Scenes of Subjection: Terror, Slavery, and Self-Making in Nineteenth-Century America / Edition 1

Scenes of Subjection: Terror, Slavery, and Self-Making in Nineteenth-Century America / Edition 1

by Saidiya V. Hartman
     
 


In this provocative and original exploration of racial subjugation during slavery and its aftermath, Saidiya Hartman illumines the forms of terror and resistance that shaped black identity. Scenes of Subjection examines the forms of domination that usually go undetected; in particular, the encroachments of power that take place through notions of humanitySee more details below

Overview


In this provocative and original exploration of racial subjugation during slavery and its aftermath, Saidiya Hartman illumines the forms of terror and resistance that shaped black identity. Scenes of Subjection examines the forms of domination that usually go undetected; in particular, the encroachments of power that take place through notions of humanity, enjoyment, protection, rights, and consent. By looking at slave narratives, plantation diaries, popular theater, slave performance, freedmen's primers, and legal cases, Hartman investigates a wide variety of "scenes" ranging from the auction block and minstrel show to the staging of the self-possessed and rights-bearing individual of freedom. While attentive to the performance of power--the terrible spectacles of slaveholders' dominion and the innocent amusements designed to abase and pacify the enslaved--and the entanglements of pleasure and terror in these displays of mastery, Hartman also examines the possibilities for resistance, redress and transformation embodied in black performance and everyday practice. This important study contends that despite the legal abolition of slavery, emergent notions of individual will and responsibility revealed the tragic continuities between slavery and freedom. Bold and persuasively argued, Scenes of Subjection will engage readers in a broad range of historical, literary, and cultural studies.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195089844
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
09/28/1997
Series:
Race and American Culture Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
296
Sales rank:
749,286
Product dimensions:
9.00(w) x 6.10(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

Introduction3
IFormations of Terror and Enjoyment
1Innocent Amusements: The Stage of Sufferance17
2Redressing the Pained Body: Toward a Theory of Practice49
3Seduction and the Ruses of Power79
IIThe Subject of Freedom
4The Burdened Individuality of Freedom115
5Fashioning Obligation: Indebted Servitude and the Fetters of Slavery125
6Instinct and Injury: Bodily Integrity, Natural Affinities, and the Constitution of Equality164
Notes207
Selected Bibliography255
Index277

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