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Chapter 7 reassesses our understanding of the social history of naval crews, by looking at their members’ degrees of geographical displacement. Being foreign ‘by provenance’, a transnational immigrant or refugee, conferred completely different weight and meaning to the terms of service: wages and victuals were evaluated by comparison with other fleets, and pensions and family remittances were only possible for those resident within British administrative reach. This chapter then reframes the historiographical debate on naval living and pay standards, situating the Navy in a transnational seafaring labour market. Some motivations for enlistment also elude the relatively neat dichotomy between ‘volunteer’ and ‘pressed man’ that has dominated British naval historiography: being ‘loaned’ by another monarch, or enslaver; escaping a British war prison, or enslavement; exile and contested loyalties. These personal circumstances only become visible when we look at Navy crews as ‘motley crews’, social and cultural mixtures of mobile and uprooted individuals often transcending the traditional image of the British ‘Jack Tar’, and very different from the modern model of citizen-serviceman. Labels of foreignness based on birthplace, subjecthood, or cultural difference were easily bypassed by naval efficiency and manpower maximisation, but the material aspects of social and geographical displacement were not.
One of the most ambitious ruptures inaugurated by punk was the break with previous historical continuities: ‘No Future’ urged youths to reimagine current and potential opportunities, but it also declared the past invalid for contemporary developments. Yet, despite such rhetoric, punk in West Germany looked back to Krautrock for inspiration and influence. From bands as diverse as S.Y.P.H., der Plan, D.A.F., die Krupps, and others, German punks turned to Can, Neu!, Faust, Tangerine Dream, and Kraftwerk – and the engineering talents of Conny Plank – to help them develop ‘new’ sounds, rhythms, and lyrics. Krautrock is often dismissed as irrelevant to German musical developments, drawing more interest abroad than back home in Germany. Except, as the case of punk indicates, both musically and practically, Krautrock deeply influenced punk efforts at pioneering new German popular musical advances. By examining the continuities and ruptures between Krautrock and German punk, this chapter shows how the former was a critical influence on later German musical developments, and how punk drew on past musical antecedents as they revolutionised German popular music and sought to emancipate German society.
It rained on the first day of December in 1838. This was a day to remember. Across the Cape Colony the yoke of forced labour had been lifted from the almost 40,000 inhabitants who had formerly been classified as slaves. They were now free.
It had been a long road to freedom. When the Dutch first settled the Cape in the mid-seventeenth century the Atlantic slave trade was expanding. As we discussed in Chapter 11, hundreds of thousands of Africans were being shipped across the Atlantic by Portuguese, British, French and Dutch traders and sold to settlers in the New World. Because of the profitability of the trade, the rivalry between these slave-trading nations was intense. It would be this rivalry that would bring the first shipment of Angolan slaves to the Cape.
The shift of responsibility from the state and public authorities to the individual and the local level is one of the most common critiques of resilience policies. Individuals are portrayed as self-responsible entrepreneurs of their own protection. This article proposes a more nuanced reading of this process by arguing that resilience also entails an emancipatory potential. Drawing on an analysis of the German disaster management system and its structural marginalisation of care-dependent people, the article discusses the potential of resilience to make so far neglected needs visible. This visibilisation is the precondition for the recognition and, subsequently, the societal negotiation of the various needs and resources. Recognition and material redistribution may then be the yardstick for assessing the legitimacy of a shift of responsibilities that rests on the appropriate consideration of power, privileges, and abilities of the respective referent object of responsibility. Taking up the Frankfurt School's tradition of immanent critique, security scholars should not restrict themselves to exercise the necessary critique of problematic resilience policies, but engage in carving out how resilience can contribute to freeing rather than burdening the (precarious) individual.
Chapter 12 of Earthopolis: A Biography of Our Urban Planet continues the book’s exploration of cities’ role as creators and creations of the age of revolution. The revolution in Paris gave a boost to feminist movements in many Atlantic cities, movements for the emancipation of Jews that opened the gates of Europe’s ghettos, and the movement to abolish slavery. It visits colonial cities and plantations in French Saint-Domingue to follow the most radical revolution of the era – the uprising of enslaved people that resulted in the independence of a black republic of Haiti. After Napoleon Bonaparte seized power in Paris, using his armies to spread populist dictatorships to other European capitals and re-impose slavery in the Americas, he gave new impetus to abolitionism in Britain and the United States while destabilizing the centuries-old webs of imperial power that radiated from Madrid and Lisbon to Mexico City, Lima, and Rio de Janeiro. French revolutionary ideas inspired leaders based in the numerous spaces across Iberian America identified as “liberal” cities to cut those ties and found new nation states.
In this chapter, changing attitudes toward Jews in the countries of Western and Central Europe are discussed, beginning with the early fight for equal rights in the latter part of the 18th century, and continuing up to the First World War. The rise of new forms of anti-Jewish sentiment and ideology during this era is described, including the Romantic-Conservative rejection of Jewish participation in the life of bourgeois society, Jews’ definition as foreigners within the emerging nations, and, finally, their designation as a separate, inferior race – all constituting aspects of a modern form of antisemitism that grew parallel to the process of Jewish integration in contemporary society and culture.
