Date and Time:
On November 6, Professor Stephanie Camp will discuss slavery in the modern United States, highlighting the overwhelming economic significance enslaved labor held for the entire country, not simply the southern states, in the years following the American Revolution. Slavery was a national institution, one that served as the foundation for the growth of American wealth and industrial development, expanding rapidly following the invention of the cotton gin. Camp’s lecture will also highlight the role of slavery in the development of a central category of American identity: race. For it was the development and persistence of slavery in the 18th and 19th centuries that drove the invention and reinvention of the racial categories “black” and “white.” Camp will explore how those categories shifted from cultural identities to biological ones.