Slave Nation: How Slavery United The Colonies And Sparked The American Revolution

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9781402204005: Slave Nation: How Slavery United The Colonies And Sparked The American Revolution
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"A radical, well-informed, and highly original reinterpretation of the place of slavery in the American War of Independence."-David Brion Davis, Yale University

In 1772, the High Court in London brought about the conditions that would end slavery in England by freeing a black slave from Virginia named Somerset. This decision began a key facet of independence.

Slave Nation is a fascinating account of the role slavery played in the drawing of the United States Constitution and in shaping the United States. At the Constitutional Convention, the South feared that the Northern states would leave the Convention over the issue of slavery. In a compromise, the Southern states agreed to slavery's prohibition north of the Ohio River, resulting in the Northwest Ordinance. This early national division would continue to escalate, eventually only reaching resolution through the Civil War.

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From the Back Cover:

This chilling history describes how a decision in the High Court of London in 1772 freeing a British slave so terrified the southern slaveholders that ironically they joined the American Revolution and the battle for freedom to ensure the preservation of slavery itself. Slave Nation offers a radically different view of the profound role that slavery played in the founding of the Republic through the creation of the Constitution.

“Not your typical history of the American Revolution. Rather than revel in the glorious outburst of liberty that is so often stressed to schoolchildren, civil rights lawyers Alfred and Ruth Blumrosen show that the preservation of plantation slavery played just as important a role.”
- Charles Ealy, Dallas Morning News

“A radical, well-informed and highly original reinterpretation of the place of slavery
in the American War of Independence.”
- David Brion Davis, Yale University

“A startling and necessary book, one of the most important publications on the topic of black history to appear this season.”
- Booklist, STARRED REVIEW

“Provocative...Their reassessment of the centrality of slavery during the period
is an intriguing one...”
- Publishers Weekly

“The Blumrosens have uncovered powerful circumstantial evidence that a major trigger
of the American Revolution was something far more fundamental than such a relatively minor irritant as British taxation.”
- Theodore J. St. Antoine, Degan Professor Emeritus of Law, University of Michigan

“A fascinating, concise and compelling argument that has long been obscured in America: that our legendary Revolution was fought for the protection of slavery and that that tragic blunder led directly to the central tragedy of civil war over the rights of Blacks. In breathtakingly clear and succinct prose, the Blumrosens lead the reader through a historical and political minefield, judiciously and brilliantly. And we should thank them for it.”
- Barbara Chase-Riboud, Carl Sandburg Prize-winning poet and novelist

About the Author:

Alfred Blumrosen is the Thomas A. Cowan Professor of Law at Rutgers University in New Jersey, specializing in Labor and Employment law, with a long history in enforcement of Civil Rights. The late Ruth Blumrosen was an adjunct professor of Law at Rutgers Law School and also has a history in Civil Rights compliance.

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