In their efforts to achieve freedom, ex-slaves mounted a dual struggle to elude the personal domination of the old order and to blunt new coercions embedded in terms of emerging wage employment. This book draws on a rich documentary record to allow ex-slaves to express in their own words and behavior the aspirations that underlay their efforts. The author discusses the labor disputes that convulsed the post-Civil War South, in which can be read former slaves’ critiques of both Southern slavery and Northern freedom.
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