Representations of Slavery: Race and Ideology in Southern Plantation Museums / Edition 1

Paperback (Print)
Rent from
(Save 59%)
Est. Return Date: 07/26/2015
Buy Used
Buy Used from
(Save 41%)
Item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging.
Condition: Used – Good details
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $10.24
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 53%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (16) from $10.24   
  • New (6) from $10.24   
  • Used (10) from $10.36   


How is slavery presented at the public and private plantation museums in the American South, almost 150 years after the Civil War? Jennifer L. Eichstedt and Stephen Small investigated this question in Virginia, Georgia, and Louisiana by touring more than one hundred plantation museums; twenty locations organized and run by African Americans; and eighty general history sites. Their findings indicate that the experience and legacy of slavery is still inadequately presented within the larger discourse surrounding race, racism, and national identity.

The vast majority of slavery sites construct narratives of history that valorize a white elite of the pre-emancipation South and trivialize the experience of slavery for both enslaved people and their enslavers. Through systematic analysis of richly textured data, the authors of Representations of Slavery have developed a typology of primary representational/discursive strategies used to discuss slavery and the enslaved. They clearly demonstrate how these strategies are linked to representations and practices in the larger social and political arenas.

Eichstedt and Small found counter narratives at sites organized and staffed by African Americans, and a small number of white-organized sites have made efforts to incorporate African American experiences of slavery as part of their presentations. But the predominant framework of the “white-centric exhibition narrative” persists, and the authors draw from contemporary literature on racialization, museums, cultural studies, and collective memory to make a case for public debate and intervention.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781588340962
  • Publisher: Smithsonian Institution Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/2002
  • Series: Museum Studies Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 312
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Jennifer L. Eichstedt is an assistant professor of sociology at Humboldt State University in Aracata, California. Stephen Small is an associate professor of African American studies at the University of California at Berkeley.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

1 Racialized Ideologies and Plantation Museums 1
Pt. 1 History and Overview
2 Different States and Themes 25
3 Overview of Plantation Sites and Tourism 59
Pt. 2 Managing Slavery: Representational Strategies
4 Symbolic Annihilation and the Erasure of Slavery 105
5 Trivializing and Deflecting the Experience of Enslavement 147
6 Segregated Knowledge 170
7 Toward Relative Incorporation: Complicating the Master Narrative 203
Pt. 3 Alternatives and Conclusions
8 Counternarratives of Black-Run and Black-Organized Sites 233
9 Conclusions 257
App.: Categories of Plantation Museum Sites 271
References 277
Index 293
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)