Synopses & Reviews
This book explores Africa's involvement in the Atlantic world from the fifteenth through the eighteenth centuries. It focuses especially on the causes and consequences of the slave trade, in Africa, in Europe, and in the New World. Prior to 1680, Africa's economic and military strength enabled African elites to determine how trade with Europe developed. Thornton examines the dynamics that made slaves so necessary to European colonizers. He explains why African slaves were placed in significant roles. Estate structure and demography affected the capacity of slaves to form a self-sustaining society and behave as cultural actors. This second edition contains a new chapter on eighteenth century developments.
"...ambitious and far-reaching reinterpretation....This very significant, far-reaching, impressive work is essential reading for American historians." The Journal of American History
Table of Contents
Preface to the second edition; Preface to the first edition; Introduction; Part I. Africans in Africa: 1. The birth of the Atlantic world; 2. The development of commerce between Europeans and Africans; 3. Slavery and African social structure; 4. The process of enslavement and the slave trade; Part II. Africans in the New World: 5. Africans in colonial Atlantic societies; 6. Africans and Afro-Americans in the Atlantic world: life and labour; 7. African cultural groups in the Atlantic world; 8. Transformations of African culture in the Atlantic world; 9. African religions and Christianity in the Atlantic world; 10. Resistance, runaways, and rebels; Part III. Africans in the Eighteenth-Century Atlantic World.