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October 14 , 2008

Slave Culture: Nationalist Theory and the Foundations of Black America


Twenty-five years after its original publication, Oxford has released a new edition of Sterling Stuckey's ground-breaking study, Slave Culture. A leading cultural historian and authority on slavery, Stuckey explains how different African peoples interacted on the plantations of the South to achieve a common culture. He argues that at the time of emancipation, slaves still remained essentially African in culture, a conclusion that has had profound implications for theories of black liberation and race relations in America. Drawing evidence from the anthropology and art history of Central and West African cultural traditions and exploring the folklore of the American slave, Stuckey reveals an intrinsic Pan-African impulse that contributed to the formation of the black ethos in slavery. He presents fascinating profiles of such nineteenth-century figures as David Walker, Henry Highland Garnet, and Frederick Douglass, as well as detailed examinations into the lives and careers of W.E.B. Du Bois and Paul Robeson in this century. The second edition, which includes a Foreword by historian John Stauffer, will reintroduce Stuckey's masterpiece to a wider audience. Stukey provides a new introduction that looks at the life of the book and the impact it has had on the field of African-American scholarship, as well as how the field has changed in the 25 years since its original publication.
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