Reference Entry

Race, Theories of

Paul Finkelman and Matthew Wilhelm Kapell

in Encyclopedia of African American History, 1619-1895: From the Colonial Period to the Age of Frederick Douglass

Published in print January 2006 | ISBN: 9780195167771
Race, Theories of

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The first African slaves in the New World were brought to the Caribbean in 1502. By the time of English settlement, in 1607, African slaves were found throughout Central and South America and in the Caribbean. In the earliest descriptions of European travelers, Africans were seen as biologically different in fundamental ways. For the most part these differences were the result of cultural factors, but Europeans almost always understood the dissimilarities as being rooted in “nature.” The Africans encountered by the Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, and English were almost all from West Africa, a location dominated by groups that had cultural mores quite different from those of European sailors. European explorers equated variation from their familiar cultural norms with biological inferiority, which they then also linked to differences in physical type. The skin pigmentation of the African populations encountered by European travelers was from the very beginning considered “black,” a label in most cases far from accurate. Prevailing European cultural ideals associated the color black with uncleanness, foulness, laziness, lack of fitness, and other negative concepts. This stands in stark contract to the European colonists' early views of Native Americans, who were seen to be different primarily for social and not biological reasons. In 1619 the first blacks were brought to Jamestown, Virginia, where they were treated as indentured servants. Some of these blacks eventually became free; a few became property owners, and some even became the masters of other servants. The experiences of these blacks suggests that at least in the early years of colonization, the English in North America did not consider “race” to be a central force in determining status. In 1624 a black man named John Phillip was allowed to testify against a white person in a civil suit in Virginia. The court noted that he was “a negro Christened in England 12 yeers since,” and thus his testimony was acceptable. At the time, Phillip's status as an English-speaking Christian outweighed any notions of inferiority that the Virginians might have ascribed to him on account of his race. During the next three decades African and European laborers worked side by side. They sometimes ran away together, intermarried, or had sex with each other. There seems to have been little sense, at least among the lower classes, that Europeans considered Africans fundamentally inferior. Indeed, the experience of Phillip illustrates how the English in the New World were initially uncertain about the social position of blacks. The English could not decide if the lower status of blacks—and they did always have a lower status—was a result of their race or their religion; early laws often used the word “Christian” to refer to Englishmen or other Europeans and “non-Christian” to refer to Africans. However, “race” gradually took over as the key element in determining the status of people of African ancestry. A legislative act of 1667 illustrates this: Virginia lawmakers, aware of the growing importance of slavery in the colony, declared that baptism of a black or a slave “doth not alter the condition of the person as to his bondage or freedome.” This law was passed to encourage the baptism of slaves in order to save their souls—and perhaps make them more pliable slaves or servants. The law shows that by the mid-1660s race, and not religion, was becoming the key factor in determining one's status as enslaved or free. Sometime between the 1630s and the early 1660s Virginia adopted a system of African-based slavery. From that point until the American War of Independence, opinions regarding imported Africans and those bred in the colonies changed dramatically. Much of the shift in opinion was the result of the colonists' evolving idea of race and their increasing belief in the superiority of Europeans. Such concepts largely revolved around colonists' notion of what it meant to be “civilized” and Christian. Contact with Native Americans played a large role in shaping European notions of race and culture and thus affected the manner in which English colonists treated Africans and African Americans. The initial difference was that Africans Americans were considered biologically inferior, whereas Native Americans were usually seen as culturally inferior. Thus, if Native Americans could be Christianized and brought within the scope of European culture, they would become equals. This was never an option for Africans and African Americans, who were from the earliest reports considered not only “savages,” as were Native Americans, but also inherently inferior on a strictly biological basis. The early descriptions of Africans tended to emphasize their physical differences, including their color, the “kinkiness” of their hair, and the perceived differences of their body types. In contrast, similar differences of body type between Native Americans and English colonists were underemphasized. Numerous descriptions explained the darker coloring of Native Americans' skin as either a result of exposure to the sun or an intentional change of skin color through the use of dye. While Africans were assumed to be “naturally black,” it was supposed by many that Native Americans changed their skin color intentionally. English colonials then assumed that Africans