Becoming African in America

Author: James Sidbury
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780198043225
Format: PDF, Kindle
Download Now
The first slaves imported to America did not see themselves as "African" but rather as Temne, Igbo, or Yoruban. In Becoming African in America, James Sidbury reveals how an African identity emerged in the late eighteenth-century Atlantic world, tracing the development of "African" from a degrading term connoting savage people to a word that was a source of pride and unity for the diverse victims of the Atlantic slave trade. In this wide-ranging work, Sidbury first examines the work of black writers--such as Ignatius Sancho in England and Phillis Wheatley in America--who created a narrative of African identity that took its meaning from the diaspora, a narrative that began with enslavement and the experience of the Middle Passage, allowing people of various ethnic backgrounds to become "African" by virtue of sharing the oppression of slavery. He looks at political activists who worked within the emerging antislavery moment in England and North America in the 1780s and 1790s; he describes the rise of the African church movement in various cities--most notably, the establishment of the African Methodist Episcopal Church as an independent denomination--and the efforts of wealthy sea captain Paul Cuffe to initiate a black-controlled emigration movement that would forge ties between Sierra Leone and blacks in North America; and he examines in detail the efforts of blacks to emigrate to Africa, founding Sierra Leone and Liberia. Elegantly written and astutely reasoned, Becoming African in America weaves together intellectual, social, cultural, religious, and political threads into an important contribution to African American history, one that fundamentally revises our picture of the rich and complicated roots of African nationalist thought in the U.S. and the black Atlantic.

The Black Urban Atlantic in the Age of the Slave Trade

Author: Jorge Canizares-Esguerra
Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press
ISBN: 0812208137
Format: PDF, ePub
Download Now
During the era of the Atlantic slave trade, vibrant port cities became home to thousands of Africans in transit. Free and enslaved blacks alike crafted the necessary materials to support transoceanic commerce and labored as stevedores, carters, sex workers, and boarding-house keepers. Even though Africans continued to be exchanged as chattel, urban frontiers allowed a number of enslaved blacks to negotiate the right to hire out their own time, often greatly enhancing their autonomy within the Atlantic commercial system. In The Black Urban Atlantic in the Age of the Slave Trade, eleven original essays by leading scholars from the United States, Europe, and Latin America chronicle the black experience in Atlantic ports, providing a rich and diverse portrait of the ways in which Africans experienced urban life during the era of plantation slavery. Describing life in Portugal, Brazil, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Africa, this volume illuminates the historical identity, agency, and autonomy of the African experience as well as the crucial role Atlantic cities played in the formation of diasporic cultures. By shifting focus away from plantations, this volume poses new questions about the nature of slavery in the sixteenth to nineteenth centuries, illustrating early modern urban spaces as multiethnic sites of social connectivity, cultural incubation, and political negotiation. Contributors: Trevor Burnard, Mariza de Carvalho Soares, Matt D. Childs, Kevin Dawson, Roquinaldo Ferreira, David Geggus, Jane Landers, Robin Law, David Northrup, João José Reis, James H. Sweet, Nicole von Germeten.

Black Prometheus

Author: Jared Hickman
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190272589
Format: PDF, Mobi
Download Now
How did an ancient mythological figure who stole fire from the gods become a face of the modern, lending his name to trailblazing spaceships and radical publishing outfits alike? How did Prometheus come to represent a notion of civilizational progress through revolution--scientific, political, and spiritual--and thereby to center nothing less than a myth of modernity itself ? The answer Black Prometheus gives is that certain features of the myth--its geographical associations, iconography of bodily suffering, and function as a limit case in a long tradition of absolutist political theology--made it ripe for revival and reinvention in a historical moment in which freedom itself was racialized, in what was the Age both of Atlantic revolution and Atlantic slavery. Contained in the various incarnations of the modern Prometheus--whether in Mary Shelley's esoteric novel, Frankenstein, Denmark Vesey's real-world recruitment of slave rebels, or popular travelogues representing Muslim jihadists against the Russian empire in the Caucasus-- is a profound debate about the means and ends of liberation in our globalized world. Tracing the titan's rehabilitation and unprecedented exaltation in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries across a range of genres and geographies turns out to provide a way to rethink the relationship between race, religion, and modernity and to interrogate the Eurocentric and secularist assumptions of our deepest intellectual traditions of critique.

