Taking into account the major recent studies, this volume presents an updated analysis of the life of the black slave–his African heritage, culture, family. The Slave Community. Plantation Life in the Antelbellum South. By John W. Blassingame (New York: Oxford University Press,. 1 ix plus pp. Illustrated. In The Slave Community, John Blassingame develops an interpreta- tion of slave personality and culture in the antebellum U.S. South, draw- ing heavily on.
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A Response to Critics” appears in the volume. While he admits that “slave interviews rival autobiographies in their revelations about the internal dynamics of bondage, Blassingame contends that historians have “deliberately ignored” autobiographies of ex-slaves, particularly the fugitive slave narratives.
Kilson believes that Blassingame ultimately failed in his analysis because “his intellectual integration of social and psychological orientations has yet to be fully achieved.
A black man, they reasoned, who loved his wife and his children was less likely to be rebellious or to run away than would a ‘single’ slave.
Lovisa von Burghausen — Olaudah Equiano c. Slave marriages were illegal in southern states, and slave couples were frequently separated by slaveowners through sale. In a review in the William and Mary QuarterlyGeorge Mullin is especially critical of Blassingame’s use of psychology, stating that Blassingame “reduc[es] slave behavior and culture to a question of roles and psychological characteristics”. Still, Blassingame’s conclusions, methodology, and sources received substantial criticism from historians.
According to this theory, “a person’s behavior is generally determined by the socially defined roles or the behavioral patterns expected of him in certain situations. A good book about the south and having lived there all my lift I thought it was a fair discussion.
The Slave Community
According to Blassingame, Johh culture was not entirely removed from slave culture through the process of enslavement and “was much more resistant to the bludgeons that was slavery than historians have hitherto suspected. Jewitt England — United States. I enjoyed reading the insights shared by the author.
Most of the male authors had done a large part of their work before the development of women’s jonh as a discipline, and even the most sensitive were hampered by a paucity of sources and by unfamiliarity with the questions feminists would soon raise.
Stampp in The Peculiar Institution: Choose your communlty or region Close. Engerman complains that the book is not “written by or for economists ” and makes “limited use of economic analysis”.
The Slave Community: Plantation Life in the Antebellum South
The prose is as good as a novel, but the terrors of the institution sear into your soul. He argues that slaves had instead been infantilized, blassingaem “made” into Sambos, by the brutal treatment received at the hands of slaveowners and overseers.
In this sense, the slave writers present a participant observers’ comments on the larger slave society.
In The Slave CommunityBlassingame uses psychologist Harry Stack Sullivan ‘s interpersonal theory to interpret the behavior of slaves on antebellum plantations.
He argues that variations present in plantations, overseers, and masters gave the slave “much more freedom from restraint and more independence and autonomy than his institutionally defined role allowed. There are many references to the work of Bruno Bettelheim, some of whose work has yhe been discredited, and I think modern psychology would disagree with a lot of the conclusions. Genovese, “Toward a Psychology of Slavery: He never blassinggame receiving schooling blassingzme any significance, yet his autobiography is written in a grammatically correct and formal manner.
Nikki rated it liked it May 16, Historians criticized the use of slave narratives that were seen as unreliable and biased. Overall, I would recommend to read this book on anybody who would like to learn more about Slavery and what it was like.
Blassingame addresses the historiography of slavery published between and in the revised edition. Engs, University of Pennsylvania. Thd was hard making jphn through this book. Sociological Justice Donald Black. Blassingame concludes, “Uncritical use of the interviews will lead almost inevitably to a simplistic and distorted view of the plantation as a paternalistic institution where the chief feature of life was mutual love and respect between masters and slaves.
He notes that arguments against the use of these autobiographies used by historians revolve around reliability: The Scholars Respond This page was last edited on 30 Juneat In these ” invisible churches “, slaves could discuss freedom, liberty, and the judgment of God against slaveowners. Engs, University of Pennsylvania “It is doubly welcome, both for its intrinsic worth in describing slavery as it must have been for those inside and for its meaning and scholarship In The Slave CommunityBlassingame argues that “historians have never systematically explored the life experiences of American slaves.
When children understood that they were enslaved usually after their first whippingparents dissuaded angry urges to run away or seek revenge. While ministers preached obedience in the presence of slabe slaveowners and other whites, slaves often met in secret, “invisible” commumity unsupervised by whites. Since its publication in and revision inThe Slave Community has influenced subsequent historiographical works on slavery in the United States.
Instead, the fugitives’ plantations are peopled with the same range of heroes and villains, black and white, which one generally finds in the human race. We have had very largely a male-dominated literature about slavery.
The Slave Community – Paperback – John W. Blassingame – Oxford University Press
Toward a Human Geography of U. Taking into account the major recent studies, this volume presents an updated analysis of the life of the black slave–his African heritage, culture, family, acculturation, behavior, religion, and personality.
Fyf Fafi rated it it was amazing Aug 29, In reality, many black preachers consciously, or sub-consciously, used traditional aspects of black culture to adapt a conventional religious message to their audiences. Elkins compares the process to the infantilization of Jews in Nazi concentration camps.
Pages to import images to Wikidata Featured articles. Return to Book Page. It’s a much more complete view of a horrible time in history that shouldn’t be glossed over or forgotten, and I strongly recommend it.