were biologically inferior and thus could not be acculturated in any fashion other than as indentured servants or slaves. This attitude changed by the early nineteenth century, when Native Americans also came to be perceived as biologically inferior. The conceptual transformation was necessary in order for the colonials and early Americans to rationalize the displacement of Native Americans and justify discrimination against indigenous cultures. Theology of Race: Single or Multiple Creations The first blacks in Virginia were treated as indentured servants, in part because the English had neither a tradition of slavery nor laws to create such a status. By the 1640s, if not before, some blacks in Virginia were being treated as slaves. By 1660 Virginia was codifying a system of bondage based on African ancestry, which required separating indentured whites from blacks. The residents of the colonies placed Africans first into the lower classes and then, eventually, into a lowest class. Various laws were designed to accomplish this, including one that forced white servants to serve extra time if they ran away with black slaves. Well before Virginia and other colonies began to recognize slavery by statute, blacks were being treated as slaves. There were a number of reasons for this differential treatment. The English in Virginia persistently made distinctions between Christians and non-Christians; Africans usually fell into the second category, which left them vulnerable to mistreatment. Africans in the English colonies lacked a powerful foreign nation to protect them from abuse. Also, for the most part blacks came to the New World in chains, already reduced to the status of “exploited.” By 1700 the English in the New World focused most on the “otherness” of Africans; central to this was skin color, or race. Biological anthropologists and human biologists generally agree that race as a biological concept means little or nothing and is instead a cultural construct. The amount of genetic relatedness within contemporary human populations is such that it is impossible to easily split populations into subgroups. At the time of the earliest colonization of North America by Europeans, however, Africans and African Americans were considered a separate population from colonists. The distinction implied that those of African descent were inferior for “natural” and biological reasons. The emergence of the notion of race is not merely one of science; it is also one of theology. With people who looked so different, be they African, Native American, or Asian, the Biblical story of Adam and Eve did not make sense to many. The general scientific position of the day was that the world was only six thousand years of age, which implied there was simply too much diversity among humans to have developed in such a short period. The first attempt to resolve this theological problem was the “pre-Adamite” theory proposed by the French scholar Isaac de La Peyräre in 1655, which claimed that humans must have existed prior to the biblical story of Adam and Eve. The theory offered a possible explanation for the different groups, or races, that European explorers and colonists were encountering. The theory was soon rejected, in part because it was at odds with the Bible. Nevertheless, in his 1677 work The Primitive Origination of Mankind, Considered and Examined According to the Light of Nature, Sir Matthew Hall remarked on the possibility of pre-Adamites as the most likely reason for the diversity witnessed during European expansion. The Anglican preacher Morgan Goodwyn, in his 1680 The Negro's and Indian's Advocate, ventured the pre-Adamite hypothesis to explain the differences found among native islanders, English colonists, and African slaves. In fact, the pre-Adamite view allowed for an understanding of the “other” as both outside the creation of man in God's image and outside the sphere of Judeo-Christian morality and ethics. This theory thus allowed European colonists, especially the British, to kill and enslave Native Americans and Africans while still considering themselves to be good Christians. Emerging “American” View of Race The Salem witch trials illustrate another aspect of the construction of race in the colonial period. One of the key figures in the trials was the slave Tituba, usually described in court documents as “Tituba Indian,” who was the first to confess to the practice of witchcraft. Her confession helped set off the craze that led to nineteen deaths by hanging, four deaths in prison, and one death through being “pressed.” The nature of Tituba's race remains in question; most historians consider her to have been a West Indian slave of African descent. She has been presented as bearing both native Caribbean and West African ancestry and also as wholly African. Her double identity as both “Tituba Indian” and West African slave indicates much about the way the English colonists and later the American nation transformed their ideas about the social construct of race. That no one in Massachusetts seemed certain of Tituba's race or origin underscores the fluidity of race at the time. By the time of the American Revolution, the concept of “race” seems to have been clearly understood by most Americans. Three races were seen—white, Native American, and black—and it was understood that only one of those races was subject to enslavement. On the eve of the Revolution there were few theories of race. Some Americans, especially Quakers, had begun to argue that enslavement was morally wrong—a violation of God's law—but even the Quakers did not challenge the notion of race as a concept or construct. The American Revolution