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This is a remarkable book!! Baptist weaves individual slaves' stories into an exposition of the economics driving slavery's expansion. He makes a powerful argument that slavery was pivotal in the development of US and world capital, and was actually accelerating at the time of the Civil war.
The us of accounts by specific enslaved people helps to illustrate larger structural changes in slavery's development but helps you understand the toll these played on people's lives. It also helps to understand various cultural developments and slavery,s lasting legacy.
I wish I had read this in college! It would have made the civil war make much more sense.
21 of 21 people found this review helpful
This book should have been written 150 years ago and taught in schools instead of the gloss on slavery still being studied in American classrooms. It is the story of slavery as the engine of the great American economy, the story of profit as generated by systematized kidnapping, torture, murder, and oppression. It is a compelling combination of personal narratives, economic analysis, and political development. And it's true: what I thought I knew about the Civil War and its causes was only half of the telling.
18 of 18 people found this review helpful