Chronology of Racism

LeoCasey at aol.com LeoCasey at aol.com
Tue Jul 25 16:30:50 MDT 1995


In a message dated 95-07-25 16:50:01 EDT, you write:

> In the decades before and after 1800 both the material base and the
>ideology of oppression--class oppression, "race" oppression, gender
>oppriession--changed radically. See, for one example, (name?) Laquer's
>_Making Sex__. Also see Stephanie Coontz, _The Social Origins of Private
Life_. She
>argues (as does Fields) that "racism" only came into existence at that time,
>and that the earlier oppression and exploitation of slaves should be seen as
>patriarchal, not racist. (North Carolina executed a white man in 1806 for
>kidnapping a black man into slavery; 41 years later the legislature affirmed
>that anyone black could in priniciple be considered a slave.)

Are you sure of these dates? A case might be made for a change in the nature
of enslavement circa 1700 (although even this would be a bit late), but 1800
makes no sense to me, based on the literature. See the classics on the
origins of slavery in the Americas and US -- Withrop Jordan, George
Fredrickson, etc. I also think that describing the early stages of slavery
and indentured servitude as 'patriarchal' is a big stretch -- by that
definition, virtually any relationship of exploitation which is
pre-capitalist in some respect, it is patriarchal. I am not convinced that
patriarchal is a useful term in general, and certainly not as applied here,




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