forced a change. Many argued that if “all men are created equal” and endowed with the right to liberty, as proclaimed by the Declaration of Independence, then slavery was fundamentally wrong. On the other hand, if blacks were somehow not included in the idea of “all men,” then slavery was of course permissible. Some Revolutionaries accepted equality and questioned slavery. In its Gradual Abolition Act of 1780, the Pennsylvania legislature noted that “those persons, who have heretofore been denominated Negro and Mulatto slaves” had been “deprived … of the common blessings that they were by nature entitled to.” Worse yet, they faced “an unnatural separation and sale of husband and wife from each other and from their children.” This was an “injury, the greatness of which can only be conceived by supposing that we were in the same unhappy case.” Thus the Pennsylvania legislature sought to end slavery, seeming to recognize that “race” was merely a social construct and that blacks had the same emotions, needs, desires, and rights as whites. A few years later Thomas Jefferson reached a different conclusion. In his Notes on the State of Virginia (1784) he argued that blacks were a distinctly inferior race. He described blacks as lacking “imagination,” “reason,” “forethought,” and talents in poetry, art, oratory, and science. According to Jefferson they even lacked basic human emotions: “They are more ardent after their female,” he wrote, “but love seems with them to be more an eager desire, than a tender delicate mixture of sentiment and sensation. Their griefs are transient.” In other words, unlike the Pennsylvania legislature, Jefferson could not imagine that blacks felt sorrow when their families were destroyed by sale, because blacks were of a different race with different needs and emotions. Not all Americans accepted the emerging Jeffersonian racism. Dr. Benjamin Rush, lecturing to medical students in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, argued that any perceived differences between European and African populations were wholly due to their status as slaves. In his Topological Description of the Western Territory of North America (1792), George Imlay argued that, other than through the institution of slavery, those of African descent had “essentially the same shape and intellect.” Many others began to argue against slavery and racial distinctiveness based on these notions, especially in New England and the soon to be opening Old Northwest. However, notions of race continued to dominate both cultural and social discourse throughout the period. States in the South continued the practice of slavery and linked a host of traits, including increased sexuality and lack of intelligence, to skin color. While the Northwest Ordinance banned slavery north of the Ohio River in those territories obtained in the Louisiana Purchase, slavery continued to spread south of the Ohio River. As such, differing ideas of race emerged and evolved in both the North and the South, with the eventual explosive consequence of the Civil War. View of Race in the Nineteenth Century In the nineteenth-century United States, concepts of race came from many directions. The idea of a “Great Chain of Being,” which held sway with many scientists and philosophers, suggests that all creation forms a hierarchy, within which is a hierarchy of various human groups. The majority of Americans were Protestant Christians who accepted the biblical story of Creation and argued that all people were descendants of Adam and Eve. They explained racial differences by looking at other parts of the Bible, especially the story of Noah. Scientists and anthropologists offered yet another explanation for race: polygenesis, or multiple sources of human creation. The pseudoscience of phrenology—using extremely precise measurements of the exterior of the skull to extrapolate the behavioral, moral, and intellectual traits of the individual—also allowed for further classifications to be made between groups. Craniologists, most notably Samuel George Morton, measured the volumes of skulls to determine the relative intellect of different populations. With the advent of the theory of Darwinian evolution in the latter half of the century, each of these models was refined and placed within a distorted model of evolutionary change. By the end of the century social Darwinists no longer worried about the origin of the races but assumed that the low status of blacks and other nonwhites indicated their innate inferiority. Great Chain of Being and the Hierarchy of Races First conceived by the Greek philosopher Aristotle (384–322 B.C.E.), the Great Chain of Being was used by medieval Europeans to validate social rank and by some eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Americans to justify racism and slavery. The idea of the Great Chain is that all creation falls into a hierarchy. Atop this hierarchy is perfection—the “First Mover,” or God—and the bottom link of the chain is the least perfect—inanimate objects. Between these two extremes are varying degrees of perfection. The hierarchical aspects inherent within this theory permeated all social thought of the period, including scientific and pseudoscientific thought. Delineation of ever-finer degrees of human groups was undertaken using this model, placing those of European descent at a higher standing than other groups. The lowest of human groups were those of African descent. Every scientific theory modeling human races in the nineteenth century drew on the Great Chain of Being, even though few theorists mention it in their writings. Biblical Explanations of Race In the early nineteenth century the