
incomes rise in the course of this very attraction, these industries will
have to move once again to another enclave economy with lower wage
The discussion has highlighted the essentially transitory nature
of this type of industry. 9 This did not deter Professor A. Lewis10
writing in 1950 who consoled himself with the thought "If one is seek-
ing work desperately, a temporary job is better than no job, and this
is especially so if the temporary job enables one to acquire new skills
and experience which improves one's capacity to do other jobs". When
one is talking about primitive societies where the mere introduction
of factory production is a major innovation in terms of the industrial
discipline it introduces, this argument is perfectly valid. But where
the discipline already exists, as it does in most of the region, there is
a heavy social cost involved in the retraining of redundant workers
from one specialised skill for another specialised skill.
Further, not only is the production technology of this class of
industry specified to the point of routine, but, more importantly, there
exists no economic motivation for any research to be carried out in

the region, to increase the productivity of this type of industry. The
two main reasons are:
(1) Such mechanisation will tend to bring labour productivity and
hence wage rates up to the metropolitan level; the entre-
preneur will then be indifferent to local production and trans-
port costs to the market will eventually swing the decision
back to metropolitan production.
(2) The machines for the mechanisation are likely to be produced
more cheaply in the metropolitan economy and thus will be
of little direct benefit to the local economy.

Electronic Data Processing (e.d.p.) in the Open Economy Framework
Because we hold that the most significant technological innova-
tion facing the economies of the region is the advent of the modern
electronic computer, a special section of the paper is devoted to it.
Here the concern will be only with the technological and economic
effects on production, defined in its widest sense.
The first point to understand about e.d.p. is that it is not a
highly capital-intensive innovation. In fact, the computer industry in
the Western countries has organised itself more to rent than to sell
its machines. As such, therefore, computerisation appears as an
operating rather than as a capital cost in the present accounting
framework. To add some concreteness to our ideas, we will give some
rough numerics. For about T & T $1,800 per month, an e.d.p. system
the size of the I.B.M. 140 or I.C.T. 1500 can be hired to release any-
thing from 20 to 100 clerical staff, depending on the prevailing level of
clerical productivity. Even for small companies which cannot utilise
fully even the smallest available machine, the centralised computing
centre which hires out its time on an ad hoc basis has already been
It is not too difficult to see therefore that under the open economy
framework, electronic data processing is a valid technological inno-
vation for the region.
Labour productivity is, of course, not the only grounds for com-
puterisation but our paper restricts us to this consideration.

Some General Conclusions
Our considerations have demonstrated some of the limitations of
the open economy framework .for the achievement of full employ-
ment. These limitations operate not only on existing industries but
also on the range of potential industries which can be considered
valid for the region. The introduction of electronic data processing
into the island-economies, which is envisaged to be one of the next
stages of technological change in the region will cause even further
dislocations in the lives of these communities.
The problem is so fundamental an attribute of the open economy
that we envisage a breakdown of this model in the archipelago. In
fact it has already broken down in Cuba, the largest island.

So far the discussion has been pessimistic. In the next part of
the paper, an attempt is made to subvert some of this pessimism by
examining the possibilities that the same technology we have describ-
ed so awesomely, can create for the 22 million people who for one
reason or another have made this archipelago their home.


In this section of the paper the discussion centres on the con-
tribution that modern economic planning techniques, together with
the supporting computational and communicational technology, can
make to the new problems which an economcially integrated archi-
pelago will create. It is not intended to give arguments for this
essentially political solution. Neither will any attempt be made to
investigate what the new economy would be like. Our concern shall
be with the technical problems raised by planning in the new en-
vironment. In places the arguments will appear to be idealist to the
point of naivete, but this is a function of the political atmosphere
in the region, rather than its prevailing technology.
Before the planning problem proper is brought into focus, some
brief points must be made on the problem of data collection and
collation from such a widely dispersed region. Firstly, modern elec-
tronic data processing enables information to be stored in compact
form capable of being transported cheaply by air. Already, e.d.p.
systems are being introduced into the national statistical units in the
region. The Trinidad and Tobago Central Statistical Office, for ex-
ample, has an I.C.T. 1500 unit which is at present used for process-
ing the East Caribbean 1960 Census data in exactly the way we
envisage the more general system will operate.
Direct interpersonal communication is easily achieved with the
prevailing air transport technology which is capable of traversing the
extreme points of the region in less than two hours were it not
utilised to take the tourists island-hopping. In fact, the modern
medium and short haul jet aircraft, by replacing the motor car as a
more efficient form of transport even -for journeys of less than 100
miles, has completely nullified the "island" effect in the region.
Kingston/Port-of-Spain trips are no different from New York/Wash-
ington trips to the modern traveller.
Our discussion on planning starts with some definitions. By an
internationally integrated planned economy is meant an economy
formed by the political unification of two or more nation states which
deliberately set out to programme their economic development through
the use of social criteria for their resource allocation in space and
Social criteria can be defined most meaningfully through the
mathematical concept of the set of shadow factor prices obtained from
the dual of a linear (or non-linear) programming frame work applied
to a national economy. l (nation in this sense would be the new

political unit made up of what was formerly two or more nation states).
This concept is used because it yields a set of prices for the 'economic
resources, which easily differentiates the new system by a comparison
of those with the set of prices evolving from the play of the market.
For example, the socially optimal price of Jamaican bauxite as an
input to another island's smelting plant would differ significantly
from the price now paid by the United States, and which would pos-
sibly make aluminium smelting feasible in the region (it seems to
be already feasible internally for Suriname) Similarly the prices of
capital (or the interest rates if you wish) for the different industries
will vary according to the socially optimal levels of mechanisation,
which in turn will differ from those under the pure private sector
conditions described earlier.
It is obvious from the method of definition, that we are advocating
the use of mathematical methods in the planning of the new economy.
The advent of the modern electronic computer in its role as a systems
simulator, has broken through the experimental barrier in economics.
Economists have always been frustrated by the fact that although
their field was a scientific one in so far as they were concerned with
concepts which can be defined and measured, they were unable to
imitate the natural scientist in his ability (a) to control the environ-
ment in which his variables operate, and (b) to change systematical-
ly their values in order to establish their functional inter-rela-
The electronic computer has solved part of this problem in so far
as it provides a perfect controlled environment for our economic
variables. The major difference with the natural scientist's approach
would be that our economist would specify the functional relationships
at the beginning instead of discovering them at the end. But
then one branch of natural science, particle physics, has already
adopted this approach. The mathematical model is built and simulated
in a computer and the results are then checked with the empirical
reality for verification of the model.
The most important innovation which centralised planning of
this type will bring is the possibility of the analysis of the interde-
pendence of industries not only in terms of the inter-sectoral trans-
actions but more importantly in terms of the industry mix which will
give full utilsation to the region's factor endowments.
To illustrate the point, a comparison can be made of the two
sets of industry which are found valid by the two criteria-the Lewis
one and the centralised planning mechanism. Lewis' criterian chooses
industries starting from the upper end of the total set of industries
ordered according to labour intensities. As size of market, transport
costs, etc. rule out industries, one moves down the set until one reaches
full employment. Quite apart from the problem of the changing price
of labour, this criterion will pick up the industries with the most stag-
nant technologies (as we have shown) with the lowest labour pro-
ductivities and thus with the worst implications for growth or the
achievement of the full employment target.

