Summary Of Many Thousands Gone By Ira Berlin

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Ira Berlin’s Many Thousands Gone: The First Two Centuries of Slavery in North America is a history of African-American slavery in mainland North America during the first two centuries of European and African settlement.” (1) The first slaves arrived in the New World in 1619 and over the next two hundred years the Atlantic developed from a society with slaves to a slave society. In Many Thousands Gone: The First Two Centuries of Slavery in North America, Berlin argues that both slavery and its culture evolved over time and place to fit the needs of the surroundings. First, Berlin examines societies with slaves, or the Charter Generation, which discusses the people Berlin refers to as “African Creoles”. They were the first slaves to arrive in North America from Africa and were often of mixed race. Members of the charter generation were often treated more like other servants than slaves. In addition, they often were able to earn freedom in American society as slavery was not connected to skin color in the mid-seventeenth century. However, by the end of this section, it is clear that blackness is seen as inferiority. …show more content…

Yet, the downfall to Berlin’s book Many Thousands Gone: The First Two Centuries of Slavery in North America is that while he argues that when, where, and how slaves worked determined slave culture, he fails to focus on slaves themselves. The emphasis is often placed on the evolution of the labor system of slavery and the economy of the region rather than the progression of the slave culture, including family connections, slave-master relations, and religion. However, even with this shortfall, Berlin is able to prove that slavery and the culture of African Americans developed differently over the variety of regions during the first two centuries of slavery in

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