The literature on women enslaved around the world has grown rapidly in the last ten years, evidencing strong interest in the subject across a range of academic disciplines. Until Women and Slavery, no single collection has focused on female slaves who-as these two volumes reveal-probably constituted the considerable majority of those enslaved in Africa, Asia, and Europe over several millennia and who accounted for a greater proportion of the enslaved in the Americas than is customarily acknowledged.
Women enslaved in the Americas came to bear highly gendered reputations among whites-as "scheming Jezebels," ample and devoted "mammies," or suffering victims of white male brutality and sexual abuse-that revealed more about the psychology of enslaving than about the courage and creativity of the women enslaved. These strong images of modern New World slavery contrast with the equally expressive virtual invisibility of the women enslaved in the Old-concealed in harems, represented to meddling colonial rulers as "wives" and "nieces," taken into African families and kin-groups in subtlely nuanced fashion.
Women and Slavery presents papers developed from an international conference organized by Gwyn Campbell.
Volume 1 Contributors
Richard B. Allen
Philip J. Havik
Elizabeth Grzymala Jordan
Martin A. Klein
George Michael La Rue
Paul E. Lovejoy
Kirsten A. Seaver
Publisher: Ohio University Press
Number of pages: 392
Weight: 612 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 26 mm
"The geographic and methodological diversity of the chapters constitute one of the collection's salient appeals.... The two volumes challenge us to reconsider women and slavery and appreciate the strongly gendered nature of servitude in world history."
"Women and Slavery: Africa, the Indian Ocean World, and the Medieval North Atlantic offers an exciting addition to the scholarship on gender and slavery. Students and professors alike will find this volume provocative and useful in examining the role of women in slavery and slave trades.... This collection, and its sister publication, Women and Slavery: The Modern Atlantic, by the same editors, work masterfully together and could serve as the basis for an entire course on women and slavery."
"All these contributions broaden and deepen the historian's craft as well as our understanding of the gendered nature of slave-life in each instance. We learn of queens and thralls struggling to survive, of the lives of slave-washerwomen, and the significance of `maturity' among female slaves.... Measured in terms of (Sue Miers's) own career, this volume shows just what a long way the historiography of Africanist slavery has come and where it yet needs to go."
"I believe these essays have an audience among anyone interested not only in the intersecting histories of slavery and women, but also those who are intrigued more generally by the historian's craft." -- Susan E. O'Donovan, coeditor of Freedom: A Documentary History of Emancipation, 1861-1867 and author of Slavery's Legacies: Becoming Free in the Cotton South
"Women and Slavery (Volumes 1 & 2) makes a significant contribution to our understanding of slavery in a global context" and "showing the centrality of women to slave systems around the world."