New PDF release: A Self-Evident Lie: Southern Slavery and the Threat to

By Jeremy J. Tewell

A Self-Evident Lie explores and underscores the phobia and intricate which means of “slavery” to northerners ahead of the Civil conflict. Many northerners requested: If slavery was once the beneficent and paternalistic establishment that southerners claimed, may perhaps it now not be utilized with equivalent morality to whites in addition to blacks? Republicans time and again expressed situation that proslavery arguments weren't inherently racial. without reference to race, an individual may possibly fall sufferer to the argument that they have been “inferior,” that they might be at an advantage enslaved, that their enslavement served the pursuits of society, or that their subjugation used to be justified via background and religion.

In trenchant and swish prose, Jeremy Tewell argues that a few Republicans, such a lot significantly Abraham Lincoln, held that the one potent shield of person liberty was once common liberty, as expressed within the assertion of Independence. so long as american citizens believed that “all males” have been endowed with inalienable rights to lifestyles, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, everyone’s liberty will be self-evident, despite circumstance.

Conversely, the reasons intended to exclude a phase of society from the rights of guy labored to damage the self-evidence of these very rights. for this reason, via failing to repudiate slavery—thus rejecting the universality of human liberty—northerners made themselves susceptible to proslavery rationales, specially after they occurred to occupy a place of political, social, or fiscal weak point. Black pores and skin were stigmatized as a badge of servitude, yet there has been not anything to assure that white epidermis could consistently function an unimpeachable badge of freedom.

This used to be an immense subject matter in Lincoln’s crusade opposed to Stephen A. Douglas and used to be a key argument opposed to using well known sovereignty because the process for making a choice on slavery’s prestige within the territories. based on Tewell, Lincoln’s maximum problem used to be to persuade northern audiences that straightforward indifference to slavery used to be itself inimical to the freedom of whites.

A Self-Evident Lie will intrigue an individual attracted to matters concerning Lincoln, slavery and antislavery, the Civil battle, and American highbrow history.

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A Self-Evident Lie: Southern Slavery and the Threat to American Freedom (American Abolitionism and Antislavery) by Jeremy J. Tewell


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