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Security, taxation, and the imperial system in Jamaica, 1721-1782

Burnard, Trevor; Graham, Aaron


Aaron Graham


White Jamaicans paid relatively high rates of taxation to support a powerful and assertive imperial state in schemes of settlement and security. They paid such taxes willingly because they were satisfied with what they got from the state. Furthermore, they believed they had a significant stake in the processes by which taxes were collected and spent. The power of the colonial state depended on the empire being a loose fraternal alliance. Nevertheless, what worked for imperial and colonial Jamaica did not necessarily work elsewhere. Jamaica provides a case study of how the imperial state worked satisfactorily for imperial rulers and those colonists whom they ruled when both the state and colonial settlers shared common beliefs and when negotiations made it clear that the interests of all parties coincided.


Burnard, T., & Graham, A. (2020). Security, taxation, and the imperial system in Jamaica, 1721-1782. Early American Studies, 18(4), 461-489.

Journal Article Type Review
Acceptance Date Sep 1, 2019
Online Publication Date Nov 6, 2020
Publication Date 2020
Deposit Date Sep 16, 2021
Publicly Available Date Sep 24, 2021
Journal Early American Studies
Print ISSN 1543-4273
Electronic ISSN 1559-0895
Publisher University of Pennsylvania Press (Penn Press)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 18
Issue 4
Pages 461-489
Public URL


Article (209 Kb)

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