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Colonialism and Science: Saint Domingue and the Old Regime by James E. McClellan III

By James E. McClellan III

How used to be the nature of technological know-how formed through the colonial adventure? In flip, how could we make feel of ways technological know-how contributed to colonialism? Saint Domingue (now Haiti) used to be the world’s richest colony within the eighteenth century and residential to an energetic society of science—one of basically 3 on the earth, at the moment. during this deeply researched and pathbreaking research of the colony, James E. McClellan III first raised his incisive questions about the connection among technology and society that historians of the colonial adventure are nonetheless grappling with this present day. lengthy thought of infrequent, the ebook is now again in print in an English-language version, observed through a brand new foreword by means of Vertus Saint-Louis, a local of Haiti and a widely-acknowledged specialist on colonialism. often mentioned because the an important place to begin in realizing the Haitian revolution, Colonialism and technological know-how could be welcomed via scholars and students alike. “By deftly weaving jointly imperialism and technology within the tale of French colonialism, [McClellan] . . . brings to mild the background of a virtually forgotten colony.”—Journal of recent background “McClellan has produced a powerful case learn providing first-class surveys of Saint Domingue’s colonial historical past and its historical past of science.”—Isis  

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Extra resources for Colonialism and Science: Saint Domingue and the Old Regime

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These two major facets of the subject cannot be entirely separated, but they also should not be confused. It is one thing, in other words, to be concerned with the significance of science for colonialism and to inquire into the role of science in the colonial process, as in improving maps or slowing disease. It is another thing to consider the impact of the colonial experience on science and the scientific enterprise-how, for example, the global experience of colonialism affected the science of botany.

56 The surprisingly numerous publications of the Cercle des Philadelphes and of its permanent secretary, Charles Arthaud, are all available, if rare. An extraordinary amount of manuscript material concerning the Cercle des Philadelphes exists, given the fact that not a trace of the papers of the Cercle des Philadelphes remains in Haiti. 57 Moreau de Saint-Mery's collections preserve some official correspondence and a long and detailed, if at times suspect, manuscript history of the Cercle des Philadelphes by Arthaud.

For example, two hundred people drowned when the Grande Riviere of Gorge Ste. Rose flooded in 1722; the Limbe River took out the town of Limbe in 1744. 13 Engineers undertook river control and hydraulic projects not only for irrigation, as we will see, but also as a matter of public safety. Other natural disasters struck Saint Domingue. 14 The storm of MATERIAL FACTORS FIG. 1. " Drawing by Ozanne, engraved by N . Ponce in Moreau de Saint-Mery (1791). August 16, 1788, for example, damaged or destroyed over a tenth of the houses in Port-au-Prince; four large ships sank in the harbor, and sharks ate six unfortunates.

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