"With information gleaned from contemporary letters, journals and court archives, White Cargo is packed with proof that he brutalities usually associated with black slavery were, for centuries, also inflicted on whites." -Daily Mail "An eye-opening and heart-rending story." -The Times (London) "High school American history classes present indentured servitude as a benignly paternalistic system whereby colonial immigrants spent a few years working off their passage and went on to better things. Not so, this impassioned history argues: the indentured servitude of whites was comparable in most respects to the slavery endured by blacks. Given the hideous mortality rates, the authors argue, indentured contracts often amounted to a life sentence at hard labor-some convicts asked to be hanged rather than be sent to Virginia ... their expose of unfree labor in the British colonies paints an arresting portrait of early America as gulag. 8 pages of photos." -Publishers Weekly "A colorful series of portraits of villains and victims, exploiters and exploited, rendered with bemused outrage."-Choice "This vividly written book tells the tale from both sides of the Atlantic ... meticulously sourced and footnoted-but is never dry or academic...Jordan and Walsh offer an explanation of how the structures of slavery-black or white-were entwined in the roots of American society. They refrain from drawing links to today, except to remind readers that there are probably tens of millions of Americans who are descended from white slaves without even knowing it." -New York Times Book Review
Descripción del producto
In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, 300,000 people or more became slaves there in all but name. Urchins were swept up from London's streets to labour in the tobacco fields, brothels were raided to provide 'breeders' for Virginia and hopeful migrants were duped into signing as indentured servants, unaware they would become chattels who could be bought, sold and gambled away.
Drawing on letters, diaries, and court and government archives, the authors demonstrate that the brutalities associated with black slavery alone were perpetrated on whites throughout British rule.
The trade ended with American independence but the British still tried to sell convicts in their former colonies, which prompted one of the most audacious plots in Anglo-American history.
This is a saga of exploitation and cruelty spanning 170 years that has been submerged under the overwhelming memory of black slavery. White Cargo
brings the brutal, uncomfortable story to the surface.