Michael Manley And Black Jamaica


Michael Manley And Black Jamaica

(Jamaica’s great mulatto leader )


Michael Manley’s  was a self identified mulatto, he helped Jamaica progress economicall, politically, and educationally.


By Chance Kelsey, chancellorfiles.com


Michael Manley (born on December 10, 1924 – died March 6, 1997) was perhaps Jamaica’s most popular prime minister (leader). Michael was the son of Jamaican national political hero Norman Manley and famous Jamaican sculptor Edna Manley. Norman Manley was a politician and was the founder of Jamaica’s people’s National Party (PNP).
Norman Manley was Jamaica’s prime minister from 1959 to 1962.

Michael Manley called himself a mulatto because he was mixed race. He served three terms as Jamaica’s prime minister from 1972 to 1980 and 1989 to 1992. He stepped down as prime minister in 1992 because of bad health.
Michael was passionate about third world issues (problems that affected poor Jamaicans and poor people living in poor countries). Michael Manley is one of the most important political fugues in Caribbean history. He really cared about the Jamaican people and many people in Jamaica care about him and admired him. Michael Manley died on March 6, 1997 at the age of 72.


– a minimum wage for all workers.
– free education at secondary and university level, to the extent of spaces available.
– institution of literacy campaign.
– subdivision of ‘idle lands’ to poor blacks.
– formation of agrarian cooperatives.
– price controls on numerous staples to benefit the poor.
– reduction of voting age to 18 years, thus increasing the black vote.
– institutionalizing paid maternity leave & free milk to mothers.
– public utilities, a large bank and part of the tourism business were rationalized.

Before Manley came to power there was job discrimination directed towards Rastafarians. Most Jamaican employers and even black employers would not hire Rastafarians. Michael Manley encouraged employers to employ (hire) Rastafarians in the work place and many did. Manley helped increase social economic mobility for the poor. Foreign investors dominated Jamaica’s economy for a long time but Manley cut foreign domination by 50%, putting Jamaica’s economy in the hands of the Jamaican people by using businessmen, companies, and Jamaican financial investors.  

He encouraged Jamaican people to be united as one people regardless of race and social class. He used the slogan “better must come” to encourage the people, He instilled a sense of pride and hope that economic development is possible for Jamaica. Under the Michael Manley’s mulatto leadership from the 1970s and 1980s the quality of life improved for all Jamaicans, Rastafarians, and including the majority black population.

Edward Philip George Seaga became prime minister of Jamaica from 1980 to 1989 he was elected after Michael Manley’s first term as prime minister. During Michael Manley’s and Seaga’s leaderships Jamaica had problem but the country was better than it was before (1969 on down). Because of Michael Manley being mixed race he is what is classified as mulatto elite.
Those mixed race people who become very successful economically, politically, educationally, etc in life and contribute to the development of society. Often in the Western world Of the Americas and Caribbean the mulatto elite have been leaders over black people. And sometimes mulatto mixed race men still get elected to political office by blacks. The contributions of the mulattoes to the Americas and black people have been numerous.

In Jamaica the black population and other non black Jamaicans respect the right of mulattoes (mixed race) to self identify as mulatto. They do not try to force them to identify as black. In Jamaica the word mulatto is not offense.                                 
Jamaica currently does not have a one drop blood rule that says one drop of black blood makes you black. Jamaicans realize how ridiculous this would be. It is like saying one drop of white blood makes you white, which is also silly and false. 

Mulattoes have contributed to the modernization and economic development of Jamaica all through the 20th century. Michael Manley and his father Norman Manley were living testimonies to the contributions of mulattoes to Jamaica. 

Today Jamaica is known as one of the most popular tourist attractions in the world.

Mixed race people should feel proud of knowing that their fellow mulattoes have contributed in helping the Caribbean, United States, Canada, Mexico, South and Central America progress economically, politically, socially, educationally, and inventions.  

  1. Janise

    I’m a fan of Michael Manley, the second son of Norman Manley, who was also a leader of Jamaica. They are relatives of The Right Excellent Sir William Alexander Clarke Bustamante, GBE and National Hero of Jamaica, who was a Jamaican politician and labour leader.

    Bustamante was born William Alexander Clarke to an Irish Roman Catholic planter and a mother of Taíno origins. He took the name Bustamante to honour an Iberian sea captain who befriended him in his youth.

    The aforementioned gentlemen are testament to one of the key philosophies of the Caribbean, which is summarised beautifully by Jamaica’s famous motto: “Out of many, one people”. It is the code that so many West Indians live by and is practised across most of Caribbean.

    I think the likes of Bob Marley and Sean Paul, who are both mixed race yet proud Jamaicans who identify themselves primarily as black, are among many present-day shining examples of this. They are proud of their mixed ancestry, but feel no sense of shame or stigma in calling themselves black.

    They also – rightly – do not regard that identifying with the black race, sharing in its history, its triumphs and its struggles, and acknowledging that not only are they descendants of indentured servants, who survived the holocaust that was the transatlantic slave trade, but also of African kings and queens as a negation, or, indeed, a denial of their multiracial heritage.

  2. Chance

    I support peoples right to self identify as they feel and please.

  3. Another Proud Mixed Person

    Mixed race people do not need permission from anyone — especially blacks — to self-identify as they please. (It is usually blacks who want mixed-race people to identify as black.)

    Case in point: In post #1 above, read how “proud” Janise seems to be that Bob Marley and Sean Paul identify as black…

  4. Chance

    That is a good observation that you made of post #1 Another Proud Mixed Person.

  5. Janise

    I’m proud that Sean Paul and Bob Marley have not simply chosen to align themselves with the most economically powerful group in the world, and that they understand the true historical might of their African identity.

    Many mixed-race people evidently do not understand this. They, instead, try to distance themselves from their black ancestry and suck up to a race that clearly do not want them – the white race.

    Was it not white people that constructed the one drop rule in the first place? A brief look at world history shows that white people do not want to accept mixed-race people as belonging to their race. You should be HONOURED that many black folk have tried to embrace you.

  6. Joseph

    Generally, Mulattoes do not want whites to embrace them into the white race. That’s just ignorace on your part. Unfortunately for us, the ODR tore many of our communities apart. It’s nice that’s blacks are willing to “embrace” us but we are not black. We can always be on friendly terms however, as all races should be in my opinion.

  7. Rickardo

    Replying many years later! Folks you have to remember Jamaica is an independent country free of the US. We do not use the 1 drop slave master rule. As a Brown Jamaican, you can look up Brown/Coloured/Mulatto in Jamaica, a distinctive group in our history. We did not cater up to our White counterparts, we had and still have some semblance of an unspoken community.In America we tend to be confused with Hispanics who a majority are Mulattoes/Mestizo= Creole. Brown is used to identify mixed race Jamaicans from the early days. In Latin America, Europe, etc its Mulatto and Creole.

  8. Mike

    I read most of the comments, some made many years ago and the most recent 2013, as coming from a people who are still not sure of themselves. The world over see Jamaica as comprising majorly black people, but i see that the country is still so divided on racial grounds despite the effort of great Nationalists like Michael Manley and Bob Marley. The mixed race bigots like those above are hell bent on emphasizing that they are not black. May I know what thing of significance they have contributed to the country that they call theirs except to wear that insignificant label on their sleeves of backwardness. Such a bloody shame in the 21st century

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