Ebony and ivy book summary

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ebony and ivy book summary

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Craig Steven Wilder: Ebony And Ivory

It has become an article of faith that American exceptionalism starts with our lack of a feudal past. Settled by sturdy farmers and righteous artisans, the story goes, we were spared the long, bloody transition to capitalism that marked European history.

Ebony and Ivy: Race, Slavery, and the Troubled History of America's Universities

Wilder said. But as he told the archivists more, they would bring out ledgers, letters and other documents. Now, more than a decade later, Mr. He also has a lot more company in the archives. And that tide is far from over.

Leffler Craig Steven Wilder. New York: Bloomsbury, This is a national history, convincingly demonstrating how university faculty and administrators used slavery to their advantage and both reified and institutionalized scientific racism into its curriculum. The book is a profoundly sad and troubling assessment of the political, economic, religious and intellectual underpinnings of a nation based on principles of white supremacy and the central role of American universities in support of such ideas. It is a tour de force of scholarship and analysis, and should be widely used by students of American history and culture. Many universities have begun to explore the role of slavery in their founding and evolution. Brown University president Ruth Simmons supported the most comprehensive institutional self-study of institutional ties to the slave trade.

This summary of Ebony and Ivy includes a complete plot overview – spoilers Convincingly, the book demonstrates how universities took advantage of slavery .
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But the general public has largely remained in the dark. Furthermore, the establishment and growth of these institutions were dependent on wealth accrued from the Atlantic slave trade and slavery, while their professoriates and administrations provided intellectual cover. While these colleges and their promoters used the promise of educating and Christianizing the native population to fundraise at home and abroad, in fact, they contributed to the decimation of Native American nations and the aggrandizement of their lands for profit, with some colleges, such as Trinity and Williams, receiving substantial chunks themselves. Indian missionary the Reverend Eleazar Wheelock, the founder of Dartmouth, was one who followed this path of tokenism: fewer than twenty native students graduated from Dartmouth in two centuries, despite significant funding. The expansion of American higher education in the eighteenth century, Wilder argues, coincided with an economic boom in merchant capitalism, which rested on the twin pillars of the slave trade and slave labor. Slave traders financed endowed chairs and became trustees, and colleges made a special effort to recruit the sons of a wealthy slaveholding colonial elite.




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    Spring 2019

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    African American Review

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