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Eric Williiams and the Nationalist Project

According to Lloyd Best:

In the final analysis, the PNM did not know how to use the political context which it had won in 1956 and we must see that this failure falls strictly in the logic of Afro-Saxon strategy which we adapted in the nineteenth century. Accustomed to advancing by denying our own worth, we have found it easier to rely on outside help in our quest for change. We have found it easier to rely on a Doctor [Williams] than to take up our own beds and walk.

Instead of dealing with sugar, petroleum and the banks, instead of breaking the metropolitan stranglehold on the economy which had kept the West Indian people in chains from the start, Williams and the PNM adopted the Lewis prescription of industrialization by invitation. We hoped for economic transformation by borrowing capital, by borrowing management, by kowtowing before every manner of alien expert we could find. We failed to see that this kind of dependence in our territorial context amounted to nothing by obsequiousness, servility, and in the last resort, to a shattering vote of no-confidence in the people of Trinidad and Tobago (Best 1970,4)

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