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Africa and Africans in the making of the…

Africa and Africans in the making of the Atlantic world, 1400-1680 (1992)

by John Thornton

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A very interesting and informative read, but quite dry. If you can make past the few few chapters, however, one might find that they are drawn in by all the data that conventional history texts seem to ignore. A must-read for anyone with an interest in colonial history! ( )
  oreo | Jun 27, 2008 |
Fine piece of research work. Thornton's thesis is that Africans were active and instrumental in the trans-Atlantic slave trade, and were not simply passive victims. He points out (against Mintz, Price, et al) that Africans in the Americas retained enough of their culture to actively participate in the development of unique and hybridized forms of culture in this region. In the process of developing his thesis Thornton provides useful details and insights into many aspects of American and Caribbean slavery, e.g. the reason coerced African labour was preferred to white indentureship. An important read for anyone interested in Caribbean history up to the period of emancipation.
1 vote Mutesa | Dec 1, 2006 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0521627249, Paperback)

This book explores Africa's involvement in the Atlantic world from the fifteenth through the eighteenth centuries. It focuses especially on the causes and consequences of the slave trade, in Africa, in Europe, and in the New World. Prior to 1680, Africa's economic and military strength enabled African elites to determine how trade with Europe developed. Thornton examines the dynamics that made slaves so necessary to European colonizers. He explains why African slaves were placed in significant roles. Estate structure and demography affected the capacity of slaves to form a self-sustaining society and behave as cultural actors. This second edition contains a new chapter on eighteenth century developments.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:20 -0400)

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