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Details of The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism

The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism
Exact title of book
The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism
Book author
Edward E. Baptist
ISBN
9780465002962
Publisher
Basic Books
Published
Sep 09, 2014
Language
English
Format
PDF, FB2, EPUB, MOBI
Pages
528
File size (in PDF)
4752 kB

Some brief overview of book

Americans tend to cast slavery as a pre-modern institutionthe nations original sin, perhaps, but isolated in time and divorced from Americas later success. But to do so robs the millions who suffered in bondage of their full legacy. As historian Edward Baptist reveals in The Half Has Never Been Told, the expansion of slavery in the first eight decades after American independence drove the evolution and modernization of the United States.

In the span of a single lifetime, the South grew from a narrow coastal strip of worn-out tobacco plantations to a continental cotton empire, and the United States grew into a modern, industrial, and capitalist economy. Until the Civil War, Baptist explains, the most important American economic innovations were ways to make slavery ever more profitable. Through forced migration and torture, slave owners extracted continual increases in efficiency from enslaved African Americans.

Thus the United States seized control of the world market for cotton, the key raw material of the Industrial Revolution, and became a wealthy nation with global influence. Told through intimate slave narratives, plantation records, newspapers, and the words of politicians, entrepreneurs, and escaped slaves, The Half Has Never Been Told offers a radical new interpretation of American history. It forces readers to reckon with the violence at the root of American supremacy, but also with the survival and resistance that brought about slaverys endand created a culture that sustains Americas deepest dreams of freedom.

About book author

E. Baptist is an associate professor of history at Cornell University. Author of the award-winning Creating an Old South, he grew up in Durham, North Carolina.

He lives in Ithaca, New York. ew from a narrow coastal strip of worn-out tobacco plantations to a continental cotton empire, and the United States grew into a modern, industrial, and capitalist economy. Until the Civil War, Baptist explains, the most important American economic innovations were ways to make slavery ever more profitable. Through forced migration and torture, slave owners extracted continual increases in efficiency from enslaved African Americans.

Thus the United States seized control of the world market for cotton, the key raw material of the Industrial Revolution, and became a wealthy nation with global influence. Told through intimate slave narratives, plantation records, newspapers, and the words of politicians, entrepreneurs, and escaped slaves, The Half Has Never Been Told offers a radical new interpretation of American history. It forces readers to reckon with the violence at the root of American supremacy, but also with the survival and resistance that brought about slaverys endand created a culture that sustains Americas deepest dreams of freedom.

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