The centralised planning mechanism on the other hand will set
itself 'multiple targets-growth rates (both regional and islandic),
employment, multiplier effects, income levels in particular locations,
etc. With all of these now political assumptions as constraints, the
industry mix which satisfies them all can be chosen. The Lewis
criterion is generalised beyond recognition.
To temper our idealism, we must point out that there are many
difficult mathematical and economic problems still to be solved
before mathematical programming techniques can be introduced to
economic planning in routine fashion. Most of these have been dis-
cussed elsewhere 12 but there is one which is so rarely dealt with that
it should be brought up here.
The problem is the time variable. Before any planning technique
can be applied, the economic horizon must be specified. This is usually
achieved by arbitrarily asserting a time period-5 years seems to be the
most popular one following the first innovator in the field, Joe Stalin.
When one is using the highly aggregated growth models of the Harrod-
Domar-Mahalanobis type, this is no problem. But when one attempts
to use the highly disaggregated sectoral models which are capable of
being handled in an electronic computer, the sequencing of the sectoral
growths for interdependence is vital.
To illustrate what is meant, the concept of a vector state is in-
troduced. An economy can be described at a single point in time as
being in a state which can be a vector of the numerical values of the
outputs at that point. The target state at the end of the arbitrary
planning period is another vector of the outputs at that point in
time. Now if one looks only at that five year period, one can optimism
the growth path from the initial state to the end state. But without
looking at the future time periods, one cannot say the end state of
the first five years is the best position to be in if one wants to opti-
mise over the next five years and so on. It is -obvious therefore that
planning at this level is a sequential decision process with what is
effectively an infinite economic horizon. As such what is involved is a
field of modern mathematics called "dynamic programming" by its
creator, Richard Bellman. 13 Very little research has been done on
the application of this field to national economic planning. 14
We now move from the regional level to the highly disaggregated
levels where we can consider the problems of allocation in space. This
area of planning will be of vital importance in the beginning of the
integration era, when politicians and their supporters will normally be
suffering from "time-lags", i.e., they will still be thinking in national
terms. Questions as to which island should get the steel factory, the
aluminium smelter, etc. will continue to be asked, as they should be.
The job of planning for allocation in space will constitute the
formulation of several alternative policies and the evaluation of these
policies in terms of social i.e. regional pay-offs and penalties. These
alternatives and their implications will provide the decision-makers
with a full information situation when they bring the social values
into the final decision.

To exemplify, we have seen in Part I how reduction of transport
costs will increase the optimal size of a plant. In an economically inte-
grated region there will also be an optimal site of the plant in rela-
tion to the dispersed market. This optimal site will not be a static
concept but will be subject to theoretical shifts as investment in
intra-island transport facilities for other industries will tend to
improve transport facilities and hence lower the transport costs
It is the function of the politicians now to act as a kind of para-
metric programmer. That is, after the technicians will have worked
out their optimal site, the politicians should ask "If we change this
parameter in the model, will your optimal site shift to my island?". It
is the duty of the technician in this situation to evaluate the various
effects on employment, incomes, etc. of this parameter change and
supply this information back to the decision-makers.
This procedure is what the profession of Operations Research does
for the managers of the private and public sectors of the developed
capitalist economies. All that is suggested is that the same technique
can be applied to the allocation cf resources at the regional level,
with the society, instead of the market, deciding the values of the
parameters of the system.
It is important to realise that planning, by itself, is not an inno-
vatory process. By this is meant that the alternatives of the feasible
policy space have to be specified by other means and the planner will
choose from them. If a superior alternative has been left out of the
policy space, then the most the planner can do is indicate the limit-
ations of the best alternative of the one he was given. This can lead
possibly to a search for superior alternatives which were extraneous
to the model and as such this search can be innovatory.
In conclusion we would like to mention that although we have
only discussed "active" planning, we do not dismiss the passive inter-
national planning that the "Free Trade Area" concept envisages. We
feel this concept to be an important contribution to the debate. But
we hold that it can only be a stage on the way to a positive approach
to a rational allocation of resources in the region.



Gordon K. Lewis "Puerto Rico, Freedom and Power in the Caribbean", London, Merlin
Press, 1964, p. 230.
2. W. Arthur Lewis "The Industrialisation of Puerto Rico", Caribbean Economic Review,
Vol. 1, Nos. 1 &2, December 1949, p. 162 et seq. The exception to this general rule would
be the case where the capitalist is a local president.
3. See (a) for Puerto Rico, "Economic and Industrial Planning", a paper by Miguel
Echenique at the Seminar on "Planning for Economic Development in the Carib-
bean" sponsored by the Caribbean Organisation in January, 1963, in Puerto Rico.
See (b) for Jamaica, Government of Jamaica "Five Year Independence Plan, 1963-1968",

See Ic) for Tri idad and Tobago, "Draft Second Five Year Plan, 1964-1968" Government

4. W. Arthur Lewis "The Industrialisation of the West Indies", Caribbean Economic Review,
Viol. II, No. 1, May 1950, Section II "Which Industries?"

5. H. D. Huggi "Aluminium in Changing Communiti Andre Deutsch, 1965, p. 49.

6. Dudley Seers (Ed.) "Cuba, the Economic and Soci Revolution", Univensity of North
Carolina Press, 1964, p. 334.

Alister Mclntyre has pointed out to me that a possible explanation exists in terms .of
the parallel open economies of the United States of Amercia cnd the British Common-
wealth which discriminate against each other through tariffs, quotas, etc. See his
paper "Some Issues of Trade Policy in the West Indies", New World Quarterly,
Croptime, 1966.

8. Percentage calculated from figures given in the "Draft Second Five-Year Plan, 1964-68,
op. cit. p. 150.

9. Puerto Rico has lost 40,000 jobs in the garment industry in the decade through
operation of the mechanism. See Echenique op. cit. p. 56.

The study of development programming using linear programming metlicds has been
carried furthest by the work of H. B. Chenery. See especially "Comparctive Advantage
and Development Policy", American Economic Review, March, 1961.

12. Corfman, Samuelson and Solow, Programming and Economi Analysis", McGra'
Hill, 1958.

13. R. Bellman "Dynamic Programming", Princeton Universily Press, 1957.

14. Some work on this is being done at the University of California, Berkeley; at the Centre
for Research in Management Science. See "An Algorithm for Dynamic Programming of
Economic Growth", a paper by H. Radner and S. Friedman presented at a joint meeting
of the Institute for Management Science and the Operations Pesearch Society of America,
Minneapolis, 8th October, 1964.

The Civil Service Strike In British

Honduras: A Case Study Of Politics

And The Civil Service

ON 30TH JUNE, 1966 the British Honduras Public Officers' Union
achieved the doubtful distinction of staging the first civil service
strike in the country. The immediate occasion for the strike, the
POU claimed, was the gloomy report of the leader of the Opposition,
Mr. Philip Goldson, on the London Conference in early June between
the United Kingdom and British Honduras Governments.1 The con-
ference reportedly discussed the proposals of the U.S. mediator, Ambas-
sador Bethuel Webster, in the longstanding Anglo-Guatemala dis-
pute. According to Mr. Goldson the effect of the proposals is to
make British Honduras de facto, if not de jure, an integral part of
Guatemala. The British Honduras delegates were neither permitted
to take away the documents nor to take notes at the conference, and
both the United Kingdom and British Honduras Governments in
denying Mr. Goldson's report claimed that his memory played him
false. The United Kingdom Government declined to comment further
on Mr. Webster's ideas as they are still confidential, but has given
the assurance that no decision on the country's future will be taken
without the consent of British Hondurans.

