Smuggling Across the Archipelago, "Early American Borderlands" May 13-16, 2010
*My apologies for cross-posting*
Please consider submitting a proposal for the following panel at the "Early American Borderlands" in St. Augustine, Fl, 13-16 May, 2010.
"Smuggling Across the Archipelago"
"No country in the world has coasts so well calculated for smuggling as the island of Cuba," wrote Robert Francis Jameson in his Letters From The Havana (1820). This panel takes as its focus smuggling across the channels linking Cuba, Hispaniola, and the US. As Jameson's letters suggest, Cuba was geographically pivotal to trafficking in the Caribbean, from Spanish conquest forward. While I am interested in the ways in which Spain's imperial policies produced an environment which fostered, even necessitated, smuggling, this panel also welcomes papers that understand 'smuggling' across various, often coterminous, forms: slaves, goods such as tobacco, sugar, and coffee, but also "versification", travel narratives, pirate tales, rumors, and natural histories. Smuggling in the colonies was motivated by economic survival more often than not; but as Spanish, French, and British colonies in the West Indies became increasingly aware of their collective plight in the latter half of the eighteenth-century, language and custom became equally important, ideologically powerful motivations. Finally, papers might also consider the ways in which slave insurrections and libratory rhetoric born out of the American Revolution were smuggled into and across the New World, to the epochal revolts in Saint-Domingue, returning to the early republic in creolized forms.