Using primary texts uploaded, choose two pro-slavery and two anti-slavery documents and write a 750-word essay that demonstrates how the proponents and opponents of slavery used the analytical concepts that framed this course when making their arguments (Mobility, Democracy, Capitalism, and Difference). You should identify the authors’ main point, and utilizing two of the four analytical concepts, examine how they defended their position. Your paper should conclude by explaining why some contemporaries of slavery may have found certain arguments compelling, while others found them offensive (to conclude effectively, you will need to explain the historical context in which these texts were written, based on what you have read in the Keene text and learned in class discussion). NB: you are not expected to incorporate all of the sources listed, just those relevant to your approach to the paper prompt. Your paper must be submitted as a MS Word document, which can be attached and uploaded by clicking the red text, above.
Please note that the proslavery texts reflect the racism found in many quarters of nineteenth-century America. As historians, it is only right that we reject these views as we analyze how these writers constructed their defense of slavery. Other researchers have noted that the proslavery appeal to racism was intended to undermine the Abolitionist efforts to put forth “all men are created equal” as the core American value (see the antislavery texts). Please beware that the level of racism seen in these documents can be shocking and disturbing to modern readers.
No secondary sources, other than the Keene text, should be integrated into this paper’s analysis.
Anti-Slavery Documents: Declaration of Sentiments, Frederic Douglass, Lincoln, Truth, Walker
Pro-Slavery Documents: Christy, Fitzhugh Sociology, Hammond, Stephens Corner, Taney