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The American South and the Atlantic World$
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Brian Ward, Martyn Bone, and William A. Link

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780813044378

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813044378.001.0001

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Was U.S. Emancipation Exceptional in the Atlantic, or Other Worlds?

Was U.S. Emancipation Exceptional in the Atlantic, or Other Worlds?

(p.149) 7 Was U.S. Emancipation Exceptional in the Atlantic, or Other Worlds?
The American South and the Atlantic World

Jeffrey R. Kerr-Ritchie

University Press of Florida

This chapter adopts a transnational perspective to reappraise the enormous literature on U.S. Emancipation and Reconstruction and exposes a surprisingly strong residual commitment to ideas of southern exceptionalism. Looking to the Atlantic and other worlds to find points of comparison, the chapter challenges some of the dominant paradigms of nineteenth century US historiography to re-evaluate what, if anything, was really distinctive about the southern experiences of Civil War, Emancipation, and Reconstruction.

Keywords:   US South, Atlantic World, Black Atlantic, slavery, US Civil War, Emancipation, Reconstruction, historiography

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