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Notorious in the Neighborhood
Author: Joshua D. Rothman

ISBN: 9780807854402
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 360
Published: 16 March 2003
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.6 x 2.1
Description:
Laws and cultural norms militated against interracial sex in Virginia before the Civil War, and yet it was ubiquitous in cities, towns, and plantation communities throughout the state. In "Notorious in the Neighborhood," Joshua Rothman examines the full spectrum of interracial sexual relationships under slavery--from Thomas Jefferson, Sally Hemings, and the intertwined interracial families of Monticello and Charlottesville to commercial sex in Richmond, the routinized sexual exploitation of enslaved women, and adultery across the color line. He explores the complex considerations of legal and judicial authorities who handled cases involving illicit sex and describes how the customary toleration of sex across the color line both supported and undermined racism and slavery in the early national and antebellum South.

White Virginians allowed for an astonishing degree of flexibility and fluidity within a seemingly rigid system of race and interracial relations, Rothman argues, and the relationship between law and custom regarding racial intermixture was always shifting. As a consequence, even as whites never questioned their own racial supremacy, ...

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