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We Mark Your Memory: writings from the descendants of indenture

Customers based in the United States and Canada, please order from here: The abolition of slavery was the catalyst for the arrival of the first Indian indentured labourers into the sugar colonies of Mauritius (1834), Guyana (1838) and Trinidad (1845), followed some years later by the inception of the system in South Africa (1860) and Fiji (1879). By the time indenture was abolished in the British Empire (1917–20), over one million Indians had been contracted, the overwhelming majority of whom never returned to India. Today, an Indian indentured labour diaspora is to be found in Commonwealth countries including Belize, Kenya, Malaysia, Sri Lanka and the Seychelles. Indenture, whereby individuals entered, or were coerced, into an agreement to work in a colony in return for a fixed period of labour, was open to abuse from recruitment to plantation. Hidden within this little-known system of nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Indian migration under the British Empire are hitherto neglected stories of workers who were both exploited and unfree. These include indentured histories from Madeira to the Caribbean, from West Africa to the Caribbean, and from China to the Caribbean, Mauritius and South Africa. To mark the centenary of the abolition of the system in the British Empire (2017–20) this volume brings together, for the first time, new writing from across the Commonwealth. It is a unique attempt to explore, through the medium of poetry and prose, the indentured heritage of the twenty-first century.

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Table of Contents

Introduction David Dabydeen, Maria del Pilar Kaladeen and Tina K. Ramnarine Biographies The Rebel Kevin Hosein Mother Wounds Gitanjali Pyndiah Mama Liberia Angelica A. Oluoch My Father the Teacher Prithiraj R. Dullay Gandhi and the Girmitya Satendra Nandan Pepsi, Pie and Swimming Pools in-the-Sky Cynthia Kistasamy Waterloo: At Siewdass Sadhu’s Temple in the Sea Anita Sethi Talanoa with my Grandmother Noelle Nive Moa Passage from India Anirood Singh india has left us Eddie Bruce-Jones Chutney Love Gabrielle Jamela Hosein Brotherhood of the Boat: Fijians and Football in North America Akhtar Mohammed The Heist Deirdre Jonklaas Cadiramen Buckets Stella Chong Sing The Tamarind Tree: vignettes from a plantation frontier in Fiji Brij V. Lal ‘I go sen’ for you’ Fawzia Muradali Kane Paradise Island Priya N. Hein Building Walls Kama La Mackerel The Legend of Nagakanna Aneeta Sundararaj Great-grandmother, Ma Jennifer Rahim Homecoming Suzanne Bhagan Erased Athol Williams Famished Eels Mary Rokonadravu Rights of Passage Patti-Anne Ali The Protest March that Ended Indian Indentureship in St Vincent Arnold N. Thomas Sita and Jatayu Lelawattee Manoo-Rahming Memoir. Tales of the Sea: a sisterhood of the boat Gaiutra Bahadur Pot-bellied Sardar David Dabydeen

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