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Social Science Concept/Theories Used to Frame the Theoretical Arguments in the Black Jacobins

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It is clear from the discussion that the absorbing narrative adheres to rigid faithfulness to method and documentation. This is the asset of the book. You find the definitive account of Haitian Revolution 1794-1803, inspired by the events that led to the French Revolution which became the model for the Third World liberation movements in the countries of the continent of Africa and Cuba. According to James, economic and class distinctions and not the racial distinctions are important aspects of the revolution. This is his original look at the revolution, for which he has been dubbed as the Marxist by his critics.

James sees the French revolution imparting heavy influence on the Haitian revolution, and not just the dormant force providing the backdrop. “ The Black Jacobins, a historical account of the San Domingo Revolution of 1791-1803 and its interrelation with the French Revolution in 1789, is above all a narrative of liberation that documents the revolutionary potential of proletarian masses. Although James is careful to point out the racial heterogeneity of the San Domingo population--distinguishing, for example, between mulattoes, small whites, big whites, and maritime bourgeoisie--he places greater emphasis on the antagonisms of class that provided the socio-economic impetus for revolution. ” According to the research findings, it can, therefore, be said that while trying to argue the fundamentals of his theory, James adopts the materialist (Marxist) position that questions of class precede and overshadow questions of race, gender, or nation.

He writes, “ The race question is subsidiary to the class question in politics, and to think of imperialism in terms of race is disastrous. The sugar industry of San Domingo was an area of class conflict for him.

But he is quick to add, "To neglect the racial factor as merely incidental is an error only less grave than to make it fundamental. "

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