Via petitions for freedom, addresses to children, and writings about religious deliverance, Black authors of the first decade of the nation’s founding expressed hope and encouragement for a free future beyond themselves. Both early Black literary and emancipation efforts contributed to a project of imagining and producing early Black futures. Forms of intergenerational address reached beyond any individual author’s scope to speculate about the future and to address the actual Black children whom they acknowledged as part of their communities, among their potential readers, and as would-be beneficiaries of their work. When we consider print technologies among the larger scope of Black technoculture and theological discourse alongside other notions of the speculative, we can understand early Black community, literature, and generational address as a form of (proto-)Afrofuturism. The fullest understanding of Black literary sociality is generational in scale, extending Black print from producing Black community to imagining Black futurity. Attention to early African American literature’s future gesturing also allows us to regard later scholarly interest in literary “firsts” with an eye not only to our contemporary construction and reconstruction of literary canons but also to account for early Black writers’ most hopeful literary visions.
Between 1750 and 1800, writers of African descent drew on oral and written traditions to create literature that expressed their desires for freedom, equality, and a future for themselves and their children. Moved and shaped by transitional events ranging from the forced migration of millions of Africans to enslavement in the Americas to revolutions that shook and transformed the British colonies, Saint-Domingue, and France, they developed cultural productions that articulated their longings, supported their communities, and impacted the rapidly shifting sociopolitical environments in which they lived. Like Phillis Wheatley, who publicly declared her impatience of oppression in a letter to Rev. Samson Occum on the eve of the American Revolution, they were compelled to resist enslavement, choose their own racial affiliations, and assert their agency by writing themselves into the metanarratives that marginalized or omitted them.
In Chapter 7, the author pinpoints the diverse strategies of resistance and agency employed by filhas de criação throughout the life course. She suggests that their resistance to racial, gender, and class domination, much like their captivity, occurs on multiple levels, including through their affective performances, their manipulation of the family ideology, escape, subterfuge, and their reinterpretation and rejection of certain family relationships. By organizing these resistance strategies based on women’s status at the time of the interview (those who escaped and severed ties, those who moved out but remain attached to their adoptive families, and those who plan to live with their families until they die), the author illustrates how resistance and emancipation exist at all levels of family embeddedness and are enacted in ways that allow filhas de criação to find their own sense of freedom.
In Santiago, in Cuba’s far east, a region known to be the cradle of radicalism on the island, peasant communities of African descent laid a distinctive path to emancipation during the nineteenth century. Afro-descendant peasantries did not rely on liberal-abolitionist ideologies of universal freedom as a primary reference point in their struggle for rights. Instead, as they occupied land and pulled themselves out of slavery through manumission, fugitiveness, and unrest, they negotiated their rights through a colonial legal framework that allowed room for local custom. As they chipped away at the institution of slavery gradually yet consistently, they also reimagined colonial racial systems before any of Cuba’s prominent nineteenth-century liberal intellectuals. This introduction provides an outline of the book's main argument and the six chapters that follow.
At some point in the fifth century ce, a series of honorific statues were erected in Stratonikeia, a major city in Caria, Asia Minor. The statues were set up to commemorate the benefactions that one Maximos did for the local community, primarily for the sake of the dispossessed (ἀκτέανοι). While the majority of the inscribed praises that accompanied the statues heaped conventionally generic praise on Maximos for his euergetism, one of the inscriptions gave a rather precise reason for the high esteem that the benefactor enjoyed in the city. When the poor (τῶν πενήτων) of Stratonikeia were hard-pressed to pay the tax of chrysargyron, Maximos stepped in three times and paid the tax on their behalf from his own resources.
The social dynamics reflected in these inscriptions seem emblematic of late antique economic and power relationships between the destitute and their benefactors, as well as the Christian ideology of patronage, earthly and divine, that I discuss below.
In nineteenth-century Santiago de Cuba, the island of Cuba's radical cradle, Afro-descendant peasants forged freedom and devised their own formative path to emancipation. Drawing on understudied archives, this pathbreaking work unearths a new history of Black rural geography and popular legalism, and offers a new framework for thinking about nineteenth-century Black freedom. Santiago de Cuba's Afro-descendant peasantries did not rely on liberal-abolitionist ideologies as a primary reference point in their struggle for rights. Instead, they negotiated their freedom and land piecemeal, through colonial legal frameworks that allowed for local custom and manumission. While gradually wearing down the institution of slavery through litigation and self-purchase, they reimagined colonial racial systems before Cuba's intellectuals had their say. Long before residents of Cuba protested for national independence and island-wide emancipation in 1868, it was Santiago's Afro-descendant peasants who, gradually and invisibly, laid the groundwork for emancipation.
