Slavery and Its Contexts

Broadview Contexts

  • lack of empathy, numbering of people is disturbing
  • Argues that blacks are lazy, effeminate
  • Descriptions of the passage and its conditions are chilling and deeply disturbing
  • The extent to which the slaves were commoditized became realistic and even stronger in my mind
  • 1772 – Sommerset case in which court
  • Scramble for Africa – 1850’s

Anne Yearsley

  • belonged to laboring class, not classically educated – it is possible that this is the reason that she takes such strong stances
  • “Milkmaid of Bristol”
  • A Poem on the Inhumanity of the Slave-Trade
    • She addresses city of Bristol – acknowledging that the English were once traded as slaves by Roman Empire (tides have turned)
    • She makes it clear that she is speaking to those who are willing to actually listen to her
    • Line 64 – why does she generalize the Christians and Indians?
      • She presents religion as the actor, the name under which the English are ruining the lives of those they enslave and impact, possibly providing a wake-up call
    • Frequently brings up Christianity – not criticizing religion, but the people who claim to follow it, if they treated people as humans, they would probably convert, but they show them an evil face of God

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