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Professor Walter Rodney In the short life that he lived has marked his name indelibly on the twentieth century. Walter was born in Guyana and excelled early, there was much made of his potential, even when he was a boy. He attended Queens College the premier secondary school in Guyana, from which he won the national Exhibition Scholarship. In what is a very rare case Rodney's name proceeded him to University College of the West Indies, as it was then, and his arrival was awaited as something special. Rodney did not disappoint and immediately made his mark on University life. He was extremely active and got himself elected to be President of the Guild of Undergraduates. The world famous Arthur Lewis had just returned as Principal of the College, and was carrying out revolutionary changes, which were to provide more courses, education for more students, establish two new Campuses, and make the University College free of the University College of London, establishing the University College as an independent University. However, Lewis was given a lot of problems by the fifteen heads of state of the Caribbean countries, who partly funded the university, and were making too many unnecessary demands. Lewis was unfortunately also given problems by some of the undergraduates, who objected to him enlarging the University, as well as by some of the lecturers who would leak matters that they discussed, and which he wanted to remain private, to the press. Arthur Lewis became so frustrated at the bickering and lack of professionalism, that he resigned. This sent shock waves through the West Indies and Walter Rodney was instrumental in protesting and leading the Guild of Undergraduates, to stage demonstrations for Professor Lewis to remain. Premier Eric Williams of Trinidad & Tobago a friend of Lewis', raised the matter at the Federal Parliament. They managed to prevail and persuade Professor Lewis to remain, until he was Practically driven out again in 1963, and left for Princeton University. Rodney was so active nationally and internationally that some feared it would effect his studies. It did not, and he took First Class Honours in History. Proceeding to the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in London, Rodney completed his Doctoral Thesis and it is said "he blew away all the intellectual cobwebs at SOAS" Rodney was appointed to teach at the University of Dar-es Salam in Tanzania, where he was later awarded his Professorship. It was while he was teaching there that he brought out his world famous book "How Europe Underdeveloped Africa." This book debunked once and for all, racist nonsense written by other scholars, who had ignored just how developed Africa was, when Europe and She first made contact. In it Rodney compared time and time again various civilisations and kingdoms in Africa with those in Europe, and showed how much on par they were in many respects. The book also firmly established once and for all, that Africa's current underdevelopment and Europe's development, was a corollary of Europe underdeveloping Africa, through gross exploitation to develop herself. It was a landmark in scholarship which followed in theme, C.L.R. James's ' Black Jacobins' which was the first in the theme, then Eric Williams' 'Capitalism and Slavery', which was the second, secured Rodney's reputation internationally. Rodney then returned to the Carribean to teach at the University of the West Indies in Jamaica, where he kept up his international activism, but on his return from an international conference he was refused leave to re-enter Jamaica! He was subsequently banned from a number of countries, though he did nothing remotely outside of the law. Appointed Professor of History at the University of Guyana, in the land of his birth, the Prime Minister of Guyana, Forbes Burnham, who ruled Guyana as his own fiefdom, refused to let the University employ him. Rodney kept up his research and writing and brought out another excellent book 'The History of Guyanese Working People', in which he could not even give credits to his research assistants for the fear that they to would be victimised. He became socially active, holding public meetings where he exposed the Burnham regime's shortcomings. He also lectured in the villages throughout Guyana, he built up a large popular following, where tens of thousands would attend his public rallies. Thugs, encouraged by the government and aided by the police would break up his rallies, physically attacking the speakers, who were forced to flee for their safety. But Rodney was not daunted, and continued until he captured the minds of the populace and stole the thunder of opposition leader Cheddi Jagan, who like Burnham was forced into the background. Rodney became too popular for his own good, and at the height of his activism he was given a walkie-talkie by a Guyana Defence Force Soldier, when he tried it out it exploded in his lap. He was told to keep it tightly to his head, near the jail to test for interference with the hope it would blow his head off. Initial reports incorrectly claimed a person who was unrecognisable had bee killed. The heavy hand of guilt For Walter Rodney's murder points strongly at the Forbes Burnham regime.