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White fathers black mothers - sexual exploitation of slave women as a measure of depths of slavery

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In general historians seem to deliberately ignored the sexual expoitation of slave women by their white owners.  In Time on the Cross this approaches the height of deliberate avoidance when, out of whole cloth, the writers create a scenario in which the owner would be better having a white mistress elsewhere than a slave mistress on the plantation.  As with much on ToC no evidence is given for this scenario. 

I can find a number of slave mistress admitted by their owners.  As well as the children who identified their white fathers.  I am trying to use this thesis as the basis for the exploitation of slavery and then, post Civil War, the perceived threat of black men.  

Comments?

 

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Hm, I'd say that people of color are often underrepressented in the work that is being produced in academia. They are underrepresented in academia as a whole. I'd say also that when they are actually being studied, it's often by "outsiders" (meaning White people studying people of color). I'm no expert on this topic, but I could give you a reference of a scholar in my city that actually studies topics related to what you've just described.

Edited by Adelaide9216

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On 4/23/2017 at 2:28 PM, godofredus said:

In general historians seem to deliberately ignored the sexual expoitation of slave women by their white owners.  In Time on the Cross this approaches the height of deliberate avoidance when, out of whole cloth, the writers create a scenario in which the owner would be better having a white mistress elsewhere than a slave mistress on the plantation.  As with much on ToC no evidence is given for this scenario. 

I can find a number of slave mistress admitted by their owners.  As well as the children who identified their white fathers.  I am trying to use this thesis as the basis for the exploitation of slavery and then, post Civil War, the perceived threat of black men.  

Comments?

 

I think that you should do more reading on the topic -- it has received serious scholarly attention for decades.

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On 4/23/2017 at 7:02 PM, Adelaide9216 said:

Hm, I'd say that people of color are often underrepressented in the work that is being produced in academia. They are underrepresented in academia as a whole. I'd say also that when they are actually being studied, it's often by "outsiders" (meaning White people studying people of color). I'm no expert on this topic, but I could give you a reference of a scholar in my city that actually studies topics related to what you've just described.

That may be true in other humanities and social sciences--I don't know since I haven't researched them--but it's not true in the field of History.  I'm a 19th century Americanist and have looked at over 100 History programs for relevant POIs in pursuit of a PhD.  What I found is that the vast majority of academic historians specializing in slavery and African-American issues are people of color.  

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It is a factual statement that people of color are underrepresented in history. For example, only 4.6% of the history PhD recipients in 2015 were black (and only 7.7% were Hispanic/Latino). The academics who study slavery and African-American issues are a minority in history as a whole.

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On 10/20/2017 at 2:58 AM, juilletmercredi said:

It is a factual statement that people of color are underrepresented in history. For example, only 4.6% of the history PhD recipients in 2015 were black (and only 7.7% were Hispanic/Latino). The academics who study slavery and African-American issues are a minority in history as a whole.

I take exception with your post. I ask: How does one define representation? How does one evaluate representation?

For decades, the great trinity of American historiography has been race, class, and gender. In the some of most "traditional" fields  diplomatic, naval, and military history, the study of race and gender certainly still have a ways to go but does this reflect under-representation or self selection or does it reflect the utilitarian nature of those fields that lead to different kinds of debates as those seen among academic-minded historians?

IRT the study of slavery and the African American experience as well as the impact of racial identity, politics, and racism in American history, it is, IMO, a bit misleading to suggest that the small number of blacks in the profession reflects the profession's interest in and commitment to those two areas of inquiry. Compare the recipients of the Bancroft Prize since 1966ish to those before that year. Compare the winners and finalists for the Pulitzer since 1978 to those before.

Look at the recently published works on the impact of notions of racial identity and their impact upon Colonial America. Examine reading lists for graduate classes in American history, shorter reviews in academic journals, the continued focus in graduate seminars on the intense debates over slavery in the 1970s, the deepening focus on the "long nineteenth century," the ever sharper criticism of Woodrow Wilson, as well as those presidents who continued what was America's longest war. 

Do all these efforts and their impact upon how academic history is practiced, learned, and taught reflect a lack of sustained, serious, and respectful attention within the profession? 

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@Sigaba You seem to have taken the first sentence of her post out of context; I think the rest of the post makes it clear what she means something different than you've responded to. When she says "people of color are underrepresented in history," she meant "people of color are underrepresented in history" as its practitioners. I don't see anywhere in her post that she claims that race is "under-represented" as an object of study in history. Rather, the statistics she cites show that she is talking about diversity in the demographics of professional academics, not in the distribution of the topics they study.

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I'd agree with what someone else said, there are actually plenty of sources about this. Fredrick Douglas definitely emphasizes the corruption of the "family" due to the rape of african american women by their white slave owners and then the babies they had (theres a specific word for it I forgot), and how that would cause problems between the husband and wife, or having brothers whipping their own brothers, etc. This is definitely something that has been explored in depth in regards to history, so I'd recommend simply more reading. Now if you are discussing current historians (say those at universities or something) and why they don't focus on it? I can't really comment on that since I'm not in the field. I just know I had to write an essay on this topic back in my undergrad, and there were definitely many sources discussing this topic. 

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@hats You are correct - I was talking about the representation of people of color as historians, in response to someone else's comment about the number of historians of color earlier.

Although I would also argue that the treatment of race in history has also not been fully represented. It may have increased and improved since the 1970s, but the achievements and contributions of people of color (especially in American history) are still mostly suppressed, especially in history that escapes academia and is disseminated to the public.

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On 11/24/2017 at 7:55 PM, chalkdust said:

They talk about it in Edgar mittleholzer trilogy of novels.  The kaywana trilogy.  But be careful.  Every time I pretend I'm a character in an African or Caribbean novel people say I'm racist.  Anyway.  Good little trilogy.

Why would you pretend to be a character in an African or Caribbean novel?

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