Fugitive movements : commemorating the Denmark Vesey affair and Black radical antislavery in the Atlantic world /

"In 1822, White authorities in Charleston, South Carolina, learned of plans among the city's enslaved population to lead an armed antislavery rebellion. Among the leaders was a free Black carpenter named Denmark Vesey. After a brief investigation and what many considered a dubious trial, V...

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Bibliographic Details
Other Authors / Creators:Spady, James O'Neil, 1968- editor.
Format: eBook Electronic
Language:English
Imprint: Columbia, South Carolina : The University of South Carolina Press, [2022]
Series:Carolina lowcountry and the Atlantic world.
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Online Access:Click here for full text at Project MUSE
Description
Summary:"In 1822, White authorities in Charleston, South Carolina, learned of plans among the city's enslaved population to lead an armed antislavery rebellion. Among the leaders was a free Black carpenter named Denmark Vesey. After a brief investigation and what many considered a dubious trial, Vesey and 35 others were convicted of attempted insurrection and hanged. To this day, activists, politicians, writers, and scholars have questioned and debated the historical significance of the conspiracy, its commemoration, and the integrity of the archival records left behind. James O'Neil Spady has collected essays by 14 outstanding scholars, who reframe the Vesey affair as part of the broader development of Black Radical antislavery movements in the Atlantic World. Essays focus on Vesey and several other rebellion events, including the forcible rescue of African Americans being trafficked within the United States. Manisha Sinha, James L. and Shirley A. Draper Chair in American History at the University of Connecticut and author of The Slave's Cause: A History of Abolition, provides the foreword"--
The essays in this book commemorate the 1822 Charleston Antislavery Movement and offer a new interpretation of the 1822 events. Taken together, the essays also suggest new ways of understanding how commemorations of Black antislavery rebellion have contributed to Black resistance to racism since emancipation, with an emphasis on Black movements and cultural production during and after enslavement. Three catalytic or motivating factors that motivated Black antislavery resistance and its commemoration emerge: (1) the presence of a "common wind" of information circulating the Atlantic, (2) African and diasporic ideas of freedom independent of Euro-American inspirations, and (3) locally rooted relationships and communities of both free Black and enslaved people. The history of Black antislavery rebellion intertwines circum-Atlantic flow and local production. The broad U.S., Caribbean, and West African geographic scope of the book reflects this reality and resonates with Vesey's own national and international frame of reference. The volume's essays highlight two overarching themes, antislavery resistance and its commemoration. A first set of essays considers the Vesey movement itself, the roots of the movement in the Atlantic world, and the problematic and prejudicial trials. These essays suggest that the Vesey affair had both Caribbean and African contexts. The 1822 events emerge as more than a "slave conspiracy" in Charleston, South Carolina; they were a social movement of both enslaved and free Black people. Movement participants were aware of U.S. and Atlantic-wide currents, and their movement as a whole contributed to the larger struggle. These essays are followed by a second set of essays looks at the longer cultural memory of Black antislavery, demonstrating the continuing resonance of the themes covered in earlier sections and how they continue to shape contemporary understandings not only of our collective past, but also how culture and identity are formed in the present. "All black freedom movements are fugitive. This has been true of slave rebellion, religious revivals, labor strikes, Civil Rights, black power liberation, and #BlackLivesMatter. Black fugitivity, Tina Campt has argued, is a refusal to "stay in one's proper place." Fugitives cross boundaries, unauthorized, and are always running. The fugitive chooses to live for the possibility of an "unbounded" life and refuses to be subject to law that negates or exoticizes black lived experience. Fugitivity therefore is a status precariously placed between possibility and danger: even when they were the omnipresent majority population where chattel slavery was still legal in the early nineteenth century, the enslaved remain unrecognized as people or citizens. Free and enslaved, blackness was (and is) treated as suspect in a white-supremacist society. There is no prospect for belonging as equals. There is no possibility of escape other than temporarily and incompletely. Even when free, fugitivity continues to structure the lives of propertyless black workers, makes them targets for street harassment and carriers of intergenerational traumas.""--
In 1822, White authorities in Charleston, South Carolina, learned of plans among the city's enslaved population to lead an armed antislavery rebellion. Among the leaders was a free Black carpenter named Denmark Vesey. After a brief investigation and what many considered a dubious trial, Vesey and 35 others were convicted of attempted insurrection and hanged. To this day, activists, politicians, writers, and scholars have questioned and debated the historical significance of the conspiracy, its commemoration, and the integrity of the archival records left behind.<br> <br> James O'Neil Spady has collected essays by 14 outstanding scholars, who reframe the Vesey affair as part of the broader development of Black Radical antislavery movements in the Atlantic World. Essays focus on Vesey and several other rebellion events, including the forcible rescue of African Americans being trafficked within the United States.<br> <br> Manisha Sinha, James L. and Shirley A. Draper Chair in American History at the University of Connecticut and author of The Slave's Cause: A History of Abolition, provides the foreword.
Item Description:Description based on online resource; title from digital title page (viewed on January 20, 2022).
Physical Description:1 online resource (xiii, 307 pages) : illustrations, maps
Bibliography:Includes bibliographical references and index.
ISBN:1643362658
1643362666
9781643362656
9781643362663
Author Notes:James O'Neil Spady, associate professor of American history at Soka University of America, is the author of Education and the Racial Dynamics of Settler Colonialism in Early America: Georgia and South Carolina, 1700-1820.