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Saltwater Slavery A Middle Passage from Africa to American Diaspora

ISBN-10: 0674030680
ISBN-13: 9780674030688
Edition: 2007
List price: $23.00 Buy it from $5.57
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Description: This bold, innovative book promises to radically alter our understanding of the Atlantic slave trade, and the depths of its horrors. Stephanie E. Smallwood offers a penetrating look at the process of enslavement from its African origins through the  More...

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Book details

List price: $23.00
Copyright year: 2007
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publication date: 12/15/2008
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 288
Size: 5.50" wide x 8.25" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 0.836
Language: English

This bold, innovative book promises to radically alter our understanding of the Atlantic slave trade, and the depths of its horrors. Stephanie E. Smallwood offers a penetrating look at the process of enslavement from its African origins through the Middle Passage and into the American slave market. Smallwood's story is animated by deep research and gives us a startlingly graphic experience of the slave trade from the vantage point of the slaves themselves. Ultimately, Saltwater Slavery details how African people were transformed into Atlantic commodities in the process. She begins her narrative on the shores of seventeenth-century Africa, tracing how the trade in human bodies came to define the life of the Gold Coast. Smallwood takes us into the ports and stone fortresses where African captives were held and prepared, and then through the Middle Passage itself. In extraordinary detail, we witness these men and women cramped in the holds of ships, gasping for air, and trying to make sense of an unfamiliar sea and an unimaginable destination. Arriving in America, we see how these new migrants enter the market for laboring bodies, and struggle to reconstruct their social identities in the New World. Throughout, Smallwood examines how the people at the center of her story--merchant capitalists, sailors, and slaves--made sense of the bloody process in which they were joined. The result is both a remarkable transatlantic view of the culture of enslavement, and a painful, intimate vision of the bloody, daily business of the slave trade.

Liam Matthew Brockey is Associate Professor of History, Michigan State University.Stephanie E. Smallwood teaches History at the University of Washington, Seattle.

Introduction
The Gold Coast and the Atlantic Market for People
Turning African Captives into Atlantic Commodities
The Political Economy of the Slave Ship
The Anomalous Intimacies of the Slave Cargo
The Living Dead aboard the Slave Ship at Sea
Turning Atlantic Commodities into American Slaves
Life and Death in Diaspora
Conclusion: Saltwater Slavery in Memory and History
Notes
Index

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