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Mobilizing Labour for the Global Coffee Market

Profits From an Unfree Work Regime in Colonial Java

Jan Breman

412 pages
Amsterdam University Press
Coffee has been grown on Java for the commercial market since the early eighteenth century, when the Dutch East India Company began buying from peasant producers in the Priangan highlands. What began as a commercial transaction, however, soon became a system of compulsory production. This book shows how the Dutch East India Company mobilised land and labour, why they turned to force cultivation, and what effects the brutal system they installed had on the economy and society.
Author Bio
Jan Breman is emeritus professor of comparative sociology at the University of Amsterdam. He continues his scholarly research, mainly focused on work and labour in Asia, as Fellow at the Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research and as a Honorary Fellow at the International Institute of Social History in Amsterdam