New article by Jessica Roitman & Han Jordaan

‘Fighting a foregone conclusion. Local interest groups, West Indian merchants, and St. Eustatius, 1780-1810’, a new article by KITLV researcher Jessica Roitman and former KITLV researcher Han Jordaan in the TSEG/the Low Countries Journal of Social and Economic History.

After the island of St. Eustatius was sacked by the British during the Fourth Anglo Dutch War (1780-1784), there were fierce debates as to how to restore its prosperity. These debates illustrate the workings of locally-based (colonial) interest groups in the Dutch Atlantic. These local interest groups have been ignored by historians, who have fixated on whether there was a West Indian lobby similar to the one in Great Britain. This article shows that the suggestions merchants on St. Eustatius made as to how to rebuild the wealth of the once prosperous ‘emporium to the world’ were part of larger debates in the Dutch Republic about how best to govern its colonies in the rapidly changing ‘post-mercantilist’ world at the end of the eighteenth century. Read more …>>

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