In this Book

The People Trade
summary
The story of the people from the New Hebrides (Vanuatu) and the Solomon Islands who left their homes to work in the French colony of New Caledonia has long remained a missing piece of Pacific Islands history. Now Dorothy Shineberg has brought these laboreres to life by painstakingly assembling fragments from a wide variety of scattered records and documents. She tells the story of their recruitment, then sketches the workers’ lives in New Caledonia, describing the contractual arrangements, the kinds of work they did, their living conditions, how they spent their free time, the large numbers who sickened and died, and the choice at the end of the contract to remain in the colony as free workers or to return home. Throughout the book she throws light on the controversy about the recruiting of the Islanders: were they kidnapped? Or did they choose to leave home? If so, what motivated them? Evidently the Islanders’ cheap labor contributed to the development of the French colony, but how did the episode affect them and their homeland? The People Trade offers readers a revealing new picture of a long neglected side of the Pacific Islands labor trade.

Table of Contents

  1. cover
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  1. fm
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  1. Editor's Note
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  1. Contents
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  1. Illustrations
  2. pp. xiii-xvi
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. xvii-xviii
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  1. Conventions
  2. pp. xix-xx
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  1. Note on Sources
  2. pp. xxi-xxiv
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  1. Part One. Recruiting for New Caledonia
  2. pp. 1-2
  1. Chapter 1. The Pacific Island Labor Trade and New Caledonia
  2. pp. 3-10
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  1. Chapter 2. The Colony Established
  2. pp. 11-24
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  1. Chapter 3. Entrepreneurial Recruiting in the 1870s
  2. pp. 25-35
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  1. Chapter 4. The Kidnapping Inquiries and the Suspension of the Labor Trade, 1880-1882
  2. pp. 36-49
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  1. Chapter 5. Settlers Triumphant: The Labor Trade Revived
  2. pp. 50-65
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  1. Chapter 6. The New Century
  2. pp. 66-72
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  1. Part Two. Profile of Recruits
  2. pp. 73-74
  1. Chapter 7. Men and Motives
  2. pp. 75-89
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  1. Chapter 8. The Women
  2. pp. 90-115
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  1. Chapter 9. The Children
  2. pp. 116-122
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  1. Part Three. At the Workplace
  2. pp. 123-124
  1. Chapter 10. Work in New Caledonia
  2. pp. 125-145
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  1. Chapter 11. Living and Working in New Caledonia: By Law or Custom?
  2. pp. 146-165
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  1. Chapter 12. "Perpetual Theft"
  2. pp. 166-181
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  1. Chapter 13. Sickness and Death
  2. pp. 182-202
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  1. Chapter 14. "Hebrideans" in Colonial Society
  2. pp. 203-220
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  1. Chapter 15. Life after Indenture
  2. pp. 221-228
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  1. Appendix: Tables
  2. pp. 239-248
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 249-274
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  1. References
  2. pp. 275-298
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 299-309
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