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African Americans and Revolutionary America

Freedom and Oppression, 1772-1804

Documents the lives and contributions of African Americans to American society and their essential role in early American history
Learn what makes this product unique
  • Almost every known printed work about African Americans from the onset of the American Revolution to the Early Republic period
  • Chronicles the American separation from Great Britain — and the role African Americans played before, during, and after the war
  • A fully searchable online resource comprising more than 700,000 pages with applications for numerous academic disciplines

From the first upheavals of the American Revolution to the beginning of the nineteenth century, African Americans helped shaped the course of American history. During America’s War for Independence, African Americans both enslaved and free fought in all the major campaigns of the Continental Army. Leaders of the anti-slavery movement recognized and discussed the inherent contradiction in African American participation in the War and used it to advance moral arguments against slavery: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal...” In addition to the war effort, peoples of African origin made remarkable contributions to Revolutionary America in politics, the law, science, mathematics, literature, and elsewhere. 

African Americans and Revolutionary America gathers in a single place almost every known printed work about African Americans from the period, offering researchers multiple perspectives on the lives of Black Americans, the role of faith in African American communities, the growth of abolitionism, the institution of slavery, and the development of racial thought and racism. 

A curated collection that inspires new and exciting research opportunities 
This resource offers faculty and students context on the lives of Black Americans during the Revolutionary period in America. Readex has assembled more than 700,000 pages of primary materials sourced from premier repositories, including the renowned Afro-Americana Collection of The Library Company of Philadelphia and the Evans and Shaw-Shoemaker collections from the American Antiquarian Society. 

African Americans and Revolutionary America supports cross-disciplinary research in history, economics, labor, literature, religion, health, science, sociology, and race. For faculty who teach courses devoted to the challenges and contributions of African Americans during this formative period, the database provides many points of departure for a vast array of research projects:

  • Free Black communities
  • Construct of race
  • Works by Black authors
  • Abolitionism
  • Society, manners, and customs
  • Health and medicine
  • Slavery and the Church
  • Race in law and politics
  • Pro-Slavery arguments
  • And many more

To facilitate research, this resource features Readex Text Explorer, a proprietary text-exploration tool utilizing Voyant technology and a Readex-designed workflow – a standard feature now available in nearly every Readex product. 

A distinctive and comprehensive collection — the second in a new series from Readex 
African Americans and Revolutionary America is the second of six series in Readex’s Black American History Collection. Look for coverage of the African American experience during specific historic periods, including the Early Atlantic World, the Early American Republic, Antebellum America, the pre-Civil War period, and the American Civil War.

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Areas of Study
This product supports the following subjects
African American Studies
American Studies
Ethnic Studies
US History
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