The Peculiar Institution summary

The Peculiar Institution summary

topic : The Peculiar Institution summary

Given that most northern states had abolished slavery by the 1830s, how is it useful to think of slavery as a national—rather than regional—economic and political system? More specifically, how did the North contribute to and profit from the continuation of slavery in the South?
While some poor southern whites resented the dominance of the “slavocracy,” most supported the institution of slavery and accepted the power of the planter class. Why did the “plain folk” continue to support slavery?
Identify the different types of resistance to slavery. Which ones were the most common, the most effective, and the most demonstrative?
Material:
Read attached file: The Peculiar Institution summary
Read Chapter 11 summary The Peculiar Institution
This chapter concentrates on the history of slavery in the Old South, roughly between 1800 and 1860. The chapter begins by discussing the economic dominance of cotton in the South and how the northern and international textile industry depended on the raw material. As the North industrialized, the South’s economy rested overwhelmingly on the cash crop of cotton. Next, the chapter describes different classes of southern whites and seeks to explain why non-slaveholding whites supported the institution of slavery. The various proslavery arguments are explained, illustrating how the definition of freedom was bent to justify the “peculiar institution.” One of the “Voices of Freedom” pieces focuses on how the Bible sanctions slavery. Slave masters had a variety of tools from which to pick in order to maintain order with the slaves. Physical violence was the most dramatic way of disciplining slaves, but the threat of sale was the most effective. The chapter next considers slave society and culture, with emphasis on slaves’ efforts to maintain some form of autonomy via family life, folklore, and religion. Slave culture also cultivated a strong will for freedom. This section also examines free blacks in the slave South. The chapter concludes with a look at various forms of slave resistance, from silent sabotage to full-scale rebellions. One form of resistance, running away, is highlighted in the “Voices of Freedom” piece by Joseph Taper, who escaped from Virginia to Canada

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