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dc.contributor.advisorNicolson, Colin-
dc.contributor.authorWallace, Shaun-
dc.description.abstractThis dissertation is a systematic investigation of fugitive slave advertisements aiming to understand the nature of fugitives’ rebelliousness in Georgia and Maryland between 1790 and 1810. Hitherto, historical inquiry pertaining to slave fugitivity has focused on other states and other times. This study provides a close reading of 5,567 advertisements pertaining to runaway slaves and analyses extracted data pertaining to the prosopography of 1,832 fugitives and their fugitivity. Its main research questions focus on advertisements as manifest records of rebellion. Who were the fugitives? What do the fugitive slave advertisements reveal about enslaved people’s contestation of slaveholders’ authority? The principal findings are as follows. First, the typography and iconography of fugitive slave advertisements were expressly intended to undermine the individualism and agency of enslaved people. Second, with regard to Georgia and Maryland, while there were spikes between 1796 and 1798 and 1800 and 1801, fugitivity was a daily occurrence, and thus a normative act of rebellion distinct from insurrection. Third, quantitative analysis indicated fugitives were typically young males, in their twenties, likely to escape at any time of the year; Georgia fugitives were more likely to escape in groups. Fourth, qualitative analysis of advertisers’ descriptions of fugitives revealed evidence of challenges to their authority. Depictions of fugitives’ character and remarks or notes on their behaviour constitute evidence of observed characteristics. From the advertisers’ perspective slaves were at their most dangerous when they could read and write or when they were skilled in deception. The “artful” fugitive in particular possessed many skills, sometimes including literacy, which could be used to defy the power that kept him or her in subjection. Fifth, further investigation established clear linkages between literacy and fugitives’ rebelliousness. Qualitative studies to date speak of slave literacy’s theoretical liberating and empowering effects but do not provide tangible accounts of who the literate slaves were or consider literacy as a factor in rebelliousness. The dissertation identified 36 literate slaves in Maryland and 9 in Georgia, and statistical analysis suggested 3.6 percent of US fugitive slaves were literate. Finally, it was evident that literacy was part of a larger contest to circumvent slaveholder authority and attain self-empowerment. Fugitivity itself was the outcome of a history of contestation that might be hidden from history were it not for the advertisements themselves.en_GB
dc.publisherUniversity of Stirlingen_GB
dc.subjectUnited Statesen_GB
dc.subjectfugitive slaveen_GB
dc.subjectfugitive slave advertisementsen_GB
dc.subjectprint cultureen_GB
dc.subjectearly nationalen_GB
dc.subjectearly national perioden_GB
dc.subjectrunaway slavesen_GB
dc.subjectfugitive slave databaseen_GB
dc.subjectreading and writingen_GB
dc.subjectslave narrativesen_GB
dc.subjectFrederick Douglassen_GB
dc.subjectSouth Carolinaen_GB
dc.subjectAtlantic Studiesen_GB
dc.subjectSlave Tradeen_GB
dc.subjectAmerican Studiesen_GB
dc.subject.lcshFugitive slaves Georgia History.en_GB
dc.subject.lcshGeorgia History 1775-1865en_GB
dc.subject.lcshFugitive slaves Maryland Historyen_GB
dc.subject.lcshMaryland History 1775-1865en_GB
dc.subject.lcshAdvertising United States Historyen_GB
dc.subject.lcshFugitive slavesen_GB
dc.titleFugitive Slave Advertisements and the Rebelliousness of Enslaved People in Georgia and Maryland, 1790-1810en_GB
dc.typeThesis or Dissertationen_GB
dc.type.qualificationnameDoctor of Philosophyen_GB
dc.rights.embargoreasonI am requesting an embargo to permit time to write journal articles for publication from my thesis. (Embargo greater than 1 year - approved under the Publication Exception)en_GB
dc.contributor.funderEconomic and Social Research Councilen_GB
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