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Slavery and Freedom on the Middle Ground
Author: Barbara Jeanne Fields

ISBN: 9780300040326
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 286
Published: 26 August 1987
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2 x 1.6
Description:
During the tumultuous Civil War era, the border state of Maryland occupied a middle position both geographically and socially. Situated between the slave-labor states of the lower South and the free-labor states of the North, Maryland-with a black population almost evenly divided between slave and free-has long received credit for moderation and mediation in an era of extremes. Barbara Fields argues that this position in between concealed as intense and immoderate a drama as enacted in the Deep South. According to Fields, "The middle ground imparted an extra measure of bitterness to enslavement, set close boundaries on the liberty of the ostensibly free, and played havoc with bonds of love, friendship, and family among slaves and between them and free black people." Moreover, the work of destroying slavery and constructing a society of free labor proved to be as difficult in Maryland as in the former Confederacy-even more difficult, in some respects. Probing the relationships among Maryland's slaves and free blacks, its slaveholders, and its non-slaveholders, Fields shows how centrist moderation turned into centrist immoderation unde...

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