History: Slavery and American Freedom

Topics: Slavery, Atlantic slave trade, Slavery in the United States Pages: 3 (1104 words) Published: September 11, 2013
Summary I

American Slavery, American Freedom written by Edmund S. Morgan captures the history of Virginia while keeping focusing on the social and political elements that uplifted the way of slavery. With the focus on Virginia, the book also probes the central paradox of American history: "how a people could have developed the dedication to human liberty and dignity exhibited by the leaders of the American Revolution and at the same time have developed and maintained a system of labor that denied human liberty and dignity every hour of the day (pg.4-5)". The key to the paradox is presented in Virginia, the nation's largest slave state and primary source of the ideology and leadership. Also the source of conditions which made slavery and freedom possible was discovered through the state of Virginia by the political and social history being discovered. According to Morgan's preface, enslavement took more hold on the nation's freedom than one may conclude. "Indeed the freedom of free, the growth of freedom experienced in the American Revolution, depended more than we like to admit on the enslavement of more the 20 percent of us at that time." According to the book, "The rise of liberty and equality in America had been accompanied by the rise of slavery (pg.4)”. Throughout book one of American Slavery, American Freedom the author discusses the start of the poor relationship between the American Indians and the Virginia colonist, and the increase of tobacco as an important crop grown by the slaves of Virginia. "It was Virginia slave who grew most of tobacco that helped buy American independence (pg.5-6)". The hostility began at the ill-fated Roanoke colony among the England colonist and Indians. Unlike the founders of Roanoke, Virginia refuse to depend on the Indians for subsistence and when the king placed the Virginians in charge, they could not capture the thought of the Indians being a part of the colony as well as slaves, and therefore suffered a labor...
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