West Indian Slavery and British Abolition, 1783-1807

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Cambridge University Press, Mar 29, 2010 - Business & Economics - 350 pages
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This book challenges conventional wisdom regarding the political and economic motivations behind the final decision to abolish the British slave trade in 1807. Recent historians believe that this first blow against slavery was the result of social changes inside Britain and pay little attention to the important developments that took place inside the West Indian slave economy. David Beck Ryden's research illustrates that a faltering sugar economy after 1799 tipped the scales in favor of the abolitionist argument and helped secure the passage of abolition. Ryden examines the economic arguments against slavery and the slave trade that were employed in the writings of Britain's most important abolitionists. Using a wide range of economic and business data, this study deconstructs the assertions made by both abolitionists and antiabolitionists regarding slave management, the imperial economy, and abolition.

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Contents

Jamaican Planters and the London West India Interest
40
A Scene of West Indian Industry 1763
45
The Production and Distribution of Jamaican Muscovado 8 3
83
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

David Beck Ryden (Associate Professor of History, University of Houston - Downtown) has degrees in Economics and History from Connecticut College (BA), the University of Delaware's College of Business and Economics (MA), and the University of Minnesota's Department of History (Ph.D.). He is the author of several articles on British American slave societies for Slavery and Abolition, The Journal of Interdisciplinary History, and Social Science History. He is also editor of The Promoters of the Slave Trade, a collection of pro-slavery pamphlets produced by West Indian planters during the age of abolition. The Economic History Association selected Ryden's dissertation as a finalist for the Alexander Gerschenkron Prize. He was a postdoctoral fellow and lecturer in the Department of American Studies and History at Brunel University in London.

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