majority of philosophers and scientists accepted the biblical story of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden as the true account of Creation and dated the age of the world at less than six thousand years. Called monogenesis, this theory presented a problem for philosophers and scientists trying to understand why people from different geographical areas manifested obvious physical differences. Initially, proponents of monogenesis argued that differences in climate led to physical differences. Formulating a sort of a pre-Darwinian notion of evolution, scientists argued that people in warmer climates became darker because they were in the sun more often. This theory, however, increasingly posed problems for residents of North America. If climate controlled skin color, then Africans living in the North should gradually become lighter skinned, and whites living in the Deep South should become darker. Furthermore, though climate might affect skin color, it could not influence hair texture and other physical features that made blacks look different from Indians or European Americans. Biblical scholars found a number of answers to the question of how races began to differentiate. They initially offered three biblical explanations, ultimately settling on the third. The first came from the story of Cain and Abel. After Cain killed Abel, God banished him and placed on him “the mark of Cain.” Some suggested that the “mark of Cain” was blackness. Another theory centered on the story of the Tower of Babel. According to this theory, when God made people speak new languages he also changed their skin color. These two theories never gained wide acceptance and ultimately were rejected in favor of a racial theory based on the story of Noah. According to the story in the book of Genesis, Noah celebrated the end of his voyage in the ark by getting drunk. While Noah was in that state, his youngest son, Ham, “saw his father's nakedness,” while his two brothers, Shem and Japheth, covered their father. When he awoke, Noah cursed not Ham but Ham's son Canaan, declaring “Cursed be Canaan; the lowest of slaves shall he be to his brothers.” He went on to declare, “Blessed be the Lord, the God of Shem; let Canaan be a slave to them. May God enlarge Japheth, and let him dwell in the tents of Shem; and let Canaan be a slave to them.” Nineteenth-century southern theologians asserted that this curse rendered Canaan and his children black. They used this text not only to explain racial differences but also to endorse slavery. This explanation of race was accepted by many white Protestants in antebellum America. Most scientists, however, rejected the biblical explanation. First, they did not accept the biblical chronology that placed the age of the earth at under six thousand years. Nor did they think that humankind stemmed from a single ancestor; instead they argued for multiple creations of people, or polygenesis. Multiple Creations, Multiple Adams, Multiple Races: Polygenetic Theories The Swiss-born Harvard biology professor Louis Agassiz (1807–1873) was a leading proponent of the doctrine of polygenesis in the United States and one of the last scientists to accept Darwinian evolution. Agassiz used polygenesis to explain the differences among human groups and to rank those groups according to intelligence or other traits. Indeed, for Agassiz the polygenetic position proved that humans were not differentiated by race but by species. By the middle of the nineteenth century Agassiz had developed his theory to include “creation centers,” which he defined as different areas of the world that were the centers for the origins of entire groups of animals, including humans. Each group, which he called a species, had its own creation. Thus, there was a black Adam, a white Adam, an Asian Adam, and so on. These creations were simultaneous, each in its own creation center, but the many Adams were by no means equal, which is why the races known in Agassiz's time could not be considered equal either. His essay in the 1850 issue of the Christian Examiner illustrates the overall meaning of his theories on polygenetic origins for race. In it he writes that it is absurd “to assume that races have the same abilities, enjoy the same powers, and show the same natural dispositions, and that in consequence of this equality they are entitled to the same position in human society.” Samuel George Morton: Ranking Races by Cranial Capacity Adding validity to Agassiz's theories was the Philadelphia medical doctor and anatomist Samuel George Morton (1799–1851). In 1830 Morton began assembling what would become one of the largest collections of human skeletal remains in the United States. Most of his collection consisted of skulls; ultimately, he had more than six hundred. In 1839 he published his first book, Crania Americana; or, A Comparative View of the Skulls of Various Aboriginal Nations of North and South America, which described his research on the skulls of Native Americans. While the introduction to that text, “Variations of the Human Species,” was not the first attempt to “scientifically” define the races, it is certainly one of the most influential early works and characterizes races in relatively strict accord with the polygenetic theories of Agassiz. Morton named and ranked the races as follows: Caucasian (whites, northern Indians), Mongolian (East Asians), Malay (South Asians and Pacific Islanders), American (Native Americans), and Ethiopian (blacks). In short, Morton's hierarchy of the races went from the lightest-skinned to the darkest-skinned peoples. In 1844 Morton published the even larger Crania Aegyptiaca; or, Observations on