As we see in this section, Galeano presents a side of sugar that we rarely see/hear or read about. I am particularly interested in your thoughts on Columbus planting the first cane in the Dominican Republic and later its spread to Cuba and the subsequent explosion of sugar thereafter throughout the Caribbean. This particular product has both benefited the world and destroyed entire communities (and all its lives in the path) according to Galeano. Important in this particular section is the transportation and spread of sugar “as king” and also the lives of sugar slaves who had a product as their master. This surely isn’t new information but (1) how can we understand slavery, particularly Latin American and Caribbean slavery in terms of sugar slaves (Galeano, 82). Also destroyed in this sugar rush was the Caribbean ecology and natural landscapes without recourse. (2) There’s a lot that we can talk about here as well.
This section of Galeano’s work is thick with information about a product that still causes so much damage today. How can we grapple its history in Latin America and the Caribbean as we still are involved with sugar today? Thinking about an answer to this and as you reflect on this section of the book, what do you think the relationship to sugar is now in these particular Latin American countries and Caribbean islands? Has the devastation of sugar slavery made a lasting impact that we can still see?
II. Take a moment to conduct some quick research about the production or existence of sugar in any of the places you read about and see what you come up with in terms of the latter set of questions here (ie current relationships to sugar). Please post a link for anything you find that’s relevant to your/our discussion.