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A social history of black culture in colonial North Carolina

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Title: A social history of black culture in colonial North Carolina
Author(s): Bontemps, Arna Alexander
Doctoral Committee Chair(s): McColley, Robert
Department / Program: History
Discipline: History
Degree Granting Institution: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree: Ph.D.
Genre: Dissertation
Subject(s): History, Black History, United States
Abstract: By surveying the full range of existing contemporary documents available for the study of slavery in colonial North Carolina, this study has attempted to provide a social history of black culture in colonial North Carolina against which it has sought to outline the aesthetic dimension of black life in that colony. The organization of the study--beginning with chapters on the historical background to the subject and including sections on life at sea; the slave trade and its mythology; the lore and reality of the coastal environment; the art and craft of agricultural production; measured experience (time, space and distance); the law and lawlessness; the lore of race relations; health, spirituality and romance--reflects its effort to focus analysis primarily on aesthetic considerations as opposed to acculturative concerns.A concluding section, "Jonkonnu and the Art of Liminality", argues that the expressive behavior of blacks in colonial North Carolina generally mirrored the acculturative patterns of other aspects of colonial life among black Carolinians in its outward forms and institutional functions. However, on an emotional and intellectual level, especially as it was reflected in the folklore and ritual life of the black slave, it reflected a persistent sense of cultural estrangement that inhibited cultural reconciliation. In the tenacity of African influences and atavistic perspectives on their art and lore; in their spontaneity and liminal exuberance as artists; and in their imaginative use of unconventional strategies of expressive indirection, black Carolinians both celebrated and lamented their liminality as a reflection of slavery's tragic inner contradictions and as a defense against psychological domination.
Issue Date: 1989
Type: Text
Language: English
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2142/19096
Rights Information: Copyright 1989 Bontemps, Arna Alexander
Date Available in IDEALS: 2011-05-07
Identifier in Online Catalog: AAI8916216
OCLC Identifier: (UMI)AAI8916216
 

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