This chapter looks at the tensions between slavery and freedom in the three slave societies of Cartagena, Antioquia, and Popayán, probing the ways in which specific officials and slaveholders interpreted and used the specter of slave insurrection in light of their own interests and local conflicts. In contrast to the stereotypes of insubordinate slaves, the chapter maps out slaves’ culture of expectation. Underpinned by a dynamic grapevine transmitting rumors and tales, this culture of expectation included notions about the end of slavery and discussions on tactics to improve working conditions or accelerate the coming of freedom. Many enslaved communities told hopeful fables of peaceful liberation and legally recognized emancipation. The rumor that a merciful monarch had decreed collective freedom reappeared periodically. For some, the hope was based on manumission promises by masters. Others thought that God would end slavery and punish the masters. Many slaves hoped that they could become law-abiding members of the body politic (paying taxes, obeying magistrates and priests, and living in their own towns) after emancipation.
Krystyna Duniec and Agata Adamiecka-Sitek question the seemingly incontestable values and lineages of standard historiographies that are foundationally patriarchal and evidence how theatre profited from the trade in women’s bodies, and Duniec notes that through theatre we can chart the move from marginalization to empowered presence for LGBTQ groups. Duniec focuses on the interwar period, which she interprets as a time of tremendous innovation in theatre practices that remain/repeat today. She notes that through theatre we can chart the move from marginalization to empowered presence for LGBTQ groups. The Polish People’s Republic, as Adamiecka-Sitek shows, proclaimed gender equality but in reality reproduced bourgeois gender relations that excluded women from empowered positions in theatre institutions. She then charts how women’s narratives emerged outside of a ‘homosocial’ order built on fraternal ties that she traces from the establishment of public theatre.
Key moments of the American Civil War and the 1899–1902 South African War and their tragic immediate aftermaths remain powerful features of national memory in both countries. Over the past century, vengeful politicians and ideologues in both have transformed them into formidable stock-in-trade. Second-, third-, and fourth-hand accounts of the alleged churlish manner of the victorious armies, especially soldiers of African descent, were made into combustible timber for reactionary political campaigns. The perceived cruel turns of fate have made their way into literature, stage, and screen. The two wars afforded people of various races and social conditions opportunity to act upon their conceptions of a just society, albeit amid terrible carnage and loss. They also underscored the permanence of the industrial transformation of both countries. In the decades following these two wars most of the black and white agrarian populations discovered that state and agrarian elites had cynically manipulated and then extinguished their aspirations. Most often, for black agrarians, violence was the preferred instrument to pursue desired outcomes. Reconstruction in the American South was a paradox. The Civil War emancipated the slaves but left the entire South, especially upland cotton regions, economically backward. In Louisiana, especially, politicized violence to coerce black labor was pervasive. After the South African War, white violence against rural black people was widespread. Lord Milner’s Reconstruction Administration was more concerned to bring South Africa’s gold mines back into production than to stem the violence. The low-intensity violence of the postwar countryside became the backland route to apartheid.
Frederick Douglass’s correspondence emerges in the wake of his self-emancipation and occupies a singular place in nineteenth-century American letters. It is a body of work unprecedented in its scope and its capacity to provide an anchor to the networks of activism in which Douglass wielded such influence. It marks a turn in African American letters in which the epistolary is repurposed as a tool of emancipation and of radical archival practice. His correspondence mobilizes the letter as an instrument of emancipation, able to establish political community and map cartographies of freedom that challenged the limitations placed by the United States on African American autonomy. At the same time, his letters provide a glimpse behind the scenes of a life lived to a great extent in the public eye, confirming the importance of family and home as concrete realities, and of domains of intimacy normally kept out of historical sight.
To Frederick Douglass, the Civil War was a holy fight for freedom fought through speeches and writings on three main subjects. First, slavery was sin and abolition was the will of God. Second, abolition would require violence. Third, African Americans merited full inclusion within the United States. Douglass’s analyses are marked by both moral clarity and capacity for contradiction, which allowed him to convey equal and opposite truths about a Civil War as revolutionary as it was incomplete. Both the moral clarity and the ability to encompass opposites grew directly from Douglass’s understanding of God – merciful and wrathful – at work in the war. While Douglass’s embrace of violence and conviction of God’s will might give us pause, Douglass teaches that things can be opposite and true – a war can both transform a nation and fall short – at the same time.
Freedom's Captives is a compelling exploration of the gradual abolition of slavery in the majority-black Pacific coast of Colombia, the largest area in the Americas inhabited primarily by people of African descent. From the autonomous rainforests and gold mines of the Colombian Black Pacific, Yesenia Barragan rethinks the nineteenth-century project of emancipation by arguing that the liberal freedom generated through gradual emancipation constituted a modern mode of racial governance that birthed new forms of social domination, while temporarily instituting de facto slavery. Although gradual emancipation was ostensibly designed to destroy slavery, she argues that slaveholders in Colombia came to have an even greater stake in it. Using narrative and storytelling to map the worlds of Free Womb children, enslaved women miners, free black boatmen, and white abolitionists in the Andean highlands, Freedom's Captives insightfully reveals how the Atlantic World processes of gradual emancipation and post-slavery rule unfolded in Colombia.