Tag: slavery

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On May 15, 1905, a Maraka noble in modern-day Mali killed a slave who was part of a broader slave exodus that helped bring the end to official slavery in the French African colonies. This can serve as a moment in the larger transformation of slave societies in west Africa that led to the widespread […]
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The daily horrors of the slave trade are just too much for us to quite comprehend. Here is a new discovery: In the early 15th century, Portuguese explorers like Henry the Navigator began sailing to Africa, bringing back both goods and enslaved people. A new archaeological study of more than 150 skeletons dumped in Lagos, […]
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Prison Strike, Prison Slavery

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In General
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On August 30, 2018
I have a piece in the New York Times on the prison strike and the historical context of white coercion of black labor that has never ended. The Civil War may have ended chattel slavery, but the 13th Amendment had a fatal flaw, allowing for an exception from free labor for the incarcerated. Almost immediately, […]

Slavery, Post-1865

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On August 14, 2018

One of the biggest weaknesses of any constitutional amendment is that of the 13th Amendment, allowing for unpaid labor by prisoners. Whether its writers thought through the potential repercussions of

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I have no idea what bizarre world Kanye West is in, but the historian Tera Hunter speaks some real truth over the supposed “choice” that some freed slaves made to return to bondage. It is 1857, and Kanye, a carpenter, has finally saved up enough money to buy his freedom from Massa West. Trouble is, […]

Barracoon

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On April 30, 2018

Zora Neale Hurston is one of the greatest literary and anthropologist treasures in American history, despite her dying completely forgotten and in poverty in 1960. Her 1931 novel Barracoon is finally

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