- STAFF PICKS
- GIFTS + GIFT CARDS
- SELL BOOKS
- FIND A STORE
This item may be
Check for Availability
This title in other editions
Other titles in the Studies in Legal History series:
Slavery on Trial: Law, Abolitionism, and Print Culture (Studies in Legal History)
Synopses & Reviews
"[A] pathbreaking work. . . . [DeLombard] ably integrates the methodologies of literature, history, and law to make a convincing argument that the debate over slavery contributed to the development of print culture in antebellum America. . . . Provides compelling evidence."
-Civil War History "A detailed study of the operation of the law in anti-slavery texts."
-Journal of American Studies "Insightful. . . . Informative. . . . A fruitful examination of the complicated relationship between abolitionist rhetorical practices and African American legal identity."
-Legacy "A worthwhile study which should be of interest to scholars from a range of disciplines including history, legal studies, literature, and American studies."
-Southern Historian "The elegance of the book's unifying legal metaphors and its intensive textual analyses generate fresh insights. . . . An accessible productive analysis that offers a valuable way to conceptualize abolitionism during an era when so many Americans judged arguments for immediate abolition of slavery to be out of order."
-The Register of the Kentucky Historical Society "The depth and breadth of . . . research and discerning literary comments are . . . impressive."
-The Historian "Puts a fresh, legalistic spin on current conventional wisdom among antebellum historians. . . . Provides a rich, nuanced study of popular legal consciousness, racial conflict, and the power of the printed word in antebellum America."
-Law and History Review "Provide[s] us with a broader understanding of the antebellum conflict over the South's peculiar institution and in doing so adds a new dimension to the coming of the Civil War."
America's legal consciousness was high during the era that saw the imprisonment of abolitionist editor William Lloyd Garrison, the execution of slave revolutionary Nat Turner, and the hangings of John Brown and his Harpers Ferry co-conspirators.
DeLombard examines how debates over slavery in the three decades before the Civil War employed legal language to "try" the case for slavery in the court of public opinion via popular print media. The country's legal consciousness was high during the era that saw the imprisonment of abolitionist editor William Lloyd Garrison, the execution of slave revolutionary Nat Turner, and the hangings of John Brown and his Harpers Ferry coconspirators. DeLombard discusses how this consciousness was evident in the "trials" over slavery found in the autobiographies of Frederick Douglass, a scandal narrative about Sojourner Truth, a speech by Henry David Thoreau, fiction by Harriet Beecher Stowe, and a proslavery novel by William McCreary Burwell.
About the Author
Jeannine Marie DeLombard is associate professor of English at the University of Toronto, where she is affiliated with the Centre for the Study of the United States and the Collaborative Program in Book History and Print Culture.
What Our Readers Are Saying