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Foul Means: The Formation of a Slave Society in Virginia, 1660-1740 (Published for the Omohundro Institute of Early American Hist) Paperback

ISBN-13: 978-0807854860 ISBN-10: 0807854867

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Foul Means: The Formation of  a Slave Society in Virginia, 1660-1740 (Published for the Omohundro Institute of Early American Hist) + Sugar and Slaves: The Rise of the Planter Class in the English West Indies, 1624-1713 (Published for the Omohundro Institute of Early American Hist) + Black Majority: Negroes in Colonial South Carolina from 1670 through the Stono Rebellion (Norton Library)
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Product Details

  • Series: Published for the Omohundro Institute of Early American Hist
  • Paperback: 280 pages
  • Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press (September 26, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807854867
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807854860
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.1 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #651,675 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Amazingly, generations of Virginia historians portrayed the colony's descent into race slavery as the emergence of a Golden Age. But Parent's compelling book casts new light on this grim and crucial evolution over three generations, demonstrating it was hardly a benign shift, or even an 'unthinking decision.' Instead, it was a terrible transformation that has thrown its long shadow across the rest of American history. It will take time for the full message to sink in.(Peter H. Wood, Duke University)

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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Roy E. Cloudburst on June 1, 2007
Format: Paperback
Those who have a passion for understanding the often complex, and sometimes, ambiguous, relationship between slavery and freedom in the colonial world will be pleased to read Anthony Parent's new work - Foul Means. This well written and exhaustively researched work discusses the aforementioned dilemma in Virginia from the mid-seventeenth to the mid-eighteenth century. The central argument is that the planter elite in Virginia, or "great planters," established America's racial dilemma. Modifying traditional colonial arguments, the author advances the thesis that planters were not conscious of their actions. "The analysis," contends Parent, "challenges the generally accepted belief that the shift to racial slavery was an `unthinking decision' on the part of a wide variety of aspiring planters who were responding to market and labor forces." (2) According to Parent, they knew that slavery was a pivotal cog in the colonial power wheel, and they carefully and consciously leveraged all available resources to tilt the balance in their favor. As for motivation, the planters were inspired by the ever shifting economic tides that existed between the New and Old Worlds.

The author emphasizes the importance of labor in the early American south and in England. The crown initially supported servitude in the colonies as means to promote and encourage economic development in the New World, but as Parent carefully articulates, the English economists came to realize the pitfalls of this arrangement. Charles II implemented this philosophy and "promoted the slave trade to preserve English labor for England." (60) The development of the slave trade became, in essence, more economically and lawfully viable for the crown.
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4 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Robert W. Kellemen on December 9, 2006
Format: Paperback
"Foul Means" is a powerful expose' of the history of slavery in the Virginia Commonwealth. Because of its importance in earlier American history, one can say, "As Virginia goes, so goes America." Thus, in many ways this book traces the course of slavery throughout the thirteen colonies and beyond and provides a moving picture of the ruthlessness involved in the enslavement of an entire race.

Reviewer: Bob Kellemen, Ph.D., is the author of Beyond the Suffering: Embracing the Legacy of African American Soul Care and Spiritual Direction .
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