It is however evident that the POU gave credence to Mr. Goldson's
report since in stating the immediate reason for the strike it claimed
that "Public Officers as citizens had come to feel that their country
was being lost to them and had been unable to secure adequate re-
assurances" 2 The POU did not rest its case here. As a further justifi-
cation for the strike, it recalled long-standing grievances against the
Government and the fear that political patronage is becoming the
main determining factor of advance in the civil service. The Union,
a few years earlier, "had felt obliged to express fears that the Public
Service Commission were relaxing their vigilance and permitting a
number of irregularities in appointments and promotions to receive
their sanction." 3
It is clear from the grounds on which the POU justified its action
that the strike was inspired not by an industrial dispute but by
political considerations. The strike was not altogether surprising. It
climaxed the strained relationship between the People's United Party

1. The Belize Billboard, June 19, 1966. p. 1.
2. POU'S resume cf a meelinn held between the Governor and the POU on July 28, 1962.
3. The British Honduras Civil Service Association: Report of 40th Annual General Meeting 1962.
p. 17.

government and the POU which had developed during the past five
years. It is even open to doubt whether a rapport between the Gov-
ernment and the Union ever existed. The strained relationship
between the civil service and the Government was in a large part
due to differences in attitudes. The civil servants, at least those in
the administrative and executive grades, are middle class in origin
or aspirations. The People's United Party, on the other hand, receives
most of its support .from the lower class and tended in its formative
years to articulate lower class hostility towards the middle class. The
party's attitude inspired the civil servants to have little confidence in
the Government. Indeed, in 1962 the chairman of the POU in his
report on 'Politics and the Civil Service' was "convinced that a crisis
was fast approaching"4 and another speaker in urging members to
unite stated, "As far as the Government of the day is concerned you
are on your own."5 The union also rarely concealed its feeling of mis-
trust in its weekly newsletter which commented freely on political
issues that bore little relevance to civil service matters.

The Government in turn indicated that this feeling was mutual.
Perhaps more important than the feeling itself were the occasion and
manner in which it was expressed. Public political meetings were often
chosen as the opportune moment and the speakers seldom couched
their views in discreet language. This merely added to the discomfort
cf the civil servants. If confirmation of the strained relationships
was needed, it was provided in the spirited reply of the POU Chair-
man at the Union's annual conference in 1964 to the address on 'The
role of Government and the Public Service' delivered by the guest
speaker, the Minister of Labour.

At times the tension tended to develop into a crisis as for ex-
ample when the POU delegate (the administrative secretary) was
debarred from attending a Government-sponsored Trade Union Sem-
inar in 1964. The Union had received an invitation to the seminar
from the Department of Labour and had actually participated in the
drafting of the programme. A rival trade union, the Christian Workers
Union, objected to the POU delegate's attendance at the seminar on
the ground that the POU was an elite, and not a genuine working
class union, although it represented several categories of industrial
workers. The Minister of Labour in obvious deference to the objec-
tions of the Christian Workers Union, withdrew the invitation to the
POU, but this did not prevent the POU delegate from attending the
opening session from which the Christian Workers Union walked out.
A further ministerial request for the delegate's non-attendance was
of no avail, and Police intervention was necessary to bring to an end
the delegate's disregard of the Minister's instruction. The remaining
sessions were attended solely by the Christian Workers Union; the
third participating union, the General Workers Development Union,
having boycotted the sessions in sympathy with the POU.

4. Ibid, p. 15.
5. Ibid, p. 4.

The main significance of the strained relationship was its re-
flection on the political and cultural cleavages in the society and it is
these which we should discuss for a deeper insight into the causes
of the strike which were more complex than the stated reasons of
the POU suggest.

The Cultural and Political Factors

British Honduras can be analytically if not emperically separated
into two broad cultural categories. There is the Creole complex whose
culture is historically rooted in the colonial system in which English
values predominate. They have a generous admixture of Negro blood
but the African element of their culture has been devalued and the
ideal forms of institutional life such as government, law, religion and
education are of European derivation. The Creoles are concentrated
in Belize City which is the administrative capital and the repository
of the dominant English culture.

It is largely from this element of the population that the civil
servants are drawn. Possessing a long tradition of education, the
Creoles not only dominate the bureaucracy but also the other elite
functions in law and education; and also provide managerial and
technical personnel to industry and commerce. The elite group of
creoles has played an important role in the social life of the country,
and being familiar with British political institutions, essayed in
former years to speak and act for the entire society.

The orientation of the Creole complex is in contradistinction to
that of the Maya and Kekchi Indians and the Mestiz:s who are pre-
dominantly rural dwellers and whose pattern of life approximates to
that described for parts of Guatemala and Mexico. These ethnic groups
were politically marginal to the society in the period of crown colony
rule and living in the rural areas lacked the educational opportuni-
ties of the urban Creole. Committed to a traditional way of life, they
also .felt little necessity for an education. In consequence relatively
few of the Mayas and Kekchi Indians in proportion to their population
are qualified to enter the professions and the civil service. Moreover,
the more enterprising have shown a preference for commerce. Irres-
pective of their achievements, they have maintained their contact,
facilitated by easy physical connections, with Guatemala and Mexico.
Indeed, the cultural affinity, the widespread use of Spanish by this
element, and the actual physical contact have had a strong pull to-
wards closer relations with their Central American neighbours.

One of the questions which the process of decolonialisation has
raised is the future orientation of the territory to outside political
entities. This orientation is at present multiple. The country's geo-
graphical position and cultural heterogeneity has made its relation-
ship with its Central American neighbours as important as that with
the United Kingdom, the United States and the Commonwealth

Caribbean. But because of its colonial history and traditional com-
mercial links with the United States, its relationship with the latter
countries are stronger.

The Creoles steeped in British tradition and having a correspond-
ingly weak commitment to the Mestizo culture advocate closer rela-
tions with the English-speaking territories. This view is articulated
by the Civic Committtee6 whose membership is drawn almost en-
tirely from among the Creoles and to a lesser extent by the opposition
National Independence Party whose leader, Mr. Goldson, is explicitly
creole in culture and orientation.

