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Caribbean Islands Table of Contents

Caribbean Islands

The Impact of the Conquest

The Europeans who invaded and conquered the Caribbean terminated the internally cohesive world of the native peoples and subordinated the region and the peoples to the events of a wider world in which their fortunes were linked with those of Africa, Europe, and the Americas. The Caribbean peoples were devastated by new epidemic diseases, such as measles, smallpox, malaria, and dysentery, introduced by the Europeans and the Africans imported as slaves. Their social and political organizations were restructured in the name of Christianity. Their simple lives were regimented by slavery and the demands of profit-oriented, commercial-minded Europeans. Above all, they were slowly inundated culturally and demographically by the stream of new immigrants in the years immediately after the conquest.

Data as of November 1987