I am very grateful to Dr Brij Lal for sharing his articles and research work which has provided me great insight to the indenture system. Professor Brij Lal, was appointed a Member (AM) of the Order of Australia in the 2015 Queen’s Birthdays Honours List, for his significant service to education, the teaching of Pacific history and its preservation, for scholarship and for his tireless work as an author, researcher and commentator.
Born in the village of Tabia, on the island of Vanua Levu, Professor Lal received his tertiary education at the University of the South Pacific, the University of British Columbia and the Australian National University. Professor Lal’s 1981 PhD thesis (ANU) Leaves of the Banyan tree: origins and background of Fiji’s north Indian indentured migrants, 1879-1916, explored the complex and differentiated process of the Indian diaspora and labour emigration to Fiji.
Professor Lal’s book publications include: Pacific Places, Pacific Histories, University of Hawaii Press (2004); Pacific Islands: An Encyclopaedia (2000); and, Broken Waves: A History of the Fiji Islands in the Twentieth Century (1992).
Professor Lal’s career highlights includes being a member of the Fiji Constitution Review Commission whose report forms the basis of Fiji’s constitution.