Planning and writing and extended piece of research
Slavery: Slave Narratives AM103 David Lambert 16 November 2015 Humanist vs quantification [A]cademic scholarship on transatlantic slavery can
schematically be divided between two opposed theoretical camps: first, what may be called the humanist and narrative historians who emphasize the human experience of slavery and the trade slave and whose focus is frequently the gradual abolition of slavery; and, second, the quantification historians who take a statistical and macrohistorical approach and avoid the human aspect, which they associate with a lack of critical distance.
Raphael Hrmann and Gesa Mackenthun (eds), Human Bondage in the Cultural Contact Zone (2010), p. 11. Quantitative vs qualitative research 'Quantitative research is, as the term suggests, concerned with the collection and analysis of data in numeric form. It tends to emphasize relatively large-scale and representative sets of data, and is often, falsely in our view, presented or perceived as being
about the gathering of "facts". Qualitative research, on the other hand, is concerned with collecting and analysing information in as many forms, chiefly non-numeric, as possible. It tends to focus on exploring, in as much detail as possible, smaller numbers of instances or examples which are seen as being interesting or illuminating, and aims to achieve "depth" rather than "breadth".' L. Blaxter, C. Hughes and M. Tight, How to Research, 1996 , p. 61.
Enslaved Africans disembarked in the Americas, 1501-1866 Destination Number British Caribbean
French Caribbean Spanish Caribbean Dutch Caribbean Danish Caribbean Caribbean sub-total Brazil Spanish Mainland North America
The Americas - total 2,318,252 1,120,216 805,424 444,728 108,998 4,797,618
4,864,374 487,488 388,747 10,538,227 % of Caribbean subtotal % of total for the
Americas 48.32% 23.35% 16.79% 9.27% 2.27% 100.00%
22.00% 10.63% 7.64% 4.22% 1.03% 45.53% 46.16%
4.63% 3.69% 100.00% Olaudah Equiano, or, Gustavus Vassa, the African Lecture structure
The slave narrative: Influences The rise of anti-slavery sentiment Types of slave narratives Olaudah Equianos Interesting Narrative Later forms: WPA slave narratives Neo-slave narratives
Influences on the slave narrative: captivity narratives Influences on the slave narrative: petitionary appeals Influences on the slave narrative: religious
tracts Olaudah Equiano, or, Gustavus Vassa, the African Influences on the slave narrative: anti-slavery politics
Rise of anti-slavery sentiment The British abolitionist movement emerged from the 1770s because of 1. The evangelical revival, within and beyond the Anglican Church 2. The Enlightenment (a belief in progress) 3. The development of Romanticism (ideas of the noble savage)
4. The growth of free-tradism Influences on the slave narrative: anti-slavery politics Early slave narratives (1770s-1820s): Tales of religious redemption
Early slave narratives (1770s-1820s): Tales of religious redemption Later slave narratives (from 1820s): Antislavery propaganda Later slave narratives (from 1820s): Antislavery propaganda
Later slave narratives (from 1820s): Antislavery propaganda Non-anglophone slave narratives The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano (1789)
The stench of the hold while we were on the coast was so intolerably loathsome, that it was dangerous to remain there for any time, and some of us had been permitted to stay on the deck for the fresh air; but now that the whole ship's cargo were confined together, it became absolutely pestilential. The closeness of the place, and the heat of the climate, added to the number in the ship, which was so crowded that each had scarcely room to turn himself, almost suffocated us. This
produced copious perspirations, so that the air soon became unfit for respiration, from a variety of loathsome smells, and brought on a sickness among the slaves, of which many died, thus falling victims to the improvident avarice, as I may call it, of their purchasers. This wretched situation was again aggravated by the galling of the chains, now become insupportable; and the filth of the necessary tubs, into which the children often fell, and were almost suffocated. The shrieks of the women, and the groans of the dying, rendered the whole a
scene of horror almost inconceivable. The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, Or Gustavus Vassa, pp 51-52 (1794; 9th edition). The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano (1789) Themes: Appeals to the audience
Details the violence of slavery, including sexual abuse Separation of enslaved families and marriages Challenges contemporary racist stereotypes Details impact of slavery on enslaved people and owners Journey from slavery to freedom parallels that from heathenism to Christianity
13 editions in first five years after publication. Republished New York in 1791, and translated WPA slave narratives The Works Progress Administration (WPA) was part of the New Deal Its Federal Writers Project interviewed surviving ex-slaves during 1936-38 across seventeen states
Slave Narrative Collection consists of 2300+ interviews with former slaves Most are first-person accounts of slave life and the respondents reactions to bondage from early 1860s and before Interview with George Johnson, Mound Bayou, Mississippi, September 1941
Interviewer: I want you to tell me how you got your name? Mr George Johnson: I got my name from President Jeff Davis. He was president of the Southern Confederacy. He owned my grandfather and my father. Brought them from Richmond, Virginia. My grandfather was a blacksmith. My father was a young kid, wasn't grown. And my father had learned how to write a little bit in Richmond, Virginia, before they brought him down here. Grandpa used to keep chalk in his shop to mark ??? things; and my father take
a piece put in his pocket and pass in front master Jeff's house he write on the sidewalk. And so one morning master Jeff come by and saw that writing on the walk, he go back and ask the cook, [old lady named (?)] Meli, Meliza: There's writing on the sidewalk, who writing out there? Neo-slave narratives [T]hese texts illustrate the centrality of the history and the
memory of slavery to our individual, racial, gender, cultural, and national identities. Further, they provide a perspective on a host of issuestrauma and traumatic memories; the legacy of slavery (and other atrocities) for subsequent generations; the interconnectedness of constructions of race and gender; the relationship of the body to memory; the agency of the enslaved. Valerie Smith, 'Neo-slave narratives' in The Cambridge
Companion to the African American Slave Narrative (2007), pp 168-9. Neo-slave narratives Neo-slave narratives (Neo-)slave narratives on film
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