Empire and Antislavery

Empire and Antislavery

Spain, Cuba, and Puerto Rico, 1833-1874

eBook - 1999
Rate this:
In 1872, there were more than 300,000 slaves in Cuba and Puerto Rico. Though the Spanish government had passed a law for gradual abolition in 1870, slaveowners, particularly in Cuba, clung tenaciously to their slaves as unfree labor was at the core of the colonial economies. Moreover, the Spanish bourgeoisie was deeply implicated in colonial slavery as Spain was the last European power to abolish the slave trade and bonded labor in the Americas.

Nonetheless, people throughout the Spanish empire fought to abolish slavery, including the Antillean and Spanish liberals and republicans who founded the Spanish Abolitionist Society in 1865.The Society met massive conservative resistance in Spain and the Antilles, yet ultimately forced major changes in the imperial order. This book is an extensive study of the origins of the Abolitionist Society and its role in the destruction of Cuban and Puerto Rican slavery and the reshaping of colonial politics.

Christopher Schmidt-Nowara builds his narrative around three pivotal moments. The first is the decade of the 1830s when Spanish revolutionaries consolidated a new imperial order that reconciled liberal institutions in the metropolis with slavery and nonrepresentative rule in the Antilles, provoking important criticisms of slavery, racial conflict, and Spanish rule from members of colonial society. The second focal point is the Liberal Union (1854-1868), a period that witnessed dramatic transformations in both the Spanish and the imperial public spheres, setting the stage for antislavery mobilization and new transatlantic political alliances. Finally, Empire and Antislavery analyzes the Abolitionist Society's challenge to colonial slavery made inthe aftermath of the Spanish and Cuban revolutions of 1868.

Based on research in Spain, Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the United States, Empire and Antislavery carefully reconstructs how abolitionism arose as a critique of the particular structures of capitalism and colonialism in Spain and the Antilles. More generally, it tells a story central to the understanding of slavery, race, and empire in the Atlantic world.

Publisher: Pittsburgh : University of Pittsburgh Press, c1999
ISBN: 9780585043937
Characteristics: xiii, 239 p. : ill. ; 24 cm
Additional Contributors: NetLibrary, Inc


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

There are no comments for this title yet.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


Subject Headings

No similar edition of this title was found at SAPL.

Try searching for Empire and Antislavery to see if SAPL owns related versions of the work.

Suggest for Purchase

To Top