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New England Bound: Slavery and Colonization…
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New England Bound: Slavery and Colonization in Early America (udgave 2016)

af Wendy Warren (Forfatter)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
1523141,929 (3.96)14
"Based on new evidence, Warren links the growth of the northern colonies to the Atlantic slave trade, demonstrating how New England's economy derived its vitality from the profusion of slave-trading ships coursing through its ports. Warren documents how Indians were systematically sold into slavery in the West Indies and reveals how colonial families like the Winthrops were motivated not only by religious freedom but also by their slave-trading investments. New England Bound punctures the myth of a shining 'City on a Hill,' forcefully demonstrating that the history of American slavery can no longer confine itself to the nineteenth-century South."--Publisher's Web site.… (mere)
Medlem:rsmith33
Titel:New England Bound: Slavery and Colonization in Early America
Forfattere:Wendy Warren (Forfatter)
Info:Liveright (2016), Edition: 1, 368 pages
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek
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New England Bound: Slavery and Colonization in Early America af Wendy Warren

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I really really enjoyed this--it was concise and not boring, it created empathy and space for all kinds of experiences, and it's a trade history publication that talks directly about settler colonialism! I could see this being really incredibly useful in undergraduate courses or even just to start conversations with folks outside the academy (it could be a really excellent book club book, for example!) Obviously there are limitations to its scope, and I've read reviews about sourcing she doesn't use, but I think it's a really solid introduction to enslavement in New England and fighting the dominant narratives about that. ( )
  aijmiller | Sep 19, 2017 |
When we think about slavery in America, we most often think of the South with its large plantations; but in this book, Wendy Warren examines slavery in very early colonial New England, mostly the slavery of Africans and Native Americans, but she does touch briefly on indentured servitude, particularly that by prisoners sent to the colonies. Warren tells us that at its peak there were a 1000 slaves in New England.

Well-written and sourced, and very readable, Warren’s history links 17th Century New England slavery with the region's economic dependency on, and its part in, what is known now as "The Triangle Trade." I’ve read several other books on Africans in New England (one was a PhD thesis), but I found Warren’s book an honest, penetrating and humanizing look at an era of our history most often glorified and mythologized. Despite my earlier reading, I still found this book eye-opening. We should all look honestly at our history, shouldn’t we? In my opinion it makes us more humane and tolerant in the present, and much wiser.

Anyone who is fond of early American history or social history, or is doing genealogy in early New England should find this book enlightening. Apparently it was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. It's now out in paperback. ( )
  avaland | Jul 7, 2017 |
Review of: New England Bound: Slavery and Colonization in Early America, by Wendy Warren
by Stan Prager (6-26-16)


