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Abolitionism and Imperialism in Britain, Africa, and the Atlantic


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About the Author

Derek R. Peterson is a senior lecturer in African history and director of the Centre of African Studies at the University of Michigan. He is the author of Creative Writing: Translation, Bookkeeping, and the Work of Imagination in Colonial Kenya, and editor of The Invention of Religion: Rethinking Belief in Politics and History.


"Derek Peterson has succeeded in putting together a first-rate collection that extends our understanding of the global reach and influence of British abolitionism. Original and innovative, it offers a range of insights, not least about the legacy of abolitionism, that will have a major impact on future research in this area, while at the same time reshaping what has become known as the `new Atlantic history.'"
"This is a strong collection of some of the best scholars in the field playing variations on the theme of abolition, slavery, and empire. The research and writing are of the highest quality, contributing to ongoing historiographical debates, and the book as a whole provides a strong synthesis of the current abolition literature for students."
"This is an important collection, ambitious in its geographical and temporal sweep, meticulous in its attention to the specific, and providing a reassessment of both the campaign to end the British slave trade and the degree to which that campaign fashioned British imperial life and policy for decades after."
"Both the introduction and the final essay by Glassman are fitting bookends to a volume that will serve as an excellent classroom text. They both summarize the existing literature while offering new insights into the legacy of abolitionist rhetoric more than a century after it was successfully deployed to help end the slave trade."
"Drawing together impressive contributions by established scholars, the essays reframe the study of African actors in African slavery and Britain's imperialist agenda couched in the language of abolition.... The virtue of such a collection is two-fold and can easily be incorporated into either an introductory course or an advanced course in the field."
"This volume certainly sets a high standard for future publications to follow.... Abolitionism and Imperialism can be recommended without reservation both for the general reader and every educational level from sixth former upwards."
"Every essay is engaging and erudite...."
"I must pay Derek Peterson an enormous tribute for selecting and editing such marvelous and cutting-edge scholarship. This volume should have a major impact for years to come on our interpretations of the broad and often unexplored effects and consequences of British abolitionism." -- David Brion Davis
"Derek Peterson has assembled a sparkling collection which seriously challenges the narrative of abolition as British triumphalism, and incisively demonstrates the global reach of abolitionist discourse long after the abolition of slavery. It is refreshing to see a new cast of characters people the abolitionist stage, and from parts of the world well beyond Britain and the Atlantic." -- Philippa Levine
"The book's seven essays highlight the political and moral latitude of abolitionism as well as the transoceanic discourse that it ignited during and even after the era of abolitionism.... These contributors certainly broaden our perspective of the abolitionist project in the West and beyond."

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