Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the Haitian Revolution. In 1791 an uprising began in the French colonial territory of St Domingue. Partly a consequence of the French Revolution and partly a backlash against the brutality of slave owners, it turned into a complex struggle involving not just the residents of the island but French, English and Spanish forces. By 1804 the former slaves had won, establishing the first independent state in Latin America and the first nation to be created as a result of a successful slave rebellion. But the revolution also created one of the world's most impoverished societies, a legacy which Haiti has struggled to escape.


Kate Hodgson, Postdoctoral Research Fellow in French at the University of Liverpool

Tim Lockley, Reader in American Studies at the University of Warwick

Karen Salt, Fellow in History in the School of Language and Literature at the University of Aberdeen

Producer: Luke Mulhall.