A New History of Abolition
Fri 14 Oct 2016, 18:30 – 20:00, The British Library Conference Centre, 96 Euston Rd
Manisha Sinha discusses her new book The Slave’s Cause: A History of Abolition which is a ‘movement history’ that expands the chronology of Anglo-American abolition and situates it transnationally. Sinha offers a wide-ranging reconsideration of abolition as a radical social movement. She challenges much of the received historical wisdom of abolitionists as bourgeois reformers burdened by racial paternalism and economic conservatism.
Sinha explores the impact of the Haitian Revolution, the European Revolutions of the 1830s and 1848, British Chartism, Irish Repeal, and the international peace movement on the politics and ideology of abolition. She’ll uncover the political significance of slave resistance in the growing radicalisation of the abolition movement that rejects conventional historical divisions between slave resistance and antislavery activism.
More broadly, this talk interrogates how radical social movements like abolition provide political and ideological space for the disfranchised and become engines of political change.