"Highlights sites, themes, and time periods that have often been overlooked by historical archaeologists, and looks particularly at how people maintained space within the oppressive structures of slavery and the relative freedom of post-slavery life in the Caribbean."—American Antiquity
"This book marks an important move towards a better understanding of the complexities of Caribbean historical archaeology."—Cambridge Archaeological Journal
"Expose[s] the existence of a parallel local economy alongside the plantation export economy . . . [and] shows how historical archaeologists must deal with incomplete records and inadequate documentation."—Choice
“Some of the lesser known aspects of human bondage are revealed in this new volume, which offers more nuanced and alternative views of slavery and freedom in the region. . . . [and] paves the way for archaeologists to rethink old questions and seek alternative avenues of research in exciting new ways.”—Society for Historical Archaeology
"Encapsulates the lived experiences of enslaved Africans through a postcolonial and landscape perspective, illuminating new directions for future research of previously overlooked and understudied archaeological assemblages."—Anthropology Book Forum
“The original and enlightening contributions chart a promising path for future studies of the variegated lives of enslaved and free beyond the Anglophone islands.”—New West Indian Guide
"We are reminded that the Caribbean was a more complicated place than we usually imagine."—Kenneth G. Kelly, coeditor of French Colonial Archaeology in the Southeast and Caribbean
"These thirteen lucidly written case studies examine diverse communities, histories, and landscapes, demonstrating that the Caribbean offers historical archaeology a great deal more than the study of sugar and slavery."—Theresa A. Singleton, author of Slavery behind the Wall: An Archaeology of a Cuban Coffee Plantation
Caribbean plantations and the forces that shaped them--slavery, sugar, capitalism, and the tropical, sometimes deadly environment--have been studied extensively. This volume brings together alternate stories of sites that fall outside the large cash-crop estates. Employing innovative research tools and integrating data from Dominica, St. Lucia, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Barbados, Nevis, Montserrat, and the British Virgin Islands, the contributors investigate the oft-overlooked interstitial spaces where enslaved Africans sought to maintain their own identities inside and outside the fixed borders of colonialism.
Despite grueling work regimes and social and economic restrictions, people held in bondage carved out places of their own at the margins of slavery's reach. These essays reveal a complex world within and between sprawling plantations--a world of caves, gullies, provision grounds, field houses, fields, and the areas beyond them, where the enslaved networked, interacted, and exchanged goods and information.
The volume also explores the lives of poor whites, Afro-descendant members of military garrisons, and free people of color, demonstrating that binary models of black slaves and white planters do not fully encompass the diversity of Caribbean identities before and after emancipation. Together, the analyses of marginal spaces and postemancipation communities provide a more nuanced understanding of the experiences of those who lived in the historic Caribbean, and who created, nurtured, and ultimately cut the roots of empire.
Lynsey A. Bates is an archaeological analyst for the Digital Archaeological Archive of Comparative Slavery (DAACS). John M. Chenoweth is assistant professor of anthropology at the University of Michigan–Dearborn. He is the winner of the 2019 Society for Historical Archaeology John L. Cotter Award. James A. Delle, associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Shippensburg University, is the editor of The Limits of Tyranny.
Contributors: Hayden F. Bassett | Lynsey A. Bates | Zachary J.M. Beier | Helen C. Blouet | John M. Chenoweth | John F. Cherry | James A. Delle | Kristen R. Fellows | Khadene K. Harris | Stephan T. Lenik | Marco Meniketti | Matthew C. Reilly | Krysta Ryzewski | Jane I. Seiter | Frederick H. Smith | Laurie A. Wilkie
A volume in the Florida Museum of Natural History: Ripley P. Bullen Series
Expose[s] the existence of a parallel local economy alongside the plantation export economy. . . . [and] shows how historical archaeologists must deal with incomplete records and inadequate documentation.
Encapsulates the lived experiences of enslaved Africans through a postcolonial and landscape perspective, illuminating new directions for future research of previously overlooked and understudied archaeological assemblages.
--Anthropology Book Forum
This collection provides a solid contribution towards archaeologically exploring the diversity of the historic Caribbean. . . . Marks an important move toward a better understanding of the complexities of Caribbean historical archaeology.
--Cambridge Archaeological Journal