by John lition of slavery in the early 1830s in the British, French and Dutch colonies of the West Indies/Caribbean led to a severe shortage of labour in the sugarcane plantations. The ex-slaves had exercised their right of freedom of choice to discontinue working on the sugar cane even for a wage. The subsequent shortage of labour served as a catalyst for the introduction of a system of imported contract labour. The British first introduced labourers from India to the Caribbean through a semi-slave system of contract labour, lasting five to ten years, known as Indentureship. In 1838, Britain sent the first Indian labourers from the port of Calcutta to British Guiana (now Guyana) based on the success of the system in Mauritius.
Initially, the Caribbean initiative met resistance, since accusations were levelled at the harsh treatment of the newly-arrived workers. Nevertheless, with lobbying by John Gladstone and other British planters, the system continued and expanded. It was later extended to Trinidad and Jamaica [18451 and then to other Caribbean islands like St. Lucia , St. Vincent , Grenada  and St. Kills . The system was also adopted by the French and Dutch who took Indians to Martinique , Guadeloupe , French Guiana , St. Croix  and Suriname . By the time the Indentureship system ended in 1917, about 400,000 Indians came to the Caribbean colonies, most of whom chose to settle in the islands in the New World.
Kumar Mahabir is an Assistant Professor in the School for Studies in Learning, Cognition and Education at the University of Trinidad and Tobago (UTT). He did his Ph.D. in Anthropology at the University of Florida. Mahabir is The Author of seven (7) books [including two national bestsellers Caribbean East Indian Recipes and Medicinal and Edible Plants used by East Indians of Trinidad and Tobago] and several articles in scholarly journals. Mahabir is also the CEO of the company, Chakra Publishing House, and Co-curator of the Indian Caribbean Museum. For several years, he has been involved in research on (Fast) Indian/South Asian culture in the Caribbean.
Introduction : An Overview of Indian Diaspora in the Caribbean/Kumar Mahabir
1. Involuntary Globalization : How Britain Revived Indenture and Made it Largely Brown and East Indian (Trinidad 1806-1921)/A. Neil Sookdeo
2. From Hindu to Presbyndu : The Acculturation of the Indian in the Caribbean/Brinsley Samaroo
3. Migration and Shifting (Communal) Identifications : Munshi Rahman Khan (1874-1972)/Ellen Bal & Kathinka Sinha-Kerkhoff
4. Indo-Guyanese Diaspora within the Caribbean : Migration and Identity/Lomarsh Roopnarine
5. Race Retention and Culture Loss : South Asians East Indians in St. Vincent/Kumar Mahabir
6. Values and Beliefs of Indo-Guyanese : An Assessment of the Assimilation Hypothesis/Preethy S. Samuel & Leon C. Wilson
7. "I Found My Hast Indian Beauty." Locating the Indo Trinidadian Woman in Trinidadian Soca Music/Kai Abi Barratt
8. Racial Stereotypes and Indian-African Relations in Grenada, 1857-1960s/Ron Sookram
9. The Impossibility of Resistance : 1970s Guyana in Oonya Kempadoo's Buxton Spice Savena Budhu
10. Kala Pani Coolitude East Indian Subjectivity in the Caribbean/Smita Tripathi
11. Mothers-Hyphenated Imaginations : The Feasts of Soparee Ke Mai and La Divina Pastora in Trinidad/Teruyuki Tsuji
12. The Representation of Indians in the Education System of Trinidad and Tobago, 1845-1980/Sherry-Ann Singh
13. Balram Singh Rai : Guyana's Indian Social and Political Reformer/Baytoram Ramharack