Egyptian Ethnography, Derived from Anatomy, History, and the Monuments. Finally, in 1849, he published an untitled review of his entire skull collection. Each work further refined his attempts to rank human groups by cranial capacity (internal size of the skull), and in each volume Europeans had the largest brains, and people of African descent (which he variously called Ethiopian, Hottentot, or Negroid) had the smallest. Initially, his methodology for measuring cranial capacity was to calculate the number of mustard seeds that would fit in the skull; in his later research he used lead shot. Not surprisingly, his results corresponded perfectly to the Great Chain of Being, showing that the race he considered inferior had the smallest brains and the race he considered superior had the largest. Morton concluded that his findings proved that people of European descent were more intelligent than people from other parts of the world. In the early 1980s the American biologist, geologist, and scientific historian Stephen Jay Gould examined Morton's raw data and recalculated his measurements. In his book The Mismeasure of Man, Gould reveals that Morton had initially found evidence that some American Indians had larger cranial capacity than Europeans. To correct what he assumed was an erroneous result, Morton increased the number of smaller skulls from South America in his mix, to lower the overall measurement of Indian skulls. Whether consciously or unconsciously, Morton manipulated his data to get the results he wanted. Gould concluded that Morton did not do this on a conscious level. This evidence illustrates how social theory and preconceived assumptions about race were at the root of “scientific” investigation. When Gould recalculated Morton's data, he found no significant differences in cranial capacity between different groups. More to the point, of course, is the understanding that cranial capacity and head size have nothing to do with intelligence or ability. Other scientists in the United States accepted the theories of Morton and Agassiz and used them to establish racial theories about African Americans. For example, Samuel Cartwright (1793–1863), a New Orleans physician, found that blacks and whites had different anatomies and contracted different diseases. In his “Report on the Diseases and Physical Peculiarities of the Negro Race,” which was published in 1851 in the New Orleans Medical and Surgical Journal, Cartwright argued that “the anatomical and physiological differences between the negro and the white man” went beyond color or external features. He claimed that their whole anatomy was different and “rendered the people of Africa unable to take care of themselves.” It also led Africans to “indolence and apathy” and “debasement of [the] mind.” He noted that blacks were prone to diseases that whites never caught, the most interesting of which was “drapetomania, or the disease causing slaves to run away.” Although the pseudoscience of Cartwright and his predecessors provided intellectual support for slavery, the end of slavery did not stop investigations of racial hierarchies. In 1866 Josiah C. Nott, a physician from Mobile, Alabama, published the Instincts of the Races, in which he contended that blacks were intellectually, morally, and biologically inferior to whites; that “the physical type, instincts, habits, and intellect of the Negro have been the same for three thousand years”; and that it was therefore “cruelty and folly for the Freedmen's Bureau to attempt to change this world of the Almighty.” The Freedmen's Bureau, established by Congress after the Civil War, was at this time setting up schools throughout the South to educate former slaves. Nott, a proslavery theorist before the Civil War, was simply applying the logic of his proslavery science to the new postwar conditions. Freedom, he argued, would lead to the destruction of blacks, because they could not survive unless they were under the control of whites. He concluded: The negro then has remained for at least 3500 years what God made him, and Exeter Halls and Freemen's Bureaus cannot change his type. His black skin, woolly head, anatomical structure, small brain, inferior intellect, and instinctive dislike to agricultural labor have characterized the race through this long lapse of time, and will continue to do so, until the Creator, in his wisdom, shall order otherwise. (Finkelman, p. 211) Charles Darwin and Race Theory Charles Darwin (1809–1882) published his classic works On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection in 1859 and Descent of Man just over a decade later. In these two revolutionary works of biology Darwin first presents, in general terms, his theories of evolution and then applies them to human beings. Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection was a stunning change in scientific thought in the nineteenth century. However, Darwin himself was never comfortable applying the theory to cultural or social traits in human populations. Strongly opposed to slavery, he felt that the application of Darwinian models to culture, as would soon be undertaken by William Graham Sumner and Lewis Henry Morgan, was a highly problematic idea at best. In his 1871 text The Descent of Man, Darwin argues for humans' close relationship with African apes (especially chimpanzees and gorillas) and concludes that this relationship must mean that all people are related. Darwin was too busy defending his theory from its detractors to point out the most obvious error made by social Darwinists, but many scholars since that time have made the point: inherent in social Darwinism is the idea of progress, and Darwinian