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At a moment when the policy implications of racial injustice and the need for reparatory justice for Black enslavement and disenfranchisement are being intensively discussed in the United States, it is instructive to look to the Caribbean, where reparations have been at the center of foreign policy discussions with former colonizing powers for the past decade. Participants in this workshop will learn about the historical work that has documented the wealth generated by individual European enslavers and by European nations through their appropriation of the proceeds of the labor of enslaved Africans; how when slavery was abolished compensation was paid to individual enslavers for the humans they considered their "property" - but not to the formerly enslaved; and how this compensation, totaling hundreds of millions of dollars in today's money was passed on through intergenerational wealth transfer into the hands of current members of the European ruling classes. We will examine how this historical research has been embedded in Caribbean foreign policy and the types of reparations agreements that are being negotiated between European states and institutions in those states and Caribbean nations and organizations.
Barrett community members who register to attend will be provided with the CARICOM Ten Point Plan for Reparatory Justice as well as excerpts from Britain's Black Debt: Reparations for Caribbean Slavery and Native Genocide by Sir Hilary Beckles, one of the Caribbean's most important historians and a key leader of the reparations movement.