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The Reckoning

The Reckoning

Author Robin Blackburn
Publisher Verso Books
Publication Date 2024-02-20
Section New Hardcover - Nonfiction / US History
Type New
ISBN 9781804293416

"Tremendously impressive, the result of a lifetime of learning. Historical writing at its best." —Marcus Rediker, author of The Slave Ship A history of 19th century slavery in the US, Brazil and Cuba from a critically acclaimed historian of slavery in the Americas The Reckoning offers the first rounded account of the rise and fall of the Second Slavery—largescale plantation slavery in nineteenth-century Brazil, Cuba and the US South. Robin Blackburn shows how a fusion of industrial capitalism and transatlantic war and revolution turbo-charged racial oppression and the westwards expansion of the United States. Blackburn identifies the new territories, new victims and new battle cries of the Second Slavery. He emphasises the role of financial credit in the spread of plantation agriculture, traces the connections between slavery and the US Civil War, and asks why Brazil threw off Portuguese rule whereas Cuba became one of imperial Spain’s final outposts. The Second Slavery faced a fearful reckoning in the 1860s and after when the supposedly invincible Slave Power was defied by extraordinary cross-class, international and interracial alliances. Blackburn narrates the abolitionists’ difficult victory over the enslavers, while documenting the racial backlash which brought on Jim Crow and cheated the freedmen and freedwomen of the fruits of their struggle.

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