From the revered historian-winner of nearly every award given in his field-the long-awaited conclusion of his magisterial three-volume history of slavery in Western culture that has been more than fifty years in the making.
David Brion Davis is one of the foremost historians of our time, and in this final volume in his monumental trilogy on slavery in Western culture he offers highly original, authoritative, and penetrating insight into what slavery and emancipation meant to Americans. He explores how the Haitian revolution terrified and inspired white and black Americans respectively, and offers a commanding analysis of the complex and misunderstood significance of “colonization”-the project to move freed slaves back to Africa-to members of both races and all political persuasions. Davis vividly portrays the dehumanizing impact of slavery, as well as the generally unrecognized importance of freed slaves to abolition. And he explores the influence of religion on American ideas about emancipation. Above all, he captures the ways in which America wrestled with the knotty problem of moving forward into an age of emancipation. This is a landmark work: a brilliant conclusion to one of the great works of American history.