Conducts research and collects data on the global history of labour, workers, and labour relations

Abolition of the Slave Trade

30 June 2008 to 2 July 2008
IISH, Amsterdam

The colloquium focused on the long-term consequences of the British abolition of the Atlantic slave trade (1807-8). The conference focused on:

  1. the "invention" of alternative forms of labor recruitment in the affected regions in the Americas;
  2. the influence of the abolition on struggles against unfree labor in other parts of the world;
  3. impact of the abolition on Africa;
  4. shifts in the production of tropical cash crops to other parts of the world and the possible link of these shifts to the Abolition Act;
  5. European abolition and the end of New World slavery as an ideological argument in favor of European colonialism.

The conference papers are only available for participants.

Program and Participants

David Eltis, Was Abolition of the US and British Slave Trade Significant in the Broader Atlantic Context?

Dick Geary, The Limited Impact of 1808 on Brazil 

Piet Emmer, 'As always, the Trouble with the French'. Great Britain, France, the Netherlands, and the Colonial Labour Market during the Nineteenth Century

Robin Blackburn, Revolution and Emancipation: The Role of Abolitionism in Ending of Slavery in the Americas

Stanley Engerman, Slavery after the Abolition of the Slave Trade: The United States and the British West Indies

Claus Füllberg-Stolberg, Economic Adjustments and the Fight for Cultural Hegemony in the British and Danish West Indies after Slavery 

Ulbe Bosma, The discourse on Free Labour and the Forced Cultivation System: the Contradictory Consequences of the abolition of the slave trade and the struggle against slavery in colonial Java, 1811-1863

Roger Knight, Indenture, Grand Narratives and Fragmented Histories: the Netherlands Indies, c.1880-1940 

Sandew Hira, E-science, Slavery and Indentured Labour – the Case of Suriname

Julia Seibert, More continuity than change? New Forms of Unfree Labour in Colonial Africa: The Case of the Belgian Congo (1908-1960) 

Andreas Eckert, Abolitionist Rhetorics, Colonial Conquest and the Slow Death for Slavery in the German Colonial Empire in Africa 

Andreas Gestrich, The Abolition Act and the Development of Abolitionist Movements in Nineteenth-Century Europe

Susan Zimmermann, The Long-Term Trajectory of Anti-Slavery Internationalism: from European Self-Criticism through Cooperative Colonial Reform to Unequal International Development 

Angelie Sens, The Veil in Post-Slavery Society. The Case of Suriname, 1808-2008

James Walvin, Commemorating abolition. 1807-2007