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Free eBooks for download about the Surinamese (plantation) history

In the past year I worked on two eBooks in my spare time containing stories about the Surinamese (plantation) history. These stories were written in the period between 2003 and 2009 by my father Kenneth R. Donk. The stories were divided into three main themes and each theme is covered in a separate book. The two books that are already released (since October 1st 2021) and that can be downloaded for free (as a PDF) are: “Gese­lec­teerde Arti­kelen — Suri­naamse Historie, Plantages en Archi­tec­tuur” and “Gese­lec­teerde Ar­tike­len — Suri­naamse His­torie, Plaat­sen en Le­vens­verha­len.”

Both books are in the Dutch language, since the stories were originally published in Dutch, and are also available for download in high definition format (with much larger photos compared to the free version), which requires a minimum donation amount.

Don’t expect any dry essays containing historical data and facts; the stories are written in a more light-hearted style where you basically go on an adventure through old ruins of plantations and meet various people who tell stories about their past while living on the plantations in Suriname. There’s also a third book that we’re still working on which should be finished sometime next year. If you specify your email address when you download the above two books you’ll be kept updated on the progress.

For me this was the first time that I worked on designing books (I did newspapers and magazines in the past), and from start to finish it’s a decent amount of work. A lot of time also went into photo editing, such as retouching and restoration of some of the old photos that are included, sometimes with the help of Artificial Intelligence (AI). As an example, you can see an old photo of me below that was enhanced using AI technology. I think you’ll agree with me that the result is amazing.

An example of photo enhancement using AI technology. On the left the original scanned photo, and on the right the version that was enhanced using AI.

The results of AI technology can often seem like sorcery. In fact, I’ve made the comment in the past that AI researchers and engineers are the wizards/sorcerers of our time.

So anyway, check out the books and if you have any feedback let me know, especially if you find any errors.

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