Mr. George Price, the Premier, on the other hand, has always
envisaged a Central American destiny for the country and is opposed
to any form of political association with the West Indian territories.
He has focused attention on the former Mayan civilization, insisted
that the country be called Belize which name, he states, is of Mayan
origin, and has adopted as the national and his party flag a blue and
white banner which he proclaims 'flew many years ago near the Court
House in Belize' These suggest that he supports the idea that the
identity of the country is rooted in a Mayan ancestry and that this
gives the country autochthonous claim to sovereignty. He has con-
ducted a very effective campaign on behalf of the People's United
Party among the strongly Catholic, Spanish-speaking peasantry in
the rural areas and it is from this element of the population that he
receives most of his electoral support. His stand in the Anglo-Guate-
mala dispute in the 1950's was not always clear and unequivocal and
he was expelled from the Executive Council in 1957 for consorting
with the Guatemalan Ambassador in London during an official mission
to the British Government. In recent years he has repeated his In-
tention to seek independence within the Commonwealth but the
opposition appears suspicious of his intentions and tends to view
his insistent claims that the identity of the country is rooted in the
ancestry of the Mayans not as a search .for a national identity but
as a preparatory step towards some form of political association with
Guatemala and an attempt to place the Mestizo element in a favour-
ed position.
The differing orientations of the two main cultural groups have
also been fostered by religion, the political importance of which lies
mainly in the tendency for denominational adherence to follow
closely along the lines of racial cleavage and the urban-rural
dichotomy. Generally speaking, the Mayas, Mestizos and Caribs who
are predominantly rural dwellers are Catholics while the Creoles
provide almost the entire membership of the Protestant denomina-
tions. The Catholic Church has earned the reputation of being anti-
British and anti-colonial, which has been partly attributed to most
of its clerics being of Irish or German descent. Another contributory
factor is that the Church draws its priests, policies, and funds mainly
from the United States which, in the heyday of British colonialism,

6 The full name of the Committee is Citizens Integrated to Voice Interest of Country.

had strong reservations against colonial rule. The antipathy towards
the British cannot be overlooked if only because the Catholic Church
has always evinced, however guardedly, an interest in the country's
political affairs. To compound the issue, the Premier's earlier voca-
tion was for the priesthood and this was tested in the United States
and Guatemala. He has retained a simple way of life and is a prac-
tising Catholic. The Creole Protestants tended to identify themselves
in former years with a colonial Establishment and existing privileges
with the result, as Waddell points out,7 of Protestantism being linked
with the British connexion on the one hand, and Catholicism
to anti-colonial nationalism on the other.

To pinpoint these differing orientations is not to suggest that
there is no interaction between these two complexes, that individuals
can be neatly fitted into either category, that political alignments
rigidly follow cultural and racial cleavages, or that there are no
common values shared by these cultural groups; it is to indicate one
of the underlying causes of political conflict which arises in the
search for acceptable institutions and values during this transitional
period to statehood.
The Government's emphasis on a Central American destiny and the
appeal, support and opposition which it has engendered not only
reflects the differing orientations and conflicting loyalties of the
two main cultural groups but perhaps more important suggests that
changes in their traditional position within the society are taking
place. The suggestion must necessarily be treated with caution in the
absence of a study of the country's social structure. Nevertheless, there
is a clearly recognisable attempt to reorientate the social values of the
society by political action and an appreciation of this fact is crucial
to an understanding of the behaviour of the creole dominated civil
The possible change of the social order which closer association
with Guatemala will conceivably hasten, poses a threat to the in-
terests, values, and influential position of the Creoles who, having
believed Mr. Goldson's report, saw this threat as imminent. Con-
sideration of the political tension which Mr. Goldson's report created
was a short step towards the contemplation of one's personal position.
As the POU indicated, civil servants were acting primarily as citizens
with a vested interest in the future status of their country and merely
used the Union as their vehicle of protest. Whether their loyalty to
their civil service code of conduct ought to have taken precedence
over that as citizens is a question which has bedevilled political
philosophers since Aristotle and need not delay us. What we should
note is that once they had conceived a vested interest in the crisis
it became difficult for them to remain aloof. As Bertram Collins has
pointed out in his discussion of the Civil Service strike in Guyana.
"The civil service is a very human organisation recording like a sen-
sitive seismograph the stress and strains of the society it serves and

7. D. A. G. Waddell, British Honduras, Oxford Univ. Press, 1960. p. 71.

in which its members are also citizens when the service is local-
ised or independence comes (whichever is earlier) the civil service
cannot stand apart from the society."B

The question of whether the civil service should have expressed
its concern by way of a strike is related to the degree of its political
involvement but nevertheless can be discussed separately. Perhaps the
POU would have refrained from such extreme action had it not lost
*faith in the then departing Governor, Sir Peter Stallard. How low
was his personal stock with the Union became known when a few
months earlier a seemingly innocuous suggestion to invite the Governor
to declare open a civil service seminar for senior officers jointly sponsor-
ed by the University of the West Indies, the Government of British
Honduras and the POU was vetoed by the Union. During the crisis,
the Union claimed that in the past the Governor had failed to give the
public officers the protection to which they felt they were entitled when
subjected to public abuse from politicians and did not anticipate a
satisfactory assurance on this occasion. An unsuccessful meeting of
the two parties a few hours before the decision to strike was taken
merely underwrote the limits of the Governor's influence on the POU.
To have expected a positive assurance seemed unrealistic since the
Union having taken an active interest in the crisis had alienated the
residue of the Governor's sympathy. Moreover, from the statements of
both the United Kingdom and British Honduras Governments it was
clear that the Governor who had also attended the conference could
not support the Union's view that there was justification for grave

The POU might also have been unconsciously prompted into taking
this extreme action by the inability of any other organisation opposed
to the Government's stand on the mediation to do so effectively. It was
the only organisation with a large anti-P.U.P. element capable of
crippling the Government and indeed a small but hard core of its
militants openly envisaged a protracted strike which if not precipitating
the resignation of the Government would at least bring business and
communications throughout the country to a virtual halt. An allied
union, the British Honduras Union of Teachers, which a few months
earlier had staged a public demonstration against the unsatisfactory
salary increases was obviously incapable of causing the resignation of
the Government by a strike. Still less capable was the sole anti-P.U.P
industrial trade union, the General Workers Development Union.

Even the opposition National Independence Party, to which the
POU seems favourably disposed, did not appear capable from its
electoral performance of effecting a change of Government. Indeed,
the POU appeared to have little confidence in the ability of the Opposi-
tion to effectively represent its interest in the political sphere. The
POU was in fact experiencing a crisis of confidence. For varying
reasons it lacked confidence in the Government, the departing Governor,

8. B. A. H. Collins: The Civil Service of British Guiana in the General Strike of 1963.
Caribbeeon Quarlerly. Vol. 10 No. 2. Fune, 1964. p. 13.

its allied trade unions, and the opposition party. The logical outcome
of its own crisis was its interference, sooner or later, in the political

The Union
The POU's predisposition to political involvement was reflected in
its posture, and in this regard its name is not without significance.
Formerly known as the British Honduras Civil Service Association, the
organisation changed its name in 1962 partly to reflect more accurately
the various categories of Government employers it represented. It not
only represented the classified civil service but also quasi-Government
departments such as the Electricity and Marketing Boards and
employees of the privately owned Cable and Wireless Organisation.
Perhaps a more important reason for the change was the organisation's
dissatisfaction with the term 'Association' which suggested a self-
centred professional body. The organisation had made significant
adjustments to its thinking and was reaching beyond the confine of
routine civil service matters. It had not only identified itself with the
trade union movement but declared an interest in the wider com-
munity. In its famous Stann Creek declaration of its national goals in
1962 it pledged to "assume a front rank position in the battle against
ignorance, poverty, disease, crime and any other form of perversity
which threatens to blight the face of the nation or to impede the full
realisation of national emergence and achievement" 9 Its concern for
the wider community certainly led it into strange fields. For the
Union also conceived its obligation to the community as a guardian of
"the basic freedoms enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human
Rights and in particular, freedom of worship, of association and assem-
bly, of the place of worship, of free speech; trial by jury and by fair
judicial process; ".10 To assume the guardianship of civil liberties
was noble, but the Union could hardly have been unaware that it was
skirting on the edge of politics and that any attempt to honour this
self-assigned obligation was likely to bring it into further conflict with
the Government. There was adequate evidence in other new and
emerging states that the threat to these liberties invariably comes from
the Government.