Becoming African Americans

Author: Clare Corbould
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674032620
Format: PDF, ePub
Download Now
Africa has always played a role in black identity, but it was in the tumultuous period between the two world wars that black Americans first began to embrace a modern African American identity. Throwing off the legacy of slavery and segregation, black intellectuals, activists, and organizations sought a prouder past in ancient Egypt and forged links to contemporary Africa. Their consciousness of a dual identity anticipated the hyphenated identities of new immigrants in the years after World War II, and an emerging sense of what it means to be a modern American.

African Atlantic Cultures and the South Carolina Lowcountry

Author: Ras Michael Brown
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139561049
Format: PDF, ePub
Download Now
African-Atlantic Cultures and the South Carolina Lowcountry examines perceptions of the natural world revealed by the religious ideas and practices of African-descended communities in South Carolina from the colonial period into the twentieth century. Focusing on Kongo nature spirits known as the simbi, Ras Michael Brown describes the essential role religion played in key historical processes, such as establishing new communities and incorporating American forms of Christianity into an African-based spirituality. This book illuminates how people of African descent engaged the spiritual landscape of the Lowcountry through their subsistence practices, religious experiences and political discourse.

A Companion to African American Literature

Author: Gene Andrew Jarrett
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1118438787
Format: PDF, ePub
Download Now
"A master archivist and historian of African American literature, Gene Jarrett has assembled a compelling new collection of essays for this necessary addition to the study of African American writing and thought. The volume offers a comprehensive survey of the African American canon, but also goes in new directions, giving fresh emphasis to the earliest writing of African Americans as well as to the exciting field of Latino/-a writing in the African Diaspora. This is a field-defining collection." Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Harvard University.

Dislocating Race and Nation

Author: Robert S. Levine
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
ISBN: 9780807887882
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
Download Now
American literary nationalism is traditionally understood as a cohesive literary tradition developed in the newly independent United States that emphasized the unique features of America and consciously differentiated American literature from British literature. Robert S. Levine challenges this assessment by exploring the conflicted, multiracial, and contingent dimensions present in the works of late eighteenth- and nineteenth-century American and African American writers. Conflict and uncertainty, not consensus, Levine argues, helped define American literary nationalism during this period. Levine emphasizes the centrality of both inter- and intra-American conflict in his analysis of four illuminating "episodes" of literary responses to questions of U.S. racial nationalism and imperialism. He examines Charles Brockden Brown and the Louisiana Purchase; David Walker and the debates on the Missouri Compromise; Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville, and Hannah Crafts and the blood-based literary nationalism and expansionism of the mid-nineteenth century; and Frederick Douglass and his approximately forty-year interest in Haiti. Levine offers critiques of recent developments in whiteness and imperialism studies, arguing that a renewed attention to the place of contingency in American literary history helps us to better understand and learn from writers trying to make sense of their own historical moments.

African American Religions 1500 2000

Author: Sylvester A. Johnson
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 0521198534
Format: PDF, Docs
Download Now
A rich account of the long history of Black religion from the dawn of Western colonialism to the rise of the national security paradigm.

American Lazarus

Author: Joanna Brooks
Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand
ISBN: 0195160789
Format: PDF, Docs
Download Now
This book explores the means by which the very first Black and Indian authors rose up to transform their communities and the course of American literary history. It argues that the origins of modern African-American and American Indian literatures emerged at the revolutionary crossroads of religion and racial formation.

Remapping Citizenship and the Nation in African American Literature

Author: Stephen Knadler
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1135247188
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
Download Now
Through a reading of periodicals, memoirs, speeches, and fiction from the antebellum period to the Harlem Renaissance, this study re-examines various myths about a U.S. progressive history and about an African American counter history in terms of race, democracy, and citizenship. Reframing 19th century and early 20th-century African-American cultural history from the borderlands of the U.S. empire where many African Americans lived, worked and sought refuge, Knadler argues that these writers developed a complicated and layered transnational and creolized political consciousness that challenged dominant ideas of the nation and citizenship. Writing from multicultural contact zones, these writers forged a "new black politics"—one that anticipated the current debate about national identity and citizenship in a twenty-first century global society. As Knadler argues, they defined, created, and deployed an alternative political language to re-imagine U.S. citizenship and its related ideas of national belonging, patriotism, natural rights, and democratic agency.