Early on in New England Bound: Slavery and Colonization in Early America, a telling story is related that dates back to 1638, not even two decades removed from the Mayflower, of an English colonist near Boston who owned three enslaved Africans – two women and one man – that he sought to turn into breeding stock. When one of the females refused, he ordered the male slave to rape her in an attempt to impregnate her. The rape victim went out of her way to report what had occurred to another Englishman nearby, who in his written account of their conversation seemed to show some sympathy; however, his very next journal entry was a humorous description of his encounter with a wasp. [p7-8] It is clear that as property she otherwise lacked recourse under the circumstances. What does this one unusual anecdotal incident at the dawn of the colonial New England experience really tell us? It turns out that it is far more instructive than the reader might at first suspect, as Princeton University Professor Wendy Warren’s fascinating new contribution to the history of slavery in colonial North America reveals in the pages that follow.
While many fine works of history in the past several decades have rightly restored the long-overlooked role of New England in the triangle trade that was central to the growth of slavery in the colonies, little attention has been paid to slavery as it actually existed in those northern colonies prior to abolition. The standard tale is that slavery never really caught on there, largely because the region lacked the climate and the crop for the plantation agriculture it was best suited for, and as such this untenable anachronism gradually faded away. There is so much truth to that summary that few have bothered to dissect the actual slave experience while it thrived in New England, albeit on a much smaller scale than in the southern colonies and the West Indies. This neglect has badly shortchanged the historiography of the origins of human chattel slavery in colonial North America.
By moving the focal point away from the traditional emphasis upon the Chesapeake, South Carolina, and the Caribbean, Warren has surprisingly uncovered how much slavery in New England actually had in common with slavery in those other more familiar locales. The rape story she opens with is unexpectedly emblematic of the institution of African slavery in the Americas. Slave women had no rights as property, and therefore no control over their own bodies, which meant they could indeed serve as breeding stock, a financial boon in Virginia even in Jefferson’s time as slavery became less profitable in the Chesapeake while prices soared for field hands on the cotton plantations of the deep south. It also meant that they could be compelled to sexual relations with their owners, which is why, as South Carolina’s Mary Chestnut drily noted in 1861: “Like the patriarchs of old, our men live all in one house with their wives & their concubines, & the Mulattos one sees in every family exactly resemble the white children . . .” That meant of course that English common law needed to be turned on its head, so that the children of slaves were condemned to inherit the condition of perpetual servitude from their mothers, regardless of whether their fathers were slave or free. This was codified in Virginia in 1662 as Partus sequitur ventrem but Warren reminds us that it was already clearly understood as such in Massachusetts in 1638. [p156]
Interestingly, Warren also reveals that a 1690 Connecticut law mandating a curfew for “Negroes” managed to presage portions of the slave codes popular in the south by several decades. Massachusetts adopted a similar ordinance. [p201] The ambivalence towards the cruelties inherent to slavery is nevertheless also evident. When it became clear that owners were freeing slaves when they became too old or infirm to profitably toil as units of labor, Connecticut passed a law in 1702 directing slave-owners to care for elderly slaves, whether or not they had been freed, something otherwise left to arbitrary custom in the south. [p176] But apparently those in New England were not immune to the cruel and unusual punishments inflicted upon wrongdoers who happened to be African slaves: Increase Mather chillingly reports that in 1681 the enslaved Maria, convicted or arson and murder, was burned alive at the stake. [p199] Regardless of geography, slaves were often underfed, and sometimes resorted to theft for sustenance. In Connecticut in 1699, a slave who stole “a bisket” on the Sabbath suffered the medieval punishment of thirty lashes and a brand to the forehead. [p211] Whipping and branding became quite common in the Antebellum south. Also echoing another common practice in the south, Warren reports that in 1698 hunting dogs were employed to track down a “Negro.” [p207-08] Warren reminds us that Amerindians were also enslaved, although this was much less widespread, but tellingly a 1697 broadside seeking a runaway Native American slave also neatly anticipates the runaway slave advertisements later so common in newspapers below the Mason-Dixon. [p212]
It is in her coverage of Amerindian slavery that Warren falls short, if only because she seems to promise more than she delivers. The slavery of Native Americans, who were often sold to the West Indies, is a little-known element of early Americana and probably deserves a book-length treatment of its own. Given the scant number of pages Warren devotes to the topic, she might have best simply left it alone. Yet, this is perhaps only a quibble when one considers how well the author succeeds in demonstrating that slavery was indeed integral to all geographies of the English colonies and was shockingly similar in its elemental form both north and south. That New England always seemed to harbor a certain sense of guilt about the immorality of slavery –and that it eventually acted to bring this heinous practice to an end – perhaps mitigates some of its culpability in perpetrating this great evil, yet by no means can that serve as an excuse to overlook or forgive its deep complicity in it. Every student of the history of the institution of slavery and of early American history would benefit from reading Warren’s fine book.

My review of New England Bound: Slavery and Colonization in Early America, by Wendy Warren, is live on my book blog https://regarp.com/2016/06/26/review-of-new-england-bound-slavery-and-colonizati... ( )
1 stem Garp83 | Jun 26, 2016 |
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"Based on new evidence, Warren links the growth of the northern colonies to the Atlantic slave trade, demonstrating how New England's economy derived its vitality from the profusion of slave-trading ships coursing through its ports. Warren documents how Indians were systematically sold into slavery in the West Indies and reveals how colonial families like the Winthrops were motivated not only by religious freedom but also by their slave-trading investments. New England Bound punctures the myth of a shining 'City on a Hill,' forcefully demonstrating that the history of American slavery can no longer confine itself to the nineteenth-century South."--Publisher's Web site.

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