Although the Union has a strong middle-class bias it is the most
militant and articulate union in the country. This militancy has tended
to increase commensurably with the Union's sensitivity to what it con-
siders to be a threat to its members' position. But it is at once an asset
and a drawback to the Union's membership drive. It appeals to the
clerical and executive ranks but many of the senior officers who are
otherwise sympathetic to the Union seem doubtful of its propriety. No
doubt they consider the Union's mode of thought and pose of com-
bativeness a breach of the civil service ethos and this may be partly
responsible for their withdrawal from active participation in the Union.

9. The British Honduras Public Officers Uni Report of 41st Annual General Meeting 1963
Appendix 'C'. p.27.
10. Ibid.

On the other hand the Union has accused the senior officers of in-
difference to the problems of their junior colleagues, having claimed
that "senior officers tended to sit back like fat Chinese Mandarins and
count the assets of their years of gain instead of throwing in their
weight along with the younger set." 11 Attempts "to put an end to the
withdrawal of senior officers from the Association's front line" 12 have
been unsuccessful with the result that the leadership is without a
strong tempering influence.

The Strike
Press reports of the alleged proposals had reached the country in
advance of the chief delegates' return from the conference and the
tension which it generated was kept alive by the public meeting
organised by the opposition party. The tension developed into a crisis
with the return of the leaders and the levelling of accusations by both
political parties. The crisis was marked by spasmodic acts of violence
and the threatening social breakdown was probably averted partly by
a nightly eight-hour curfew which was jointly enforced by the Police
and British Troops and also by the banning of political meetings.

On 20th June, at the height of the crisis, the Chief Broadcasting
Officer dramatically interrupted the radio programme to announce a
recorded BBC report that "in London, a Foreign Office spokesman had
described as nonsense a statement by the leader of the opposition in
British Honduras that Britain had drawn up a secret treaty with
Guatemala."13 The opposition leader immediately cabled the BBC in-
forming them that he had been misquoted in the news broadcast to which
the BBC replied that the statement had been attributed to him by the
local Reuter correspondent, and advised the opposition leader to make
his statement available. It transpired that the Chief Information
Officer was the Reuter correspondent and this had the effect of inten-
sifying anti-Government feelings. The leader of the Opposition not
only accused the correspondent of deliberate distortion of his statement
but added that "for a long time Reuters News Service has been used by
its local correspondent as a mere vehicle for pro-Government propa-
ganda." "News", he continued, "have been sent or suppressed to suit
pro-Government propaganda so that the world at large could never
get a true picture of the situation in British Honduras." 14

The incident was not forgotten at the POU emergency general
meeting which discussed the crisis. The meeting "viewed with disgust.
the conduct of the Chief Information Officer in the performance of his
duties, as epitomized in his recent deliberate attempt to mislead opinion
abroad and further confuse the minds of citizens here at home." 15
The members unanimously agreed "to demand the removal from public

11. The British Honduras Public Officers Uni Report of Ihe 43rd Annual General Meeting
1964. p. 2.
12. The British Honduras Civil Service Association. Report of 40th Annual General Meeling
1962. p. 4.
13. The Belize Times. June 21, 1966. p. 1.
14. The Belize Billboard. June 22, 1966. p. 1.
15. Ibid. June 26, 1966. p. 1.

office of the Chief Information Officer for conduct which besmirched
the integrity of the British Honduras Civil Service and the good name
of the country."16 The Chief Information Officer has since been
exonerated by a visiting Reuter representative who investigated the
charges, but neither the POU nor the opposition party has withdrawn
its statements.

Perhaps the Union regarded the occasion fitting to honour its Stann
Creek pledge to protect 'the basic freedoms enshrined in the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights' For it did not hesitate "to record its
abhorrence of the denial of radio time to groups which do not support
or agree with the ruling government party "Let the people hear all
sides," the statement exhorted, "and let them decide." 17 Finally, the
Union called on public officers "to unite now to save the country, and
pledge their fullest support to the Council of Management of this Union
in any action it may seem fit to take." 18

The statement had been prepared by the Council of Management
following the decision by a joint meeting of the Council and selected
senior officers that one should be issued. Perhaps in inviting these
senior officers the Council hoped that by participating in its delibera-
tions the senior officers would be sympathetic to its view-point, and in
any case that its bargaining position would be enhanced. It appears
the the senior officers were a moderating influence. For a suggestion
that a Union delegation should be sent to the Foreign and Common-
wealth Offices in London to demand satisfactory guarantees about the
Anglo-Guatemala mediation gave way to the more realistic suggestion
that these guarantees should be sought from the Premier. The Premier
had earlier made a parliamentary statement 19 on the London con-
ference and in his reply to the Union stated there was nothing more
he wished to add to his statement. He, however, assured the POU that
the terms and conditions of public officers would not be affected by the
mediation. In making this observation, the Premier was probably in-
dicating to the Union that it should confine its interest and concern
to professional matters.

It is not known whether strike action was discussed at the joint
meeting of the Council of Management and senior officers but rumours
of an impending strike became widespread following the release of the
Union's statement. The effect of the rumour was clear. It alerted the
Government and incensed the politicians of the ruling party. This
was obvious from the tenor of their speeches at the public meeting of
the People's United Party immediately following the release of the
statement. The entire public service was held up to public ridicule
and even the Police did not escape the criticisms of the politicians.
This attitude merely strengthened the hands of the extreme element of
the POU executive and made the rank and file members more resolute.

16. Ibid.
17. Ibid.
18. Ibid.
19. Anglo-Guatemalan Talks. Hi Slatement Premi r Georgo Price, GIS, Belize City,

A second emergency meeting of the Union was summoned and it
was clear from the mood of the members that they had come to approve
no other executive decision but to strike. Contrary to their expecta-
tion, there was little indication that the Council of Management was
clear about the action it should recommend. Its hesitancy was partly
the outcome of separate meetings which it had with the Governor and
the Union's legal adviser hours before the emergency meeting. The
Council reported that the Governor had offered to issue a statement on
the London Conference which would be prepared in consultation with
an acceptable union representative presumably in the hope that the
Council would in return refrain from any extreme and ill-advised
action. It appeared that the moderate element in the Council was at
least willing to consider the offer, but a large body of union members,
uncompromising and distrustful, warned that the Governor was
probably a modern Greek bearing his gift. They advised the Council
not to compromise its position by becoming a party to a Gubnatorial

The Council of Management also reported that the legal adviser
had counselled caution until the legal implications of a strike were
studied. There was indeed little evidence that the Council had
debated the implications of the strike and again the moderate element
seemed willing to do so now. Such issues as the possible loss of pen-
sionable service and victimisation were raised. But hopes of a moderate
decision receded when a council member in an intemperate speech, and
in what was in effect an appeal to the general body of unionists over
the heads of his executive colleagues, advocated a strike. The popular
and spontaneous response and the supporting speeches mainly from
the junior ranks of the service left the decision in no doubt. The dura-
tion of the strike was the only remaining issue to be decided, and here
moderation prevailed. The meeting decided on a sit-down strike for
forty-eight hours beginning on the following day, Thursday, 30th June
at 1 p.m. In fixing the time for the commencement of the strike the
Union was not wholly unmindful of the inconveniences its decision
would have inevitably caused the public. It hoped that the public
would avail itself of the normal facilities during the period of grace.

