The Newsletter 45 Autumn 2007

Still standing: the maintenance of a white elite in Mauritius

Tijo Salverda

<p>In the centre of Port Louis, the capital of the Indian Ocean island nation of Mauritius, stands a statue of Adrien d&rsquo;Epinay, the renowned forefather of the island&rsquo;s white minority known as Franco-Mauritians. For many Mauritians d&rsquo;Epinay represents the resistance of the colonial elite white plantation owners to the abolition of slavery, and many islanders call for the statue&rsquo;s removal as often as they criticise the privileged position of d&rsquo;Epinay&rsquo;s descendants. Nevertheless, both the statue and the white elite are still standing.</p>