[Marxism] [SUSPICIOUS MESSAGE] Project 1619 and its detractors | Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Fri Jan 10 07:15:26 MST 2020

Last August, the New York Times Sunday Magazine devoted an entire issue 
to Project 1619, an attempt to root today’s racism in the institution of 
slavery dating back to the seventeenth century. In 1619, British 
colonists in Point Comfort, Virginia bought twenty African slaves from 
Portuguese traders who had landed there, fresh from a body-snatching 
expedition. Times reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones wrote the introduction to 
ten articles in the magazine that focused on different aspects of Black 
oppression, such as Traymaine Lee’s on the wealth gap between black and 
white Americans.

Four months later, five prominent historians of the Civil War signed a 
letter demanding that the newspaper correct “errors” and “distortions” 
in Project 1619. Rumor has it that Princeton professor Sean Wilentz 
wrote the letter and lined up four others to co-sign: Victoria Bynum, 
James M. McPherson, James Oakes, and Gordon S. Wood. I would only add 
that Bynum wrote a book that chronicled the armed resistance to wealthy 
slave-owners by poor white southerners and served as a consultant for 
the inspiring movie “The Free State of Jones”.

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