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A biannual publication offering insights into the use of digital historical collections

American Literature

American Literature

Womanhood, Religion, and Slavery: Dialogues from the Readex African American Newspapers Series

Nineteenth-century African American newspapers attracted black writers, subscription agents, printers, and readers eager to imbibe news and opinions from their own heterogeneous, diverse communities. They considered the impact of American slavery on global trade and commerce and global appropriations of African American culture and ideas. They ranged from commercial publications...

Womanhood, Religion, and Slavery: Dialogues from the Readex African American Newspapers Series

Nineteenth-century African American newspapers attracted black writers, subscription agents, printers, and readers eager to imbibe news and opinions from their own heterogeneous, diverse communities. They considered the impact of American slavery on global trade and commerce and global appropriations of African American culture and ideas. They ranged from commercial publications...

Washington Goode and Melville’s Billy Budd, Sailor: Race and the Death Penalty through Nineteenth-Century Media

What connects the 1849 execution of an obscure African American sailor with Billy Budd, Sailor, the enigmatic novella written by Herman Melville, one of the greatest American writers of the nineteenth century? Perhaps a great deal. Let’s begin with the sailor, a man by the name of Washington Goode, about...

The Cultural Work of Child’s Play: Examples from Three Picture Books in Readex Digital Collections

Recently digitized children’s books available in Readex collections include three that show the interplay between adult work and child’s play—opening up newly accessible vistas in areas such as visual culture and child studies. In my tenure of over thirty years at the American Antiquarian Society, I have either cataloged or...

Rascalities and Notorieties: Salacious and Satirical Illustrations in the Flash Press of the Nineteenth Century

The early 1840s saw the rise of new underground newspapers, known collectively as the “flash press,” dedicated to the licentious appetites of the American urban male. Their readers saw these publications as satirical, irreverent and ribald; but to their opponents, they were obscene, vulgar and immoral. At first glance, they...

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