Freedom's Debt: The Royal African Company and the Politics of the Atlantic Slave Trade, 1672-1752 - Published for the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Williamsburg, Virginia (Paperback)
  • Freedom's Debt: The Royal African Company and the Politics of the Atlantic Slave Trade, 1672-1752 - Published for the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Williamsburg, Virginia (Paperback)
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Freedom's Debt: The Royal African Company and the Politics of the Atlantic Slave Trade, 1672-1752 - Published for the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Williamsburg, Virginia (Paperback)

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£31.50
Paperback 272 Pages / Published: 30/07/2016
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In the years following the Glorious Revolution, independent slave traders challenged the charter of the Royal African Company by asserting their natural rights as Britons to trade freely in enslaved Africans. In this comprehensive history of the rise and fall of the RAC, William A. Pettigrew grounds the transatlantic slave trade in politics, not economic forces, analyzing the ideological arguments of the RAC and its opponents in Parliament and in public debate. Ultimately, Pettigrew powerfully reasons that freedom became the rallying cry for those who wished to participate in the slave trade and therefore bolstered the expansion of the largest intercontinental forced migration in history.
Unlike previous histories of the RAC, Pettigrew's study pursues the Company's story beyond the trade's complete deregulation in 1712 to its demise in 1752. Opening the trade led to its escalation, which provided a reliable supply of enslaved Africans to the mainland American colonies, thus playing a critical part in entrenching African slavery as the colonies' preferred solution to the American problem of labor supply.

Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press
ISBN: 9781469629858
Number of pages: 272
Weight: 413 g
Dimensions: 235 x 155 x 20 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
Pettigrew's work is a much needed examination of the political and economic underpinnings of the early years of the British slave trade.--History Today


Cogently argued.--Jrnl of Southern History


[A] carefully researched book.--Journal of American History


Accessible and very interesting. . . . An admirable account of how the [Royal African Company] and its rival British slave-trading enterprises shaped, and were shaped by, the politics of the wider society they inhabited.--Enterprise & Society


A deeply researched, persuasive study on the political disputes between the RAC and what the author calls the independent slave traders who opposed the RAC's monopoly and were victorious by 1712 in deregulating Britain's slave trade.--H-Net


Pettigrew's fascinating and well-researched book is an essential contribution to the history of the Anglo-American slave trade.--Journal of Early American History


Well researched and coherently organized...convincing, compelling, and important...Freedom's Debt does for English history something like what Edmund S. Morgan did for American history in American Slavery, American Freedom: The Ordeal of Colonial Virginia--William and Mary Quarterly


[Freedom's Debt] will be a standard source for specialists for many years to come.--Journal of Interdisciplinary History

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