‘Malleable at the European Will’

British Discourse on Slavery (1784–1824) and the Image of Africans

Helmut Meier

ibidem Press

‘Malleable at the European Will’

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Pub Date: May 2019

ISBN: 9783838212739

360 Pages

Format: Paperback

List Price: $40.00

Pub Date: May 2019

ISBN: 9783838272733

360 Pages

Format: E-book

List Price: $22.99

‘Malleable at the European Will’

British Discourse on Slavery (1784–1824) and the Image of Africans

Helmut Meier

ibidem Press

Helmut Meier‘s study of pro- and anti-slavery texts from 1784–1825 focuses on understanding the distinct image of Africans in the British debate on the slave trade and slavery as such. Starting from the premise that, at the threshold from the early to the late modern period, the distinct image of Africans as slaves was instrumental in universalizing a Eurocentric concept of capitalist wage labor both at the colonial centres and margins, Meier argues that, by portraying African slaves as suffering wretches, especially anti-slavery texts created colonial Others in an indistinct zone between inclusion and exclusion from humanity. The discourse on slavery thus constructs African slaves as mimetic Others which could subsequently become the objects of a discourse of colonial reform and ‘betterment.’
This study is a highly interesting, innovative scientific contribution that brings new perspectives and results to light. Wolfgang Zach, Leopold-Franzens-Universität Innsbruck

About the Author

Helmut Meier, PhD, studied at the universities of Innsbruck and Nottingham Trent. He published on the abolitionist Thomas Clarkson. He currently teaches at a secondary vocational school and works at a college of education in Innsbruck, Austria.

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