Tag slavery

The Slave Trade in the U.S. and Brazil: Comparisons and Connections

Leonardo Marques— When faced with the numbers of the transatlantic slave trade, U.S. citizens are frequently surprised by the fact that less than 400,000 enslaved Africans were carried to North America out of the more than ten million people that were disembarked by slave ships in the Americas between the

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Abolitionists are American Democracy’s Unsung Heroes

Manisha Sinha— Most Americans greeted Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew’s decision to put Harriet Tubman, the abolitionist heroine of the Underground Railroad, on the front of the twenty-dollar bill and relegate the Indian hunting President Andrew Jackson to its back with approval. The ironies abound. Fugitive slaves like Tubman most feared

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Slavery in Arabia, Demand in the West

Matthew S. Hopper— Last month, path-breaking investigative journalism—most prominently Ian Urbina’s “Outlaw Ocean” series in The New York Times—exposed tragic connections between global consumer demand and contemporary slavery. These investigations revealed how men and boys across Southeast Asia have been coerced, captured, or sold into slavery or harsh, slave-like conditions aboard

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Revolutionary Ideas in the Atlantic World

Janet Polasky— The interconnections of today’s global society are inescapable. So why should we imagine that the founding fathers dreamed of freedom in isolation? The Atlantic World had never been as tightly interconnected as at the end of the eighteenth century. Two centuries before the Arab Spring, without electronic social

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The Children of the Amistad

Benjamin N. Lawrance— March 9 marks the 174th anniversary of the Supreme Court decision U.S. v Amistad, one of the most celebrated U.S. “freedom suits.” Since the case’s conclusion in 1841, the charismatic leadership of Cinqué (Sengbe Pieh) and the rhetorical prowess of former President John Quincy Adams and others

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Sins with a Lasting Legacy

Follow @yaleRELIbooks As 2013 draws to a close, we reflect on the superlatives of the past year. Everyone is busy writing up their own “Best of 2013” lists and “Year in Review” articles. Amidst all of the reflection on our high points, we cannot escape recollections of our lows. In

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Of Africa

One night in Germany in 2009, after having given a talk that pointed out the atrocities committed on African soil by Islam and Christianity, Wole Soyinka was confronted by a young man, who loudly remarked across the entire dinner table, “Africans, you must admit, are inherently inferior. You must be,

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To London, with Love: Lost at Sea

Ivan Lett— Here in New Haven, the memory of La Amistad and its historic court trial pervades the memory of our coastline. Popular recreations of the slave ship’s story, such as the 1997 Spielberg film or the ship replica at Mystic Seaport, remind us of the horrors of slavery and

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The Hanging of Thomas Jeremiah

Not all slave owners were white. On the eve of the American Revolutionary War, South Carolina’s slave population was nearly double that of white Europeans, and while there were a still a handful of free blacks, “free” took a marginalized status in the face of color discrimination. Perhaps the richest

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Molly Rogers’ DELIA’S TEARS and More on Black Family History

This afternoon at 4:30pm, Molly Rogers, author of Delia’s Tears: Race, Science, and Photography in 19th-Century America, will be interviewed by eminent historian David Blight about her book here on Yale’s campus. The book retells the story of seven South Carolina slaves who were photographed at the request of Swiss

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