Slavery in the Development of the Americas brings together work from leading historians and economic historians of slavery. The essays cover various aspects of slavery and the role of slavery in the development of the southern United States, Brazil, Cuba, the French and Dutch Caribbean, and elsewhere in the Americas. Some essays explore the emergence of the slave system, and others provide important insights about the operation of specific slave economics. There are reviews of slave markets and prices, and discussions of the efficiency and distributional aspects of slavery. Perspectives are brought on the transition from slavery and subsequent adjustments, and the volume contains the work of prominent scholars, many of whom have been pioneers in the study of slavery in the Americas.
• Work by many of the leading economic historians of slavery in the Americas • Reviews much of the research of the last 30 years • Coverage of all parts of the Americas
Part I. Establishing the System: 1. White Atlantic? The choice for African slave labor in the plantation Americas Seymour Drescher; 2. The Dutch and the slave Americas Pieter C. Emmer; Part II. Patterns of Slave Use: 3. Mercantile strategies, credit networks, and labor supply in the colonial Chesapeake in trans-Atlantic perspective Lorena S. Walsh; 4. African slavery in the production of subsistence crops, the case of São Paulo in the nineteenth century Fransisco Vidal Luna and Herbert S. Klein; 5. The transition from slavery to freedom through manumission: a life-cycle approach applied to the United States and Guadeloupe Frank D. Lewis; Part III. Productivity Change and Its Implications: 6. Prices of African slaves newly arrived in the Americas, 1673–1865: new evidence on long-run trends and regional differentials David Eltis and David Richardson; 7. American slave markets during the 1850s: slave price rises in the US, Cuba, and Brazil in comparative perspective Laird W. Bergad; 8. The relative efficiency of free and slave agriculture in the antebellum United States: a stochastic production frontier approach Elizabeth B. Field-Hendrey and Lee A. Craig; Part IV. Implications for Distribution and Growth: 9. Slavery and economic growth in Virginia, 1760–1860: a view from probate records James R. Irwin; 10. The poor: slaves in early America Philip D. Morgan; 11. The North-South wage gap, before and after the Civil War Robert A. Margo; The writings of Stanley L. Engerman.
Review of the hardback: 'This extensive review of slavery on the continent of America is one of those rare books that comes under the heading of 'essential reading' on the subject of enslavement in the Americas … As one might imagine, some papers are difficult to those innocent of the skills of mathematical analysis. Nonetheless, this book is of such importance an effort in that direction pays off handsomely.' Open History