This edited collection examines the realities of the last remnants of the European colonial empires in the Caribbean, namely the British, Dutch and French overseas territories.
Although known and perhaps infamous for their role as high-end tourist destinations and financial centres, these small jurisdictions are complex and multifaceted places. While this volume considers their role as financial centres, it does so from alternative and original perspectives by examining how the sector shapes the internal dynamics of these Caribbean societies, and how it is itself shaped by global trends. A range of contributions is included that highlight other key issues. Political relations between the territories and their metropolitan centres and with the European Union are the focus of several chapters, highlighting the stresses and strains, and in many cases the unfulfilled expectations of devolved governance. Further chapters describe the economic instability and factors of political conflict faced by some of these societies and the available options to address them. Finally, several chapters reflect more specifically on the territories’ internal social and ethnic dynamics, and the hierarchies and inequalities that result.
Bringing together a variety of different disciplinary perspectives, from political science to sociology, and from anthropology to geography, this book will be of great interest to any academic or student who wishes to see how an often overlooked part of the world is actually a key site of socio-economic transformation and a crucial nexus in global affairs.
Sébastien Chauvin is a sociologist and an Associate Professor at the Institut des Sciences Sociales at the University of Lausanne, Switzerland. His research deals with immigration, citizenship, gender, sexuality, law and labour in France and the USA. With Bruno Cousin, he has also developed a multi-sited research programme on social and symbolic capital and the cultural sociology of economic élites, with a focus on Western Europe (élite male social club sociability), the Caribbean region (Saint-Barthélemy), and new forms of conspicuous consumption among the global super-rich. His other ongoing writing explores the intersections of race, nationalism, sexuality and citizenship in the Netherlands, France and the USA.
Bruno Cousin is Assistant Professor of Sociology at Sciences Po, France, and an affiliate of the Centre of European Studies and Comparative Politics (CEE), France. Previously, he was Assistant Professor at the University of Lille, France, and Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Harvard University, USA, and has held visiting positions at NYU, the University of Amsterdam and Birkbeck. His research interests focus on class relations, residential segregation, social capital and forms of bourgeois sociability, and the modes of élites’ legitimization. He is currently conducting research with Sébastien Chauvin on Saint-Barthélemy (French West Indies), whose first results have been published in Ethnologie française and Geographies of the Super-Rich (2013), and he has recently co-authored Ce que les riches pensent des pauvres (2017).
Introduction – Offshore Europe on the move
Sébastien Chauvin, Peter Clegg and Bruno Cousin
Part I: Institutional, Political and Regulatory Processes: The transformation of relations with the metropolitan states, the EU, and the international community
1 The British Overseas Territories in the Caribbean and their quest for further autonomy
2 Status Change in the Caribbean part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands: What for?
Lammert de Jong and Ron van der Veer
3 The French Caribbean between egalitarian aspirations and identity assertions: Towards a realisation of difference?
4 From Brussels with love: Shifting governance and the evolution of ‘Overseas Europe’
Matthew Louis Bishop and Genève Phillip
5 Brexit and the Overseas Territories: Repercussions for the periphery
6 Global financial governance and the Euro-Caribbean overseas territories: First and second order effects for offshore finance
Part II: Economic Transformations, Local Elites and the Current Dynamics of Inequality
7 Colonial heritages and continuities in Guadeloupe and Martinique: An economic perspective
8 A postcolonial economy? Protesters, lobbyists and small-business-owners in Martinique after 2009
9 French Guiana – A ‘Plural Society’ in a post-colonial context
Gérard Collomb and Edenz Maurice
10 Deconstructing development: immigration, society and economy in early 21st century Cayman
11 Sub-elites as fiduciary gatekeepers of global elites: A fiscal anthropology of the Cayman Islands as an offshore financial centre
12 Integration with the Metropolis: The Dutch Caribbean ‘municipalities’ after 2010
13 Intimacy and integration: The ambivalent achievement of marriage equality in the Dutch Caribbean, 2007-12