In insisting on a strike when the Council seemed to be wavering.
the rank and file, especially the junior officers, were not unmindful of
past experiences with their leaders. On two occasions the junior
officers had demanded a strike: the first in 1964 when the Government
refused their request for an immediate salary increase, and the second
early in 1966 when they expressed dissatisfaction with the increases
received. On both occasions the Council failed to comply with their
demands although on the second it had threatened to strike. The
junior officers had probably formed the belief that the Council would
not catch its threats by action unless forced to do so. It appears that
the junior officers had partly acquired this determination to strike
from their experiences with this and previous Councils.

The strike was too short to either test the solidarity and organisa-
tional capacity of the Union or to seriously cripple the public services;

moreso as those deemed essential remained largely unaffected. Yet
considerable concern and interest centred on the operation of certain
departments. The Post Office, not unexpectedly, attracted the most
attention. It was the Union's main stronghold. Almost the entire
staff obeyed the call and the assistance of non-strikers from other
departments was inadequate to keep the service going.

The Government, however, was not to be outdone. Certain of their
sympathy, it appealed to the Jesuits of the St. John's College who
unhesitatingly gave permission for the use of students to break the
strike. The morality of giving approval to students entrusted to their
care, without the knowledge or consent of their parents, was obviously
not apparent to the Jesuits. The recruitment of the students aroused
the hostility of the strikers and perhaps more important stimulated
public discussion of the relationship between the Government and the
Roman Catholic Church. In failing to appeal as well to the other
denominational colleges, the Government, whatever its views about
their likely response, had exposed itself to the charge of looking in
one direction for assistance. Its failure was in fact interpreted as con-
firmation of the widely held view that there is an alliance between
the Roman Catholic Church and the Government. This in turn brought
into sharp relief the conjunction of religious and political attitudes in
the society.

The political activities of the Catholic Church are particularly
objectionable to many civil servants. It has been noted that in
countries where the Catholic Church has, as it were, a co-partnership
with, and a predominant influence on the Government, in Malta for
example, the Government has tended to reserve high public offices for
Catholics. Civil servants and others claim to have detected the undue
influence of the Jesuits on governmental policies, particularly in the
field of education, and have attributed this to the religious affiliation
of the Premier and most of his colleagues and also to the learning and
activism of the Jesuits. The recall to the United States of one of the
Jesuits whose political activities were well-known has not dispelled the
widespread fear among non-Roman Catholics that the continuing aim
of the Catholic Church is to be 'the power behind the throne' and that
religious affiliation will eventually play a decisive part in public and
other appointments.

It is estimated that 70 per cent of the civil servants were on strike.
It is impossible to determine the variety of motives that influenced
individual civil servants in their decisions although some of the motives
were established from interviews. Those who remained at work in-
cluded the majority of senior civil servants Permanent Secretaries.
heads of departments, and District Officers. Irrespective of their views
about the strike they felt that they should not have abdicated their
responsibility. Some civil servants however genuinely believed the
strike justified but lacked the courage of their conviction. On the
other hand many strikers who were not in agreement with the strike
felt that they owed a loyalty to the Union. Then too, there were both
strikers and non-strikers whose decisions ha? been informed by their

respective political beliefs. There were also cases of strikers who,
having given a second thought to their action decided to resume work.
It can also be conjectured that personal motives entered many decisions.
A person, for example, with an unimpressive record may have continued
working in the hope of being restored to favour and of regaining oppor-
tunities of promotion. Similarly, it can be assumed that some strikers
who were nursing what they considered to be personal injustices saw
the occasion as their vendetta.

Implications of the Strike
The significance of the strike was far-reaching. It revealed some
of the underlying conflicts within the society, and jolted those who
smugly believed that the otherwise calm society was immuned from
social and political disturbances. The strike also called into question
the impartiality of the civil service, the limits to be placed on the
political activity of the POU, and the attitude of the Government to
civil servants.

The strike suggests that the continued impartiality of the civil
service is far from assured. It should however be noted that it is not
the strikers alone who have created this uncertainty. There is also a
number of civil servants whose partisanship to the ruling party is
destroying the concept of an impartial civil service and who may prove
to be unsympathetic to, and unwilling to zealously execute the policies
of a NIP government. It is obviously difficult to distinguish their
partisanship from loyalty and indeed these civil servants far from
being criticised are dutifully held up to the 'malcontents' by a section
of the press as a model of non-partisan proficiency. It is appreciated
that a Minister will not feel safe to be advised by a civil servant whose
loyalty is suspect and who may be a security risk, but for him to look
too kindly on a civil servant who would equally have reservations in
serving a different political master is to forfeit his claim to be pro-
moting an impartial civil service.

If an impartial civil service cannot be completely realized in
practice it nevertheless appears to be the only workable arrangement
The society lacks a sufficiently large reservoir of trained personnel
to function the spoils system or a variant of it. Even the present per-
manent civil service lacks the minimum complement of trained staff
and the deficiency persists in almost every professional field. The
acute situation becomes evident when it is observed that the Planning
Unit and the Development Programme are without the services of either
an economist or statistician. Even if there were more qualified civil
servants the permanent civil service might still be preferred. Suitable
alternative employment for trained personnel is severely limited and
under the spoils system these civil servants may be inclined to plunge
furiously into party politics creating in the process an undesirable breed
of sycophants and opportunists.

Much of the present state of affairs is due also to the absence of
a formal negotiating machinery. The Whitley Council has fallen into
disuse and the reasons for this are by no means clear. The POU claims

that the decline in the Council's activity and importance is largely the
result of the official side "issuing instructions affecting conditions of
service of Public Officers without hearing the Union's views in Whitley
Council." 20 Constitutional changes and the 'Honduranization' of the
Civil Service might also have been a contributory factor. Most of the
senior civil servants who until recently would have represented the
civil service vis a vis the Colonial Secretary are required to represent
the official side with the result that the level at which the staff is
represented has tended to decline. Further, the civil servants, like the
public which have few Inhibitions in applying directly to a minister,
have a tendency to want their consultations to be at the highest level.
The result is that the value of discussions with even the most senior
officials necessarily has less appeal than the direct access to the
Minister of Finance which portfolio the Premier also holds or his
Financial Secretary. But this method of conducting negotiations with
the highest authorities is not without its defects. The negotiations
tend to be on an ad hoc basis and their outcome too dependent upon a
few personalities. There is also no certainty that significant groups
of the Union are adequately represented. Altogether, the present
arrangement is an unsatisfactory alternative to Whitleyism and efforts
should be renewed on both sides to either resuscitate the Whitley
Council or to establish a more effective and agreed alternative.

The importance of a negotiating machinery cannot be over-
emphasised. As the recent U.N. report on the Jamaica Civil Service
has observed, "Nowadays, it is almost an article of faith that no large
organisation can genuinely flourish unless the managerial side has the
collaboration of a responsible and representative staff side, encouraged
to put forward its views with frankness and a high sense of purpose." 21
It is salutary to note also that the report in a general appraisal of the
attitude of the staff side of Whitley Councils observed that the civil
service representatives "acquire and retain a sense of responsibility in
direct proportion to the degree in which, over the years, their serious
proposals are given full and understanding consideration." 22

In so far as the negotiating machinery can contribute to the
creation of mutual confidence its establishment is not only necessary
but urgent. For the present uncertainties and lack of understanding
cannot persist indefinitely without having a detrimental effect on the
nation-building process. The role which the civil service is required to
play in this task is too vital for the effect to be otherwise.

