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The Legacy of Eric WilliamsInto the Postcolonial Moment$
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Tanya L. "Shields

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781628462425

Published to University Press Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781628462425.001.0001

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date: 06 July 2020

Capitalism and Slavery Revisited

Capitalism and Slavery Revisited

Remaking the Slave Commodity Frontier

(p.172) Chapter 9 Capitalism and Slavery Revisited
The Legacy of Eric Williams

Dale Tomich

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter illustrates how the analysis of Capitalism and Slavery, one of Eric Williams’ contributions to Caribbean and post-colonial historiography and political economy, is an engagement with its critics. It analyzes the historical and textual methodologies used by Williams, noting the unique ways in which he revealed the past through prose. The chapter specifically reevaluates Williams’ arguments about the abolition of slavery in the British West Indies, as well as the critiques they received, from the perspective of Atlantic slavery and the world economy. By examining the issue from a more comprehensive analytical perspective, it is possible to more effectively recover Williams’ emphasis on the economic causes of slave emancipation and reformulate the terms of the debate within the broader historical processes of the Atlantic and world economies.

Keywords:   Capitalism and Slavery, Eric Williams, post-colonial historiography, Atlantic slavery, British West Indies, slave emancipation, world economies

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