Extending the Frontiers Essays on the New Transatlantic Slave Trade Database David Eltis, David Richardson

Format:
Hardback
Publication date:
17 Oct 2008
ISBN:
9780300134360
Dimensions:
384 pages: 235 x 156 x 30mm
Illustrations:
17 b&w illustrations + 2 maps

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Since 1999, intensive research efforts have vastly increased what is known about the history of coerced migration of transatlantic slaves. A huge database of slave trade voyages from Columbus' era to the mid-nineteenth century is now available on an open-access Web site, incorporating newly discovered information from archives around the Atlantic world. The groundbreaking essays in this book draw on these new data to explore fundamental questions about the trade in African slaves. The research findings - that the size of the slave trade was 14 percent greater than had been estimated, that trade above and below the equator was largely separate, that ports sending out the most slave voyages were not in Europe but in Brazil, and more - challenge accepted understandings of transatlantic slavery and suggest a variety of new directions for important further research.

David Eltis is Robert W. Woodruff Professor of History, Emory University. David Richardson is director, Wilberforce Institute for the Study of Slavery and Emancipation, and professor of economic history, University of Hull, England.

"The greatest mystery in the history of the West, I believe, has always been the number of Africans who were enslaved and shipped to the New World. Who were these Africans? From whence did they hail? Where did they embark in Africa and disembark in the Americas? Five hundred years after that heinous trade commenced, this collection of essays, edited by David Eltis and David Richardson, has finally answered these questions. Together with the new slave trade database, this project has done more to reverse the Middle Passage than any other single act of scholarship possibly could. It is a scholarly miracle. Twelve and a half million slaves were lost; now, thanks to Eltis, Richardson and their contributors, they are found."--Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Harvard University
--Henry Louis Gates, Jr.