Essay – Caribbean Class



Your essay should be 4 double-spaced pages, numbered and with your name and youre A.I.s name on the first page (in case they get printed out at some point).

You have one week to work on your essay. Treat it as a take home paper rather than as an exam. Use the time you have to think about your response, and draw from course material for the content of your paper. This is not cheating; its using our courses resources to inform your response. And, as always, please feel free to ask youre A.I. or me any questions you may have as you prepare. We cannot read first drafts but we are very happy to help you express and clarify your ideas.

Be sure to site properlyno one wants to accidentally plagiarize. When including your authors statements, points, or examples, put their name and page number in parenthesis after the statement. For example, paraphrasing = Jones talked about the color of the sky (Jones, p.9); quoting = According to Jones, the sky was blue that day (Jones, p.9). It is best to keep quotations and paraphrases brief: capture the authors examples and basic ideas, but save the space for your own ideas, which are most important in your essay.

Please do not go off syllabus: do not include authors or readings not assigned in our class; do not use dictionary or other definitions; please focus solely on course materials.


The year is 1880 and the place is a ship that is carrying passengers from its two previous stops, Havana, Cuba and Georgetown, British Guiana down to Brazil. The passengers include time-expired indentured laborers, or coolies, on their way to a new life. One morning two people go up on deck to get some sea air. One is a former indentured laborer from what was then called Canton, who has just left Cuba, and the other one is from Calcutta, who has just left British Guiana. They have a conversation, comparing their lives as indentured laborers in their respective plantation societies.

Please record their conversation: what did they talk about with each other that morning? As author of this essay, you will determine who each person is and what they say and think. Their conversation can be presented as (i) dialogue (but if done entirely as a dialogue it will be harder to execute well because dialogue has to convey the broader context), or (ii) in third person narrative (he said this, she said that), or (iii) in first person narrative (I saw X, and told her/him Y, then he/she replied Z).

You must include:

the gender and names of each traveler
a thorough description of the conditions in which they lived and worked in Cuba and BG, respectively
what their criticisms are of the ways they lived and worked
what they think was beneficial about their experience; was becoming indentured worth it?
what each of them thinks are the difference and similarities between slavery and indenture. Remember that the person from British Guiana will be speaking historically and the person from Cuba will be speaking from personal observation.
What they will most want their great-grandchildren to know about their family history. (You can think about Finding Samuel Lowe here, too, although the film cannot replace any of the readings.)
You must also include a minimum of two and a maximum of four brief quotations from (1) Faruqee, (2) Look Lai, (3) Yun, and (4) Helly. You may not use more than one quotation from each author. So, if you choose to include only two quotations you will have only two authors quoted in your paper. But you will still need to have read all four authors, AND CITE YOUR SOURCES, in order to most fully and fascinatingly report on the conversation that your two characters are having on the ships deck.

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Essay – Caribbean Class was first posted on July 5, 2020 at 10:25 am.
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