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Stories of freedom in Black New York

Author: Shane White
Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2002.
Edition/Format:   Print book : Biography : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"Stories of Freedom in Black New York re-creates the experience of black New Yorkers as they moved from slavery to freedom. In the early decades of the nineteenth century, New York City's black community strove to realize what freedom meant and to find a new sense of itself, and, in the process, it created a vibrant urban culture. Through exhaustive research, Shane White imaginatively recovers the raucous world of
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Genre/Form: Biography
History
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
White, Shane.
Stories of freedom in Black New York.
Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2002
(OCoLC)606857375
Material Type: Biography, Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Shane White
ISBN: 0674008936 9780674008939
OCLC Number: 50028767
Description: 260 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
Contents: Introduction --
The end of slavery --
Staging freedom --
Shakespeare's true representative --
Imitation --
Epilogue.
Responsibility: Shane White.
More information:

Abstract:

"Stories of Freedom in Black New York re-creates the experience of black New Yorkers as they moved from slavery to freedom. In the early decades of the nineteenth century, New York City's black community strove to realize what freedom meant and to find a new sense of itself, and, in the process, it created a vibrant urban culture. Through exhaustive research, Shane White imaginatively recovers the raucous world of the street, the elegance of the city's African American balls, and the grubbiness of the Police Office. He allows us to observe the style of black men and women, to watch their public behaviour, and to hear the cries of black hawkers, the strident music of black parades, and the sly stories of black con men."

"Taking center stage in this story is the African Company, a black theater troupe that exemplified the new spirit of experimentation that accompanied slavery's demise. For a few short years in the 1820s, a group of black New Yorkers, many of them ex-slaves, challenged pervasive prejudice and performed plays, including Shakespearean productions, before mixed race audiences. Their audacity provoked excitement and hope among blacks, but often disgust among many whites for whom the theater's existence epitomized the horrors of emancipation."

"Stories of Freedom in Black New York intertwines black theater and urban life into a powerful interpretation of what the end of slavery meant for blacks, whites, and New York City itself. White's story of the emergence of free black culture offers a unique understanding of emancipation's impact on everyday life, and on the many forms freedom can take."--Jacket.

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