Conclusion Philanthropy Recommended

Sean D. Moore

in Slavery and the Making of Early American Libraries

Published in print February 2019 | ISBN: 9780198836377
Published online April 2019 | e-ISBN: 9780191873621 | DOI:
Conclusion Philanthropy Recommended

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Revisiting both the Preface and Chapter 1, this Conclusion makes the case for questioning the eighteenth century as a theme park upon which political neo-conservatives and economic neo-liberals project their fantasies about the founders’ supposed intentions about small government and the provision of human needs by private charities instead of taxpayer-funded public programs. Arguing instead that slavery philanthropy was the origin of these ideas, and of the “charitable industrial complex” that we have today, it explains that nineteenth- and twentieth-century reformers were aware of that, and proceeded to found more progressive public cultural, educational, medical, and other kinds of institutions. The lesson we can learn from the story of slavery-funded private libraries is that we need that kind of reform again now.

Keywords: charitable industrial complex; charity; philanthropy; slavery; abolition; democratic socialism; public school; public library; neo-conservative; neo-liberal

Chapter.  2409 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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