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View Diary: Criminal InJustice Kos: UK Riots in Context, Part I (129 comments)

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  •  with Britain I think it has always been more of (5+ / 0-)

    a "threat" in the colonial situation.  though they did have an anti-slavery movement.

    •  they had a very strong anti-slavery (4+ / 0-)

      movement which managed first to abolish the slave trade in 1807 and abolished slavery in 1833 freeing all slaves in the british empire. Please see my comment above; the argument was moral and they won despite the impact on the economy.

      "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

      by NY brit expat on Wed Aug 17, 2011 at 06:38:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Part of the reason was that they didn't allow (4+ / 0-)

        slavery in england for a long time (enlightenment ethic).  they just kept it abroad.  Kind of like we don't torture, we
        send it abroad.  Actually, it probably had more to do with having enough arable land that wasn't already taken, so they kept it in the colonies.  

        An interesting sidenote is that some of the American Plantation owner revolutionaries fighting for "freedom" used the fact that Britain had ended slavery in the motherland and was going to end their participation in the slave trade as a reason to justify their separation from Britain.
        Nobody's history is quite as the pure as they like to make it.

        •  what I have always found interesting (5+ / 0-)

          is that while the enlightenment was used to justify American separation from the British empire, they only partially used the arguments of Locke who had advocated both universal suffrage and abolition of slavery based on the idea of property in one's own body and that no person could be the property of another. The ideas of the enlightenment that were useful were taken on board and those that were threatening to their own property and economic position and power were jettisoned. This is the case both with the UK and France as well; the enlightenment was not that period of pretty fantasy proposed by modern reinterpretation; it was a period of revolutionary change and its ideology was used for the creation of bourgeois democratic society which we know damn well is based upon the oppression and exploitation of the majority while pretending to give them a say in their governance. I do not know why I find the recreation of history and ideology interesting, but it is a driving research motivation for me.

          "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

          by NY brit expat on Wed Aug 17, 2011 at 06:59:50 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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