By Stephanie M. H. Camp
Fresh scholarship on slavery has explored the lives of enslaved humans past the watchful eye in their masters. construction in this paintings and the research of house, social relatives, gender, and tool within the previous South, Stephanie Camp examines the standard containment and flow of enslaved males and, particularly, enslaved ladies. In her research of the flow of our bodies, items, and knowledge, Camp extends our attractiveness of slave resistance into new arenas and divulges an incredible and hidden tradition of opposition.
Camp discusses the a number of dimensions to acts of resistance that may in a different way seem to be little greater than suits of mood. She brings new intensity to our knowing of the lives of enslaved girls, whose our bodies and houses have been unavoidably political arenas. via Camp's perception, truancy turns into an act of pursuing own privateness. unlawful events ("frolics") turn into an expression of physically freedom. And bondwomen who received revealed abolitionist fabrics and published them at the partitions in their slave cabins (even in the event that they couldn't learn them) turn into the delicate agitators who encourage extra overt acts.
The tradition of competition created by way of enslaved women's acts of daily resistance helped foment and maintain the extra noticeable resistance of fellows of their person acts of operating away and within the collective motion of slave revolts. finally, Camp argues, the Civil struggle years observed innovative swap that have been within the making for many years.
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Extra info for Closer to Freedom: Enslaved Women and Everyday Resistance in the Plantation South
Paternalism was also inﬂuenced by the early nineteenth-century ideal of a√ectionate family life and placed possessive and demanding fathers at the head of the plantation household. Planters desired the a√ection and allegiance of their underlings, imagining an intimacy with their slaves that patriarchs had not. This sense of intimacy partnered with a strong sense of license, and paternalist planters often intervened in the lives of their slaves. With paternalism came great attention to black bodily minutiae; nutrition, dress, hygiene, bodily functions, pleasure, and family and intimate relations all became the targets of planter meddling.
Still, the participation of every slaveholder was unnecessary, for southern communities organized slave patrols to uphold the principles of restraint, whether or not individual slave owners subscribed to them with the same depth of feeling as their neighbors. With the shift to paternalist techniques of social control among slaveholding elites in the decades after the Revolution came increased policing of illicit slave behavior. The consolidation of patrol activity during the nineteenth century was a part of the violence and coercion that buttressed planter power and complemented paternalism.
Compared with the number of women among fugitives, women’s rates of truancy are striking. ∞∂ The di√ering behaviors of men and women at Clermont plantation are similar to those in other, relatively more opaque but still instructive plantation records. ∞∏ Clearly, at least on these three plantations with distinctive records of truancy, women made up a greater proportion of truants than they did of runaways. These plantation records come from two lower South states: South Carolina and Mississippi.
Closer to Freedom: Enslaved Women and Everyday Resistance in the Plantation South by Stephanie M. H. Camp