; rather, they are often so intertwined that
it is difficult to disentangle them. 11
The close relationship between science and politics in
colonialMauritius appeared even more evident when planters became
interested in founding a new research institutution. As early as 1877,
the Chamber’s president, Virgile Naz, proposed that the Chamber
create an agricultural research centre. Naz was a Creole lawyer and
colonialMauritius, and that
their marginality was compounded by their relocation to Mauritius during the
decade around independence, which was a period of social, economic, and political unrest.
Malay and Arab or Swahili traders explored the south-west Indian Ocean (see
Map 1) over a thousand years ago. However, many of the smaller islands of the
Indian Ocean – including Mauritius and Rodrigues, the Chagos Archipelago,
Réunion, and the Seychelles islands – were unpopulated prior to European
colonial expansion in the region from the end of the
The history and sociology of science has not been well developed in southern Africa as compared to India, Australia or Latin America. This book deals with case studies drawn from South Africa, Zimbabwe (formerly Rhodesia), Mozambique and Mauritius, and examines the relationship between scientific claims and practices, and the exercise of colonial power. European intellectuals saw in Africa images of their own prehistory and societal development. The book reveals the work of the Swiss naturalist and anthropologist Henri Junod. The relative status of Franco-Mauritian, Creoles and Indo-Mauritian peasants was an important factor in gaining knowledge of and access to canes. After the Boer War, science was one of the regenerating forces, and the British Association found it appropriate to hold its 1905 meetings in the Southern African subcontinent. White farmers in the Cape Colony in the late nineteenth century often greeted with suspicion the enumeration of livestock and crop. The book focuses on the connections between the apartheid state's capacity to count and to control. Apartheid statecraft included aspirations of totalising modes of racialised knowledge. Included in the theme of state rationality and techniques of domination is the specialized use of dogs by police in apprehending black alleged criminals. The book discusses the Race Welfare Society, which turned to eugenics for a blueprint on how to cultivate a healthy and productive white population. However, George Gale and Sidney and Emily Kark advocated socialised medicine, and had a genuine desire to promote the broad health needs of Africans.
Wilberforce stated that it was, perhaps, ‘the least objectionable’ answer to what
to do with contraband slaves. Thomas Clarkson later wrote that this apprenticeship was a sort of internship for freedom, with Africans ‘fitted … for making
good use of their liberty’. Indeed, as Rupprecht shows in Chapter 4, it was only
when the abolitionists became concerned that these Africans were being sold into
slavery that government enquiries into their plight began.9 The archives of British
colonialMauritius show that these kidnapped Africans were routinely
Chagos islanders and their descendants in exile.
The book explores Chagossians’ recollections of forced displacement, their re
formulations of the homeland, their challenging lives in exile, their experiences
of onward migration, and their attempts to make home in successive locations.
From Chagos to Mauritius to Crawley
The Chagos Archipelago was unpopulated prior to European colonial expansion
in the Indian Ocean from the late eighteenth century onwards, whereupon it was
administered as a dependency of colonialMauritius. French and British colonialists populated
‘Eyewash’, ‘storm in a teacup’ or promise of a new future for Mauritians?
Rainbow: Mauritian Society in the Making (Port Louis, CRIOS, 1998); M. Carter,
‘The family under indenture: a Mauritian case study’, Journal of Mauritian Studies, 4:1
(1992), 1–19; M. Carter, Voices from Indenture: Experiences of Indian Migrants in the
British Empire (Leicester, 1997); Richard B. Allen, Slaves, Freedmen and Indentured
Labourers in ColonialMauritius (Cambridge, 1999).
7 Megan Vaughan, Creating the Creole Island: Slavery in Eighteenth-Century Mauritius
(Durham, NC, 2005); Karl Noel, L’esclavage à l’ile de France (Paris, 1991).
8 See Laurent Sermet, Université
Mobilisation in exile
In the previous chapter, I described how the Chagos islands and the Chagos
islanders were already marginal within colonialMauritius, and showed that
the socio-economic, political, and ethnic tensions in mainland Mauritius in the
1960s and 1970s negatively affected the Chagos islanders’ experiences of relocation. In this chapter I show how Chagossians have responded to their chronic
marginalisation and impoverishment in exile through mobilisation in the form
of struggles led first by Chagossian women in Mauritius and later by Chagossian
: 69–78; Miles 1999: 220). Nowadays sega is officially recognised
auritius, Seychelles and Réunion alike as a national music form and is
frequently performed not only in homes but also by professional sega troupes
at hotels, parties, weddings, national celebrations, and Creole festivals (see
As on other islands in colonialMauritius, sega was popular on the Chagos
Archipelago, where it was similarly a matter of concern to European commentators: the Roman Catholic priest Roger Dussercle, who visited Chagos in 1933–34,
associated sega parties with
relatively common category as a result of the flows of people amongst all of the
dependencies of colonialMauritius.
Strategies for onward migration to the UK
Ongoing campaigns for amendments to the British Overseas Territories Act
aside, at present the effect of these features – the ineligibility of grandchildren and
subsequent generations, the 1969 cut-off date, and the privileging of marriage – is
that all extended Chagossian families thus comprise some individuals eligible for
UK citizenship and others ineligible for UK citizenship. Eligibility for UK citizenship
, The Politics of Labour ; Curtin, “British sugar duties”, pp. 161–162.
16 Curtin, “British sugar duties”, pp. 161–162; Bolland, The Politics of Labour , pp. 107–108; J. P. Greene, “Society and economy in the British Caribbean during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries”, The American Historical Review 79 (1974), 1499–1517.
17 P. Chalmin, Tate and Lyle: The Making of a Sugar Giant, 1859–1989 (London: Routledge, 1990), p. 1; W. Kelleher Storey, Science and Power in ColonialMauritius (Rochester: Rochester