Found 2 article(s) for author 'Jamaica'

Sugar and slaves: Wealth, poverty, and inequality in colonial Jamaica

Sugar and slaves: Wealth, poverty, and inequality in colonial Jamaica. Jeffrey Williamson, December 6, 2018, Paper, “Jamaica was considered to be exceptionally rich in the 18th century. Modern historians have tended to perpetuate this idea. This column uses novel methods to shed new light on living standards and inequality in colonial Jamaica. While the country was one of the most expensive places on the planet at the time, this wealth rested in the hands a very small white, slave-owning elite. The rest of the populace, many in slavery, lived at the very edge of subsistence.Link

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The Social Implications of Sugar: Living Costs, Real Incomes and Inequality in Jamaica c1774

The Social Implications of Sugar: Living Costs, Real Incomes and Inequality in Jamaica c1774. Jeffery Williamson, October 2017, Paper, “This paper provides the first quantitative assessment of Jamaican standards of living and income inequality around 1774. To this purpose we compute welfare ratios for a range of occupations and build a social table. We find that the slave colony had extremely high living costs, which rose steeply during the American War of Independence, and low standards of living, particularly for its enslaved population. Our results also show that due to its extreme poverty surrounding extreme wealth Jamaica was the most unequal place in the pre-modern world. Furthermore, all of these characteristics applied to the free population alone.Link

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