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Escaping Slavery by Sea in Antebellum America: A Labor History, Marcus Rediker
This paper explores a neglected topic in the histories of slavery and abolitionism: how enslaved people escaped by sea and more specifically how the waterfront was a zone of struggle over slavery from roughly 1820 to 1865. Sailors, dockworkers, artisans, porters, carters, market women, and seagoing fugitives cooperated and conspired in an alternative “public sphere,” using connections within the maritime working class to unleash a powerful though little understood force of abolitionism from below.
Respondents: Seth Rockman, Brown University, and Hayley Negrin, UIC