You are here -allRefer - Reference - Country Study & Country Guide - Guyana >

allRefer Reference and Encyclopedia Resource

allRefer    
allRefer
   


-- Country Study & Guide --     

 

Guyana

 
Country Guide
Afghanistan
Albania
Algeria
Angola
Armenia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Bangladesh
Belarus
Belize
Bhutan
Bolivia
Brazil
Bulgaria
Cambodia
Chad
Chile
China
Colombia
Caribbean Islands
Comoros
Cyprus
Czechoslovakia
Dominican Republic
Ecuador
Egypt
El Salvador
Estonia
Ethiopia
Finland
Georgia
Germany
Germany (East)
Ghana
Guyana
Haiti
Honduras
Hungary
India
Indonesia
Iran
Iraq
Israel
Cote d'Ivoire
Japan
Jordan
Kazakhstan
Kuwait
Kyrgyzstan
Latvia
Laos
Lebanon
Libya
Lithuania
Macau
Madagascar
Maldives
Mauritania
Mauritius
Mexico
Moldova
Mongolia
Nepal
Nicaragua
Nigeria
North Korea
Oman
Pakistan
Panama
Paraguay
Peru
Philippines
Poland
Portugal
Qatar
Romania
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Seychelles
Singapore
Somalia
South Africa
South Korea
Soviet Union [USSR]
Spain
Sri Lanka
Sudan
Syria
Tajikistan
Thailand
Turkmenistan
Turkey
Uganda
United Arab Emirates
Uruguay
Uzbekistan
Venezuela
Vietnam
Yugoslavia
Zaire

Guyana

Guyana: Historical Setting

[GIF]

Amerindian wood carving

MORE THAN TWENTY-FIVE YEARS after gaining independence, Guyana retained the clear imprint of its colonial past. Sighted by Columbus during his third voyage, the area was virtually ignored by later Spanish explorers and conquistadors. The first European settlers were the Dutch, who established a trading post in 1616. The native Carib and Awarak peoples were killed by disease or conflict over the land or forced into the interior. The Dutch, realizing the agricultural potential of the swampy coast, drained the land with a network of dikes and canals. In the 1700s, the three Dutch colonies in present-day Guyana grew and prospered with plantation economies based on sugarcane and slave labor. Increasing number of British settlers were also drawn to the area in the second half of the eighteenth century. Dutch rule ended in 1814 when the colonies were awarded to Britain following the Napoleonic wars.

Much of British rule in the 1800s was simply a continuation of the policies of the Dutch. Consolidated into one colony--British Guiana--in 1831, the sugar-based economy continued to expand, and when emancipation was completed in 1838 other ethnic groups, most notably from India, were imported to work the plantations. The 1900s saw an increased political awareness of the varied ethnic groups and a slow transfer of political power from the old plantocracy and colonial administration to the Afro-Guyanese and the Indo-Guyanese. Amid growing polarization between these two groups, self-government was granted in the 1950s. Political conflict between the Afro-Guyanese and the Indo-Guyanese, sometimes marked with violence, caused the British to delay independence until 1966. Since independence, two characteristics have dominated Guyanese society and politics: the presence of strong political personalities (Cheddi Jagan, Linden Forbes Burnham, and Hugh Desmond Hoyte) and ethnic and racial divisions based on mutual suspicion and manipulation by these strong personalities.

Ideology played a large part in the newly independent country's approach to economic development. The initial selection of a Marxist-Leninist economic system was motivated by a desire to break with the capitalist past. But authoritarian rule by one dominant political personality and continued ethnic tension undermined the crafting of a coherent or pragmatic development strategy. Independent Guyana's history under its first prime minister, Forbes Burnham, is one of political confrontation and long economic decline. Desmond Hoyte's tenure appeared to represent a departure from the economic and authoritarian policies of his predecessor, but in 1991 it was unclear if the historical patterns of personal political dominance and ethnic tension could be changed.

Data as of January 1992

Guyana - TABLE OF CONTENTS

Guyana -

Guyana: Historical Setting


Guyana -

Go Up - Top of Page

Guyana -

Make allRefer Reference your HomepageAdd allRefer Reference to your FavoritesGo to Top of PagePrint this PageSend this Page to a Friend


Information Courtesy: The Library of Congress - Country Studies


Content on this web site is provided for informational purposes only. We accept no responsibility for any loss, injury or inconvenience sustained by any person resulting from information published on this site. We encourage you to verify any critical information with the relevant authorities.

 

 

 
 


About Us | Contact Us | Terms of Use | Privacy | Links Directory
Link to allRefer | Add allRefer Search to your site

allRefer
All Rights reserved. Site best viewed in 800 x 600 resolution.