[Marxism] Fwd: How Slavery Gave Capitalism Its Start - The Daily Beast

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Sun Apr 26 06:37:16 MDT 2015

The Business of Slavery and the Rise of American Capitalism, 1815-1860 
establishes its author, Calvin Schermerhorn, as among the best 
practitioners within this new group of historians. While Walter Johnson, 
Seth Rockman, Edward Baptist, and Sven Beckert have recently made the 
same core argument, Schermerhorn exposes the links between capitalism 
and slavery with remarkable clarity, economy, and force. By focusing on 
the most successful firms involved in the domestic slave trade, 
Schermerhorn shows how the building blocks of modern capitalism—from 
innovations in marketing and technology, to the development of 
sophisticated financial instruments—fueled slavery’s expansion 
throughout the South. The possibility of bloodless abstraction is saved 
by his emphasis on the devastating human cost.


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