Commentary on Session I: Saint-Domingue on the Eve of Revolution: Politics and Economics
Bell, David, Johns Hopkins University. "Commentary on Session I: Saint-Domingue on the Eve of Revolution: Politics and Economics." The Haitian Revolution: Viewed 200 Years After, an International Scholarly Conference. John Carter Brown Library, Providence, RI. June 18, 2004.
Following are rough notes of Bell's commentary, taken by Stuart Maxwell on June 18, 2004.
Bell was responding to the following speeches:
- Apercus sur le systeme des habitations a Saint-Domingue a partir des vestiges subsistant en Haiti by de Cauna
- Colonial Absolutism: Politics in Principle and Practice in Old Regime Saint-Domingue by Geggus
- The Colony of Saint-Domingue on the Eve of Revolution by Ogle
- Haiti is complex, as revolutions are complex. I would warn against unwarranted simplification (volcano, etc). Resist Simplicity!
- Some (many?) of the reasons for the French Revolution can be translated into the origins of the revolution in Saint Domingue.
- Colonies can be laboratories, in effect, where the pure ideas of the policy makers can be given form without obstruction.