Institute of Social and Economic Research.

20. The British Honduras Public Officers Union Report of 41st Annual General Meeting 1963,
p. 15.
21. U.N. Report on the Civil Service Jcmai Reprinted in T;-e Daily Gleaner, Friday,
December 17, 1965. p. 20.
22. Ibid.



UNDER the sponsorship of the Geography Division of the Geology
and Geography Department of the University of the West Indies,
also the Scientific Research Council of Jamaica, a three-day confer-
ence on applied climatology was held at Mona from September 20th. to
22nd. 1966. Some thirty delegates attended, from Trinidad, Puerto
Rico, Guadeloupe, Jamaica, Canada and the USA, in what is believed to
be the first attempt in the Caribbean to bring together academicians,
professional climatologists and interested laymen concerned with the
application of climatological data and research to the problems of
economic development and other facets of the emergent societies in the

The real need for a personal exchange of ideas and information,
and a chance to establish contacts and to co-ordinate research
endeavours, were the motivating .forces which encouraged the con-
ference organizers to bring their plans to fruition. It was felt too
that the conference would assist the University, various Governmental
agencies, the Scientific Research Council and overseas institutions to
be better informed on past and current climatological research in the
Caribbean area. Data collection at various levels of sophistication and
through different types of instruments, the classification and statis-
tical processing of resulting atmospheric measurements, the mapping
and analysis of data, and their application to such activities as agri-
culture, forestry, building and engineering, there and other aspects of
the science of climatology were considered appropriate topics for
review and discussion at the conference.

New Concepts in Climatology.

As in virtually every other discipline in both the natural and the
social sciences, there have been some remarkable conceptual devel-
opments in the field of climatology in recent years. While the all-
pervasive nature of atmospheric environmental conditions has been
long appreciated-the impact of the elements of weather and climate
on, for example, landforms, vegetation, soils, agricultural lani use,
house design, road and bridge construction, etc. was recorded by Greek
and Roman ob'ervers-investigations in the most recent past have
become too heavily compartmentalized into specialized disciplines.
This has tended to draw one's attention away from the essential unity

and inter-connectedness of the conditions of the natural environ-
ment. Today, environmental scientists are looking anew at the vital
connections between their specialized areas of research and there is a
"growing awareness that the sciences dealing with the physical en-
vironment are not a collection of separate and distant fields of
scientific interest, but rather a unified group of disciplines." 1

Thus in the U.S.A. the time-honoured and familiar agency of the
Weather Bureau has been replaced by a much larger and more com-
prehensive organization, the Environmental Science Services Adminis-
tration (ESSA) The desirability of, and the prospects for, such a
development for the countries of the Caribbean were also considered a
legitimate topic for discussion at the UWI Climatological Conference.

The new emphasis on environmental climatology depends increas-
ingly on a study of exchange processes. The outstanding change in
climatology during the last decade has been a shift away from such
parameters as temperature and relative humidity, and towards the
measurement of fluxes. Climatologists have become concerned with the
movements and transformation of energy in the atmospheric boundary
layer, in the plant-cover and in the soil. "It is not air temperature
that is per se significant; it is the heat exchange that occurs at the
leaf, sea, soil or skin surface. Rainfall alone is not enough; we have
to consider the evaporative losses also, again off leaf, sea, soil and
skin Once we begin to ask the question-what, effectively, is climate
as environment?-we find ourselves carried more and more deeply into
most of the territories of the various environmental disciplines." 2
Thus the science of climate is a marvellously catholic study. It is the
obvious cementing matrix for the environmental sciences.

The necessity for recognizing these new viewpoints in Anglo-
American climatology and of assessing their significance to Caribbean
environmental studies were further themes which could be traced
throughout the conference programme at Mona.

The Conference Programme.
The following papers were delivered at the conference and stimu-
lated considerable discussion both during the formal sessions and in
after-session conversations.

Dr. John Griffiths (Dept. of Oceanography and Meteorology, Texas
A. and M. University),
"General Trends in Pure and Applied Climatology."

Dr. David Smedley (Chief, Foreign Branch, Environmental Data Ser-
vice, Environmental Science Services Administration, USA),
"The Availability of Climatological Information for the
Caribbean Area."

1. John T. Connor, U.S. Secretary of Commerce (June 1965).
2. F. Kenneth Hare, "The Concept of Climate," Geography, Vol. 51 (1966), 106-107.

Dr. George Smith (Soil and Land Use Section, Regional Research
Centre, University of the West Indies, St. Augustine,
"The Estimation of Soil Moisture Status in Low Latitudes."

Mr. Alan Eyre (Geography Division, Geology and Geography Dept.,
"The Concept of Water Surplus and Water Deficit and its
usefulness in Caribbean Climatology."

(Mr. Eyre was the originator of the plan to hold a Climatological Con-
ference at Mona)

Dr. B. J. Garnier (Professor of Climatology, McGill University,
Montreal; Bellairs Research Institute of McGill University
in Barbados),
"Biological Research in the Caribbean."
(paper read by Mr. David Tout, in absence of Prof. Gamier)

Dr. J. Fougerouze (Centre de Recherches agronomiques des Antilles et
de la Guyane, Guadeloupe),
"La Bioclimatologie Agricole aux Antilles Francaises."

Mr. C. W. Hewitt (Soil Chemist, Ministry of Agriculture and Lands,
Hope, Kingston),
"The Relationship between Rainfall Variation and Agri-
cultural Production."

Dr. Robert J. Calvesbert (Commonwealth Climatologist, Puerto Rico
and U.S. Virgin Islands, Environmental Science Services
Administration, San Juan),
"The Climatology of Meteorological Drought in Puerto

Mr. D. O. Vickers (Divisional Assistant Director, Caribbean Meteoro-
logical Service, Palisadoes, Kingston),
"Very Heavy and Intense Precipitation in Jamaica."

Mr. Ole Dybbroe (United Nations Adviser on Building Research to the
Scientific Council, Jamaica),
"Design for Comfort in a Tropical Environment."

Mr. Jackson McL. Wint (Scientific Research Council, Jamaica),
"Hurricane Precautions for Tropical Building."

Mr. R. Simpson (Engineering Hydrologist, Howard Humphreys and
Sons, Jamaica),
"The Hydrological Investigation of the Yallahs River
Catchment, S.E. Jamaica."

Mr. K. C. Hall (Forests Department, Jamaica),
"Shelterbelts and Climatology."

In addition to the presentation of papers at the Trade Union
Education Centre-the venue for the Climatological Conference-an
afternoon was devoted to an excursion to the Jamaica Sugar Manu-
.facturers Association Research Laboratories at Mandeville, where con-
ference delegates met with the Assistant Director, Dr. T. Chin-Loy,
and talked with other members of the Laboratories on climatological
factors in sugar production and pest control.

