Laboring Women: Reproduction and Gender in New World Slavery

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University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004 - History - 279 pages

How childbearing among enslaved women became commodified—and was exploited by slaveowners as well as slaves.

 

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User Review  - DarthDeverell - LibraryThing

In Laboring Women: Reproduction and Gender in New World Slavery, Jennifer L. Morgan “argues that as slaveowners contemplated women’s reproductive potential with greed and opportunism, they utilized ... Read full review

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This is one of the best books I have ever read in my whole entire life. And I do not say that lightly. Jennifer Morgan illuminates the narratives of the women involved in the Trans Atlantic Slave trade in a way that does not titillate any gaze with violent imagery. She challenges the myth that the TAS was gendered as male labourers and demonstrates to her reader how the figure and the ideology of Black Women were used to justify stealing people, kidnapping people, enslaving people - and reproducing that enslavement too.
My silly little review here does not do this book justice. Just open the sample, read the FIRST paragraph - you will see it is the best and most beautifully written piece of writing you've ever come across. And then you will keep reading.
I would also buy this book because you will devour it and want to keep referring to it again and again.
 

Contents

Some Could Suckle over Their Shoulder Male Travelers Female Bodies and the Gendering of Racial Ideology
14
The Number of Women Doeth Much Disparayes the Whole Cargoe The TransAtlantic Slave Trade and West African Gender Roles
52
The Breedings Shall Goe with Their Mothers Gender and Evolving Practices of Slaveownership in the English American Colonies
71
Hannah and Hir Children Reproduction and Creolization Among Enslaved Women
109
Womens Sweat Gender and Agricultural Labor in the Atlantic World
146
Deluders and Seducers of Each Other Gender and the Changing Nature of Resistance
168
Epilogue
198
Notes
205
Bibliography
253
Index
275
Acknowledgments
279
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About the author (2004)

Jennifer L. Morgan teaches history and women's and gender studies at Rutgers University, New Brunswick.

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