Poonamma and a people’s history

The popular notion that the indentured workers were primarily male is a misinformed one. Women made up at least a third–as required by government statute–and sometimes close to 40 to 45 percent of the labourers being transported from India.

The continued migration of Indian women through the nearly 100 years of indentureship facilitated greater degree of exclusivity around racial and ethnic boundaries in Trinidad and elsewhere. It also made racial mixture with other groups–particularly the Afro-Trinidadians–less likely, and which often threw up situations of resistance and resentment.

Loading content, please wait...
Himal Southasian