FORUM: Dubois, Girard, Gaffield, and Jenson on Jean-Jacques Dessalines

The July 2012 issue of the William and Mary Quarterly is hosting a special forum on “Jean-Jacques Dessalines and the Haitian Revolution.”  The forum includes: Laurent Dubois, “Dessalines Toro d’Haiti.” Philippe R. Girard, “Jean-Jacques Dessalines and the Atlantic System:  A Reappraisal:” Revered in Haiti as a founding father committed to his countrymen’s freedom and independence, decried by his white contemporaries as a bloodthirsty brute, Haitian … Continue reading FORUM: Dubois, Girard, Gaffield, and Jenson on Jean-Jacques Dessalines

2012 Frederick Douglass Book Prize Finalists Announced

The finalists for the 14th Annual Frederick Douglass Book Prize have been announced.

From the announcement:

Robin Blackburn for The American Crucible: Slavery, Emancipation and Human Rights (Verso Books)

In The American Crucible, Robin Blackburn has provided one of the most commanding and wide-ranging examinations of Atlantic abolitionism in years.  In an era of specialization, Blackburn thinks big, connecting emancipation moments through both time and space. Blackburn’s work compels scholars to think anew about abolitionism’s relevance to global modernity.

R. Blakeslee Gilpin for John Brown Still Lives: America’s Long Reckoning with Violence, Equality, and Change (University of North Carolina Press)

Finding new scholarly perspectives on John Brown is no easy task but R. Blakeslee Gilpin’s engaging and ramifying book does just that by examining the myriad ways that Americans have used Brown’s memory since the Civil War era. John Brown Still Lives! offers a profound meditation on the long-running debate over slavery, freedom and the struggle for racial justice in American hearts and minds.

Carla L. Peterson for Black Gotham: A Family History of African Americans in
Nineteenth-Century New York City (Yale University Press)

Carla Peterson’s Black Gotham brilliantly reconstructs her own family’s elusive past as a window unto free black life in 19th century New York. Part detective tale, part cultural history, Peterson’s book recaptures hidden stories of black abolitionism, economic uplift, Civil War heroism, and turn-of-the-century civil rights movements. By painstakingly reconstructing a segment of black New York, Peterson highlights a vibrant cast of characters who constantly redefined the meaning of both American and African American freedom.

James H. Sweet for Domingos Álvares, African Healing, and the Intellectual
History of the Atlantic World (University of North Carolina Press)

James Sweet’s thoughtful and moving book about African healer Domingos Alvares provides much more than a biographical portrait of a remarkable 18th century man. Rather, Sweet’s imaginative reconstruction of Alvares’ life in and out of bondage places African worldviews at the center of Atlantic history. Domingos Alvares also makes a compelling case for redefining the intellectual history of Atlantic society from Africans’ perspectives.

Continue reading “2012 Frederick Douglass Book Prize Finalists Announced”

ARTICLE: Paton on Obeah and Poison in Atlantic Slavery

Paton, Diana. “Witchcraft, Poison, Law, and Atlantic Slavery.” The William and Mary Quarterly 69, no. 2 (April 1, 2012): 235–264. Abstract: In response to Tacky’s Rebellion in 1760 in Jamaica, the colony’s House of Assembly passed a law naming a new crime, “obeah.” This important statute led the way in establishing obeah as a phenomenon understood by colonial authorities as a singular and dangerous problem. … Continue reading ARTICLE: Paton on Obeah and Poison in Atlantic Slavery

ARTICLE: Deusen on Indigenous Slaves in Castile

Nancy E. van Deusen. “Seeing Indios in Sixteenth-Century Castile.” The William and Mary Quarterly 69, no. 2 (April 1, 2012): 205–234. Abstract: This article considers the construction of indigenous (indio) slave identity within the contexts of the sixteenth-century Atlantic and Mediterranean worlds. Of the more than two thousand indio slaves from Latin America who were forced to migrate to Castile during the sixteenth century, nearly … Continue reading ARTICLE: Deusen on Indigenous Slaves in Castile

BOOK: Walvin on the British Slave Ship Zong

James Walvin.  The Zong: A Massacre, the Law and the End of Slavery. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2011. via publisher’s website: On November 29, 1781, Captain Collingwood of the British ship Zong commanded his crew to throw overboard one-third of his cargo: a shipment of Africans bound for slavery in America. The captain believed his ship was off course, and he feared there … Continue reading BOOK: Walvin on the British Slave Ship Zong

BOOK: Stuart on Slavery and Family in Barbados

Andrea Stuart. Sugar in the Blood: A Family’s Story of Slavery and Empire. London: Portobello Books, 2012. via publisher website: In the late 1630s, Andrea Stuart’s earliest known maternal ancestor set sail from England, lured by the promise of the New World, to settle in Barbados where he fell by chance into the lucrative life of a sugar plantation owner.With George Ashby’s first crop, the … Continue reading BOOK: Stuart on Slavery and Family in Barbados

ARTICLE: Bethencourt on Creolization and Kongo Agency

  Francisco Bethencourt. “Creolization of the Atlantic World: The Portuguese and the Kongolese.” Portuguese Studies 27, no. 1 (2011): 56–69. Abstract: From In the 1930s, Gilberto Freyre’s praise of mixed-race people in Brazil challenged the idea of white supremacy, contributing to the building of a new Brazilian identity. In the 1950s, Freyre projected the idea of openness and racial mixture onto the Portuguese empire, fuelling … Continue reading ARTICLE: Bethencourt on Creolization and Kongo Agency

BOOK: Rivers on Slave Resistance in Florida

Larry Eugene Rivers. Rebels and Runaways: Slave Resistance in Nineteenth-Century Florida. University of Illinois Press, 2012. From the press website: This gripping study examines slave resistance and protest in antebellum Florida and its local and national impact from 1821 to 1865. Using a variety of sources such as slaveholders’ wills and probate records, ledgers, account books, court records, oral histories, and numerous newspaper accounts, Larry … Continue reading BOOK: Rivers on Slave Resistance in Florida

BOOK: Weiner and Hough on Sex, Sickness, and Slavery

Marli F. Weiner and Mayzie Hough. Sex, Sickness, and Slavery: Defining Illness in the Antebellum South. Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2012. From the press website: Marli F. Weiner skillfully integrates the history of medicine with social and intellectual history in this study of how race and sex complicated medical treatment in the antebellum South. Sex, Sickness, and Slavery argues that Southern physicians’ scientific training … Continue reading BOOK: Weiner and Hough on Sex, Sickness, and Slavery

ARTICLE: Millward on Enslaved Women, Bodies, and Maryland Manumission Law

Jessica Millward,. “‘That All Her Increase Shall Be Free’: Enslaved Women’s Bodies and the Maryland 1809 Law of Manumission.” Women’s History Review 21, no. 3 (2012): 363–378. Abstract: This article investigates the relationship between manumission laws and enslaved women’s bodies in Maryland, USA. The point of departure is the 1809 ‘Act to Ascertain and Declare the Condition of Such Issue as may hereafter be born … Continue reading ARTICLE: Millward on Enslaved Women, Bodies, and Maryland Manumission Law