Under the yoke of slavery, colonial domination, poverty, and racism, the pride and industry of a nation was born. The epitome of human capitalist greed and disregard for human life – The Transatlantic Slave Trade and the institution of slavery – laid the foundation for the creation of the Black Barbadian. Europeans perfected a system of ideological genocide; they destroyed the Self, the being, and the existence of the African and created his new being as property. It was a legalized system needed, not for the survival and welfare of European societies, but to provide a luxury for those ignorant to its origins, and amass wealth for the few, shielded a continent away from the brutality they created. The Slave Trade was designed to exploit, to profit. It was not a symbiotic and mutually beneficial working relationship; Africans, now slaves in the Americas, did not enter into a binding employment contract with paid wages and benefits. Phenotypic terrorists broke, castrated, and raped their bodies, and destroyed their existence. The institution of slavery was a calculated act of terrorism against humanity and human dignity. Seventeenth, eighteenth, and early nineteenth century Barbados and the West Indies was not the tourist paradise that it is now, but a theatre of war, where the enemy disguised itself under a cloak of lies, violence, and greed. Laws were created that allowed human beings to buy and sell other humans as the insidious ideology of race was created to justify the unjustifiable. To be of a darker skin tone meant enslavement; however, the masters perverted the binary colour stratification once the derivatives of sexual terror compelled them to enslave their own. Fathers raped mothers, and whipped daughters. Husbands emasculated, as wives raped and brutalized. Mothers cried as their sons died slow painful deaths. Welcome to Barbados. This is where the story begins.
The loyal sons and daughters of the Rock on the easternmost reaches of the Caribbean Sea fought hard and struggled to sow the seeds that created what Barbados is today. Industrious perseverance is a true Barbadian characteristic. Barbadian ancestors survived the Middle Passage; they overcame the brutality of chattel slavery; they recreated and retained their identity in the face of a well-calculated and deliberate ideological genocide; and they carved out a prosperous existence in the face of colonial domination. In the face of generations of insurmountable odds, Black Barbadians did not suffer defeat, nor did they accept the negative codification of their ideological Blackness. Black Barbadians pursued excellence and upward mobility as means to overcome the debilitating nature of poverty and the incendiary goals of racial discrimination as slaves, Free Blacks, British colonial subjects, and finally as proud and independent Barbadian citizens. Hundreds of years of subjugation forged the yeomen characteristics that defined the early twentieth century Barbadian. Whether coerced or voluntary, hard work lies at the foundation of Barbadian attitudes towards life. Tens of thousands of Barbadian emigrants have embodied this spirit of dedication to self-improvement, and subsequently the collective uplifting of the Barbadian nation-state and a prosperous Diaspora abroad. The Barbadian Emigrant Ambassadors – the autonomous Bajan – is at the heart of this study. This dissertation attempts to capture, as accurately as possible, the spirit of the nurses, the domestics, the teachers, the bus conductors, and all of the young Barbadian emigrant trailblazers. They left the sunny tropical paradise of Barbados for the cold abyss of the unknown, in search of a better life for themselves, their unborn children, and the Island.