It is hoped that the proceedings of the Conference, with texts of
the papers presented and summaries of the discussions which ensued,
will be published in due course by the Scientific Research Council of


It would clearly be desirable if further Environmental Science
symposia could be held in the Caribbean area, with as strong an inter-
disciplinarian emphasis as the conference sponsored at Mona. In a
"summing-up" session, it was recommended that a second gathering
of environmental scientists be called for in 1968 in the Eastern Carib-
bean, and a planning committee of four members (with powers to
co-opt) was elected to implement this recommendation:

Dr. G. Smith (Chairman)
Dr. R. Calvesbert
Mr. C. Hewitt
Mr. D. Vickers

It is also proposed that support for the second conference be solicited
from such bodies as the Institute of Applied Meteorology (Barbados);
the Institute of Caribbean Studies (Puerto Rico); the International
Society of Biometeorology; the American Meteorological Society; the
Royal Meteorological Society; the National Science Foundation (USA).

Geography Division,
Geology & Geography Dept.,
University of the West Indies.

Book Reviews

Margaret Nelson Biology and Hygiene for Caribbean Schools.
Evans Bros. Ltd., Lond. 1966. pp. 144.

ONE IS TEMPTED to say that any text-book written specially for
the Caribbean is welcome, particularly when it is a volume such as this
one in which so much effort has been made to produce a text with
which the Caribbean student will feel at home. The material selected,
the diagrams presented, the hygienic practices recommended are
almost all directly relevant to the Caribbean area and there is much
evidence of detailed knowledge of the local environment and of local
people-of their habits and way of life.

It would seem more appropriate for the title of this book to have
been Human Biology and Hygiene as nearly all the "Biology' in this
book is the Biology cf Man and the attempt to present a more balanced
volume by including sections on areas other than Human Biology has
not been altogether successful as such sections, especially those on
plant life, are by far the weakest in this book. As an adequate
knowledge of Human Biology is a pre-requisite for the learning of
hygiene, this book can be recommended as a text book in this field but
one wonders whether there could not have been a greater emphasis
on "Hygiene" to which only six of the 36 chapters are entirely devoted.
Also, a number of attempted references to good hygiene fall into the
category of "social advice" For example, it is true that "Blowing your
nose without either a handkerchief or a piece of paper with which to
catch the germs" is bad manners as well as bad hygiene, but this arid
other references to "bad manners", however creditable, would seem
out of place in a volume on Biology and Hygiene.

The value of this book as a school text is lessened by an apparent
uncertainty about the level to which it is directed. At times one is of
the impression that it is intended for beginners and at other times
that it is intended for the more advanced student-say some-one pre-
paring for the G.C.E. Ordinary level examination. However, at which-
ever level it is directed, there is a commendable effort not to clutter
the text with too many scientific names and terms, but is not this
taken too far? For example, there seems no reason why users of this
text should not be introduced to the word enzyme, or to the scientific
names of the bones of the middle ear or the names of the coats of
the eye or the constituents of the pancreatic juice. At the other end
of the scale there are some useful and interesting minute details of
information such as that there are two pulses at the wrist and not
one as is often supposed, and that urea is a salt made by the liver
from extra protein or that cats and dogs have sweat glands between
their toes only.

There is no scarcity of diagrams (or pictures as they are called
here) but while they are informative and fulfill a useful function,
yet, in general, they are not the easily reproducible text book diagrams
which elementary students expect. The transverse section of the skin
on page 59 is an example of this.
The idea of giving full experimental details at the end of the
volume for all the experiments mentioned in the text is a good one.
It is also worth noting that much care has obviously been taken to
recommend experiments for which no elaborate equipment is required.
The notes "to the teacher" should also be of great assistance to those
teachers whom it is hoped will find this volume useful.


Sheila Duncker A Visual History of The West Indies.
Evans Brothers Limited, London. 1965. pp. 56. 5/-.

EACH YEAR more books are being written about the West Indies,
books of economics, politics, sociology, history, fiction. Almost without
exception these are for students in the higher forms of secondary
schools, university students, and adults. Here is a book that is not
limited to these readers.
As the book has no preface one does not know why it was written,
nor what reader the author had in mind. A variety of readers, how-
ever, will benefit from it. It will be a boon to teachers and students
in primary schools, junior secondary schools, and the lower forms of
secondary schools, where West Indian history is now a requirement.
West Indians, visitors to our shores, and foreigners who want a brief
historical background to the events of the present-day Caribbean will
find the book lucid and readable.

The format immediately suggests that it is not the typical
condensed history. The quotation on the fly-leaf, and the many pen-
and ink sketches substantiate this first impression. An amazing
amount of information is presented within the few pages. The title
is a misnomer, as "illustrated" rather than "visual" would have been
a more accurate description.

There are thirty-three sections in the book. The first twenty-three
give a clear account of the major historical events up to 1966, beginning
with Section 1, "Arawaks and Caribs", and ending with Section 23,
"Changes in Government in the Nineteenth Century." There are three
sections devoted to the Spaniards, individual chapters to Trinidad,
Barbados, and St. Kitts, several to slavery and emancipation, and one
to Asian Immigration. Section 12 deals with the relationship of the
American Revolution to the West Indies.

There are two paragraphs at the end of Section 20, "The West
Indies After Emancipation", which are not logically placed. There is

a sudden jump forward in history to the 1930's, and then immediately
a reversion. These two paragraphs would have been better used as an
introduction to the biographies which begin three sections later.

Sections 24 to 31 are biographical. The book is the first of its kind
to include bibliographies of these particular personalities important in
the Caribbean during the last one hundred and fifty years. Only persons
from British colonies are mentioned. These are Jordan, Gordon, and
Garvey from Jamaica, Prescod and Reeves from Barbados, De Verteuil
and Cipriani from Trinidad and Marryshow from Grenada.

There are eleven maps scattered throughout the book. Accompany-
ing the first one is an excellent exercise suitable for the students
already 'mentioned. One wishes there were more exercises, as well as
projects and references in the book. A map of the West Indies inside
the front cover, and another of the world inside the back would have
made quick and easy reference possible.

The book comes to an end with Section 23, "Federation", and
Section 24, "The End of Colonialism" In these last sections Jamaica
is referred to more than any other place in the Caribbean. One
wonders if the other islands will accept the subject as adequately

As History the book is, for the most part, accurate. The errors are
mostly those of omission, hardly avoidable in a script of fifty-six pages.
Although Drake and Hawkins are given a special chapter, there is
no mention of Raleigh, also important in early times. Today historians
explain the eating of human flesh by the Caribs as a religious rite, not
as an everyday occurrence as suggested in the text. Such instances,
nevertheless, do not detract from the usefulness of the book. Through-
out it, the events, the places, the people seem real. One senses
the interrelation c.f the past with the present in the keen objective
treatment of the subject.



R. B. Davison:

Wilson Harris:

Anthony La Rose:

P. M. Sherlock:

Louis Simpson.

S. A. G. Taylor:

R. L. Watts:

Black British Immigrants to England
Published for the Institute of Race Relations
by Oxford University Press, London, 1966 35/-

The Eye of the Scarecrow
Faber & Faber, London, 1965 16/-

The Journal of Commonwealth Literature
Heinemann Educational Books Ltd. and
the University of Leeds

Foundations: a book of poems
New Beacon Publications, London 1966

Jamaica: A Junior History
Collins, London, 1966

Selected Poems
Oxford University Press, 1966

The Western Design: An Account of
Cromwell's Expedition to the Caribbean
Institute of Jamaica & Jamaica Historical
Society, Kingston, Jamaica, 1965 1


New Federations. Experiments in the
Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1966 70,