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, cooly
1. a cheaply hired unskilled Oriental labourer
2. Derogatory an Indian living in South Africa



a term used to designate low-paid, unskilled workers (including porters, stevedores, manual laborers, rickshaw-boys, and day laborers) in China (prior to 1949), India, and other countries of eastern and southeastern Asia. The name was also used for unskilled workers who signed contracts to work in America, South Africa, and Australia. The workers included Chinese, Indians, Malays, and Negroes, who performed the hardest jobs on plantations and in mines. The institution of contracted coolies arose during the 1830’s and 1840’s, after the abolition of slavery in the British, Dutch, and French colonies, and it grew considerably during the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th.

References in periodicals archive ?
Between the Coolie Location and market square was an area known as Brickfields or Burgersdorp.
While much of the scholarship on Chinese immigration treats these two periods as distinct, Young emphasizes continuities over time and place, connecting the strands to show how the racialized debates about immigrant Chinese labourers transformed anxieties about coolie labour into regulations to exclude or police the "illegal alien.
The 50men strong squad of coolies made the prized catch for the week and averaged 30 rats per coolie who had setpoison baits at different places and most rats fell for it.
Coolies of Capitalism: Assam Tea and the Making of Coolie Labour
Two or three thousand Coolie laborers would go far towards relieving the pressure on the sugar estates; would break the neck of all illegitimate and dangerous methods of supply; would greatly relieve what may be called the miscellaneous labor market; and would render more easy of application, suitable agencies for rendering available the locked-up labor of our own natives.
7) His prominence has endured, and today he could be considered a figure of world literature; his two most famous novels, Untouchable (1935) and Coolie (1936), have been republished many times by many presses, including as Penguin classics--most recently in 2014 and 1994, respectively.
Under this joint venture, future fils from series including Hero No 1, Coolie No 1 and Biwi No 1, will be among the first of Vashu Bhagnani films to be remade.
Coolie was a word used to describe the indentured labourers.
4) Notwithstanding its complexities, the coolie system first introduced Chinese to Cuba and created the basis of a significant mixed-race Chinese Cuban community.
Her puzzling omission of several well-known works on indentured labor elsewhere in the British Empire prevents her from locating this personal and Indo-Guyanese story within larger histories of commodity chains and plantation capitalism, and their connections to global coolie migrations and diasporas.
Performers include Papa U-Gee from Japan; Martin Buchanan from Jamaica; music artists from the Philippines led by Brownman Revival, Tropical Depression, Reggae Mistress, Indio-I, Coffee Break Island with Skarlet of Brownbeat All-Stars, Coolie Herb, I-dren Artstrong, Coconut Head, Bahaghari, Chocolate Factory, The Blanc, DJ Kimozave and Cocojam.
His most notable ones include the aACAyNo 1' series of films he did, including Coolie No 1, Hero No 1, Aunty No 1, Anari No 1, Beti No 1 and Jodi No 1.