By Robin Blackburn
In 1770 a handful of eu international locations governed the Americas, drawing from them a circulation of goods, either daily and unique. a few and a part million black slaves, imprisoned in plantation colonies, toiled to supply the sugar, espresso, cotton, ginger and indigo craved via Europeans. by way of 1848 the most important platforms of colonial slavery have been swept away both by means of independence activities, slave revolts, abolitionists or a few mixture of all 3. How did this happen?
Robin Blackburn’s historical past captures the complexity of a innovative age in a compelling narrative. every so often colonial rule fell whereas slavery flourished, as occurred within the South of the U.S. and in Brazil; in other places slavery ended yet colonial rule remained, as within the British West Indies and French Windwards. yet in French St. Domingue, the longer term Haiti, and in Spanish South and significant the USA either colonialism and slavery have been defeated. This tale of slave liberation and American independence highlights the pivotal position of the “first emancipation” within the French Antilles within the 1790s, the parallel activities of slave resistance and metropolitan abolitionism, and the contradictory implications of slaveholder patriotism.
The dramatic occasions of this epoch are tested from an unforeseen vantage element, exhibiting how the torch of anti-slavery handed from the medieval communes to dissident Quakers, from African maroons to radical pirates, from Granville Sharp and Ottabah Cuguano to Toussaint L’Ouverture, from the black Jacobins to the Liberators of South the US, and from the African Baptists in Jamaica to the Revolutionaries of 1848 in Europe and the Caribbean.