Slavery and the Politics of Place: Representing the Colonial Caribbean, 1770-1833 (Cambridge Studies in Romanticism 108)
By: Elizabeth A. Bohls (author)Hardback
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Geography played a key role in Britain's long national debate over slavery. Writers on both sides of the question represented the sites of slavery - Africa, the Caribbean, and the British Isles - as fully imagined places and the basis for a pro- or anti-slavery political agenda. With the help of twenty-first-century theories of space and place, Elizabeth A. Bohls examines the writings of planters, slaves, soldiers, sailors, and travellers whose diverse geographical and social locations inflect their representations of slavery. She shows how these writers use discourses of aesthetics, natural history, cultural geography, and gendered domesticity to engage with the slavery debate. Six interlinked case studies, including Scottish mercenary John Stedman and domestic slave Mary Prince, examine the power of these discourses to represent the places of slavery, setting slaves' narratives in dialogue with pro-slavery texts, and highlighting in the latter previously unnoticed traces of the enslaved.
Elizabeth A. Bohls, Associate Professor of English at the University of Oregon, is author of Women Travel Writers and the Language of Aesthetics, 1716-1818 (Cambridge, 1995), Romantic Literature and Postcolonial Studies (2013) and co-editor with Ian Duncan of Travel Writing, 1700-1830 (2005).
Introduction: captive spaces; 1. The planter picturesque; 2. Stedman's Tropics: the mercenary as naturalist; 3. Colonial history and Atlantic geography; 4. Equiano's politics of place: from roots to routes; 5. At home with the 'Blackies': Janet Schaw and Maria Nugent; 6. A long way from home: the history of Mary Prince; Bibliography.
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- ID: 9781107079342
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