For the revolutionaries slavery represented a

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Unformatted text preview: hrough chattel slavery the world gave birth and coherence to both its joys of domesticity and to its struggles of political discontent; and with these joys and struggles, the Human was born, but not before it murdered the Black, forging a symbiosis between the political ontology of Humanity and the social death of Blacks.In his essay “To ‘Corroborate Our Claims’: Public Positioning and the Slavery Metaphor in Revolutionary America,” Peter Dorsey (in his concurrence with cultural historians F. Nwabueze Okoye and Patricia Bradley) suggests that, in mid- to late-18th century Ameri kca, Blackness was such a fungible commodity that it was traded as freely between the exploited (workers who did not “own” slaves) as it was between the un-exploited (planters who did). This was due to the effective uses to which Whites could put the Slave as both flesh and metaphor. For the Revolutionaries, “slavery represented a ‘nightmare’ that white Americans were trying to avoid” (359). Dorsey’s claim is provocative, but not unsuppor...
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This document was uploaded on 03/26/2014.

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