evolution is not about progress but about change over time. The notion of progress was a popular one in the nineteenth century and can found in the theories of the social Darwinists as well as in the theories of the German philosopher Karl Marx. Lewis Henry Morgan: Synthesizing the Racial Hierarchy and Evolution Many scientists thought that evolutionary theory, or the idea that species can change over time to adapt to their environments, finally allowed for unifying the two only slightly differing theoretical perspectives of the Great Chain of Being and a hierarchy of races. Chief among the synthesizers was one of the founders of social and cultural anthropology, Lewis Henry Morgan (1818–1881). Social and cultural anthropology are the studies of human society and culture through multiple perspectives, including language, family structure, marriage patterns, and cultural history. While biologists applied Darwin's theories to the biology of a group, Morgan thought it was perfectly reasonable to apply it to cultural change over time. In his 1877 work Ancient Society, Morgan advances a complex set of criteria for ranking cultures that include issues of subsistence (where people get their food and water and where they live), forms of government, language, family structure, religion, and property. Morgan created the categories of “civilized,” “barbarian,” and “savage” and determined that European cultures and their descendants in the United States are the superior civilized types. Moving down Morgan's list, skin color gradually becomes darker: Asians and most Native North Americans are ranked as barbarians, and the people of Africa, Native Australians, and enslaved people of the Americas are savages. The most problematic assumption in Morgan's work is his idea that human societies evolve in a linear direction, beginning as savages and trying to advance along a single path toward the “civilized” European-style culture.Whoopi Goldberg discusses race.William Graham Sumner and Social Darwinism William Graham Sumner (1840–1910), one of the founders of modern American sociology, was probably most responsible for attempting to give real-world application to the theories of race maintained by the likes of Morgan. Sumner advocated social Darwinism, a theory established by the English sociologist Herbert Spencer. Sumner's form of Social Darwinism was a defense of the wealthy, whom he believed to be biologically and culturally superior to all other humans. Sumner maintained that change and reform are impossible, because certain groups of people are inherently inferior and thus beyond being helped. According to Sumner, the rich are rich because they are smarter and stronger and deserve it, and since the rich are almost exclusively of European descent, it must follow that Europeans are superior. It would be a waste of a society's resources to extend aid to the poor, because their obviously inferior biological and cultural “stock” has put them in their current positions and cannot be changed. Not surprisingly, Sumner and Morgan taught together at Yale University for much of the late nineteenth century and remained influential during that time in social scientific circles. In many ways they represent a key component in the changing attitudes toward theories of race over the course of the nineteenth century. Early in that century people of color were deemed inferior for wholly cultural reasons: they formed the wrong type of family, lived in the wrong kind of dwelling, and worshipped false gods. The new theory of race defined by Social Darwinists helped U.S. courts to justify segregation and allowed legislatures to sanction treating blacks as second-class citizens. Racial theory was also merged with business practices at this time. In the mid-1890s Frederick L. Hoffman (1865–1946), a young statistician working in the insurance industry, began gathering data on “vital and social statistics” of blacks in America. He was particularly interested in the “longevity and physiological peculiarities among the colored population.” A year after Frederick Douglass died, Hoffman, by this time the chief statistician for Prudential Insurance Company of America, published his statistical analysis of African Americans, which was informed by racial theory and designed to confirm it. In Race Traits and Tendencies of the American Negro (1896), Hoffman used mortality tables and data on disease, health, births and deaths, crime, and education to explain “the underlying causes of race progress or retrogression.” His goal was to clarify the relationship “between the superior and the inferior races.” Thus, he used the new science of statistics to prove, at least in his mind, that blacks were inferior and whites were superior. In the realm of racial theory, the age of Frederick Douglass ended much as it began—with scientists using (or, more correctly, misusing) the latest methods of their craft to prove that blacks ought to be subordinate to whites because science proved they were inferior to whites. See also Africa, Idea of; Baptism; Bible; Class; Discrimination; Ethnology; Evolution; Freedmen's Bureau; Health and Medicine; Identity; Integration; Jefferson, Thomas, on African Americans and Slavery; Language; Marriage, Mixed; Mulattoes; Native Americans and African Americans; Perfectionism; Poverty; Progress; Proslavery Thought; Racism; Reform; Religion; Religion and Slavery; Segregation; Skin Color; Sexuality; Society of Friends (Quakers) and African Americans; Stereotypes of African Americans; and Tituba.

Reference Entry.  5634 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History

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