The Haitian Revolution: Toussaint L’Ouverture Marches into History The following paper looks at C.L.R. James’ text, The Black Jacobins, and explores the pivotal role played by Toussaint L’Ouverture in the successful slave uprising that yielded the state of Haiti. The ensuing pages look at how James offers an irreverent (he is uniquely in favour of the rebels) look at the rebellion and at how his work appears resolved to show the humanity of the Africans whilst also showing the inhumanity of the slave trade. Furthermore, whilst he lionizes Toussaint, he also appears to manifest a great deal of Marxist or socialist bias that asserts itself whenever the discussion turns to the “rich” and their exploitation of the less-fortunate. At the end of...The end:
..... in describing the French elite during the late eighteenth century, writes that “the rich are only defeated when running for their lives” (James, 78) – a statement which can be interpreted as a tacit approval of the brutality of the slave uprising. In the end, James provides us with a work that lovingly details the various accomplishments and actions of the slaves as they push back their imperial masters and assert control over Santo Domingo. The book tries to make a hero out of Toussaint L’Ouverture and also tries to demonize the whites who kept so many in bondage. Because it looks at things from the perspective of the natives, it is a thoroughly modern work. Works Cited James, CL.R. The Black Jacobins. New York: Vintage Books, 1962(1938).