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backdam (plural backdams)

  1. (Guyana) A region of rural, undeveloped land, especially on the outskirts of a farm.
    • 1990, Arnold ITwaru, Shanti: a novel, page 74:
      The factory thrusted and pounded, puffed, and its afternoon siren screamed its deafening blast and warning, makring the hour for labourers miles away in the backdams and sugarcane fields of endeavour.
    • 2013, Hanna Garth, Food and Identity in the Caribbean, page 145:
      The backdam is the region on the outskirts of plantations, which many slaves cultivated during and after slavery. Guyanese continue to actively farm backdams even today. In the Spanish Caribbean backdams are referred to as “conucos.”
    • 2017 December 30, “For Saiku Andrews, it’s all about the music”, in Stabroek News[1]:
      In fact, the artiste shared that at different points in his life, he counted papers for Stabroek News, was a cobbler, an office assistant, an accountant at Kuru Kuru Cooperative College and also worked in the backdams among other odd jobs.
    • 2018, Diane L. Wolf, Feminist Dilemmas In Fieldwork:
      This section, and for the most parts its residents, were considered to be of higher status and moral character than persons from the "backdam," the section farthest from the seaside and nearest to the community's farmland. In more general terms, the backdam was also the section of plantations where the slave quarters had been located, whereas the slave owner's and overseer's residences had been located in the front seaside section.