Encyclopedia of Antislavery and Abolition [2 volumes]: Greenwood Milestones in African American History

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9780313331428: Encyclopedia of Antislavery and Abolition [2 volumes]: Greenwood Milestones in African American History
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The emergence of a sophisticated antislavery ideology and the rise of organized opposition to slavery in the Atlantic World in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries represented nothing less than one of the great intellectual and social revolutions in the history of the world. An institution which by the early eighteenth century was near axiomatically accepted as necessary, useful, and thoroughly in accord with Judaeo-Christian tenets and virtues and which profoundly informed the lives of millions of people had by the mid-nineteenth century come increasingly to be viewed as the chief vector of evil and the Devil in the world, the very quintessence of evil as some called it, and the chief repository of all that was socially, politically, and especially economically archaic and stagnant. This encyclopedia is organized around three principal concerns: the illustration and explication of the various forms of antislavery and its emergence as an organized movement; the immediate precipitants of abolition and the processes of its passage; and the enactment of emancipation and its consequences. While the earliest expressions of antislavery may have only comprised one or a few isolated voices, the antislavery most commonly reviewed here is that animated by a systematic and ardent opposition to slavery and intended to mobilize large numbers of people to attack and end the institution. A wide variety of people and organizations nurtured and extended this antislavery: religious figures, political economists, slaves, sailors, artisans, missionaries, planters, captains of slave ships, democratic enthusiasts, and others were all involved along with the various organizations-secular, religious, or otherwise-with which they were associated. Antislavery was by no means exclusively or even principally the work of an intellectual elite and the force of all, from the lowly and unlearned to the privileged and prominent, is represented. The presence of slavery continued to be attacked in the contracting Ottoman Empire in the early twentieth century, in Liberia in the 1930s, in Saudi Arabia in the mid-twentieth century, and even in the latter years of the century in countries like Sudan, Pakistan, India, and others in Southeast Asia.

The entries have a worldwide focus, covering antislavery movements and important developments in slavery abolition and slave emancipation in many places around the globe. Other entries cover individuals, groups, events, documents, and organizations related to the history of abolition and emancipation over the last two centuries. Coverage also address a wide range of topics, issues, and ideas related to the broad topic of ending historical systems of slavery and human bondage.

Besides over 400 cross-referenced entries, most of which conclude with lists of additional readings, the encyclopedia also includes an Introduction tracing the history of abolition and emancipation, a selected general bibliography, a guide to related topics, numerous illustrations, and a detailed subject index.

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The emergence of a sophisticated antislavery ideology and the rise of organized opposition to slavery in the Atlantic World in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries represented nothing less than one of the great intellectual and social revolutions in the history of the world.

About the Author:

Peter Hinks earned his PhD in American history from Yale University in 1993. He has taught at Yale University, Bennington College, Grinnell College, and Hamilton College. He is the author of the award-winning book, To Awaken My Afflicted Brethren: David Walker and the Problem of Antebellum Slave Resistance. He works professionally in public history and has recently co-curated the new exhibit at the Historical Society of the Town of Greenwich, Intimate Strangers: Slavery and Freedom in Fairfield County, 1700-1850. Dr. Hinks is the senior historian for a major exhibit on slavery and its demise in New York City, Africans in New York, 1620-1865, which opened at the New York Historical Society in October 2005. With the late Professor John Blassingame and Professor Jack McKivigan, he co-edited Frederick Douglass' first two autobiographies, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass and My Bondage and My Freedom.

John McKivigan is the Mary O'Brien Gibson Professor of United States History at Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis. He is the editor of the Frederick Douglass Papers and author of The War against Proslavery Religion: Abolitionism and the Northern Churches, 1830-1865 (1984). He also is the coeditor of The Historical Moment: Biographical Essays on American Character and Regional Identity (1994), with Randall M. Miller, Sectionalism and Religion: Essays on the Slavery Controversy in the American Churches (1998), with Mitchell Snay, and Antislavery Violence: Sectional, Racial, and Cultural Conflict in Antebellum America (1999), with Stanley Harrold. McKivigan is the recipient of many fellowships and grants.

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