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Contesting Slavery: The Politics of Bondage and Freedom in by John Craig Hammond

By John Craig Hammond

Recent scholarship on slavery and politics among 1776 and 1840 has totally revised historians’ realizing of the matter of slavery in American politics. Contesting Slavery builds at the better of that literature to reexamine the politics of slavery in progressive the USA and the early republic.

The unique essays accrued right here learn the progressive period and the early republic all alone phrases to provide clean insights into the politics of slavery earlier than 1840. the gathering forces historians to reconsider the a number of meanings of slavery and antislavery to a huge array of american citizens, from unfastened and enslaved African american citizens to proslavery ideologues, from northern farmers to northern woman reformers, from minor social gathering functionaries to political luminaries corresponding to Henry Clay.

The essays additionally delineate the a number of methods slavery sustained clash and consensus in neighborhood, nearby, and nationwide politics. in spite of everything, Contesting Slavery either establishes the abiding presence of slavery and sectionalism in American political existence and demanding situations historians’ long-standing assumptions concerning the position, that means, and value of slavery in American politics among the innovative and antebellum eras.

Contributors: Rachel wish Cleves, college of Victoria * David F. Ericson, George Mason collage * John Craig Hammond, Penn nation collage, New Kensington * Matthew Mason, Brigham younger collage * Richard Newman, Rochester Institute of know-how * James Oakes, CUNY Graduate heart * Peter S. Onuf, collage of Virginia * Robert G. Parkinson, Shepherd collage * Donald J. Ratcliffe, college of Oxford * Padraig Riley, Dalhousie college * Edward B. Rugemer, Yale college * Brian Schoen, Ohio collage * Andrew Shankman, Rutgers collage, Camden * George William Van Cleve, collage of Virginia * Eva Sheppard Wolf, San Francisco country University

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Extra resources for Contesting Slavery: The Politics of Bondage and Freedom in the New American Nation

Sample text

I use the word ‘‘antiabolitionist’’ here advisedly, for too often the literature conflates opposition to abolition with a truly proslavery position. 36. Wolf, Race and Liberty in the New Nation, xii, 225. 37. Mason, Slavery and Politics in the Early American Republic, 38–39 (quotations at 38). 38. , 39. 39. , chap. 2. 40. The Papers of Daniel Webster, ed. Charles M. : University Press of New England, 1974), 1:135–37. 41. Mason, Slavery and Politics in the Early American Republic, chap. 2 (quotation at 58).

23. , 38, 46–55, 68–72. 24. , 91–95, 130–41, 170–71, 195 (quotation at 131); White, Somewhat More Independent, 27–28. 25. Gellman, Emancipating New York, 39, 45, 76. 26. John Craig Hammond, Slavery, Freedom, and Expansion in the Early American West (Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2007), passim, especially 11, 43; Mason, Slavery and Politics in the Early American Republic, 6–7, 25–26, 28. 27. Hammond, Slavery, Freedom, and Expansion in the Early American West, 76–95. 28. , 76–149 (quotations at 98, 135, 121, 78).

In the face of this scholarship, one is left to wonder if the ideas of the American Revolution made any significant or lasting contribution to antislavery in the new American nation. That contribution was at once more and less than the historiography suggests. On the one hand, Revolutionary ideas clearly nourished antislavery activism in the United States. ∞≥ And it seems extraordinarily cynical to dismiss the constant reference to those ideals within antislavery discourse as mere window dressing.

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