9780521850650

The Mind of the Master Class: History and Faith in the Southern Slaveholders' Worldview

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780521850650

  • ISBN10:

    0521850657

  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2005-10-17
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
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Summary

The Mind of the Master Class tells of America's greatest historical tragedy. It presents the slaveholders as men and women, a great many of whom were intelligent, honorable, and pious. It asks how people who were admirable in so many ways could have presided over a social system that proved itself an enormity and inflicted horrors on their slaves. The South had formidable proslavery intellectuals who participated fully in transatlantic debates and boldly challenged an ascendant capitalist ('free-labor') society. Blending classical and Christian traditions, they forged a moral and political philosophy designed to sustain conservative principles in history, political economy, social theory, and theology, while translating them into political action. Even those who judge their way of life most harshly have much to learn from their probing moral and political reflections on their times - and ours - beginning with the virtues and failings of their own society and culture.

Author Biography

Elizabeth Fox-Genovese is Eleonore Raoul Professor of the Humanities at Emory University, where she was founding director of Women's Studies.

Table of Contents

Preface ix
List of Abbreviations
xii
Prologue 1(10)
PART ONE: CRADLED IN THE STORMS OF REVOLUTION
``That Terrible Tragedy''
11(30)
The Age of Revolution through Slaveholding Eyes
41(28)
``The Purest Sons of Freedom''
69(56)
Entr'acte: The Bonds of Slavery
88(37)
PART TWO: THE INESCAPABLE PAST
History as Moral and Political Instruction
125(45)
The Slaveholders' Quest for a History of the Common People
170(31)
World History and the Politics of Slavery
201(24)
History as the Story of Freedom
225(24)
PART THREE: ANCIENT LEGACIES, MEDIEVAL SENSIBILITY, MODERN MEN
In the Shadow of Antiquity
249(56)
Coming to Terms with the Middle Ages
305(24)
The Chivalry
329(36)
Chivalric Slave Masters
365(18)
Chivalric Politics: Southern Ladies Take Their Stand
383(26)
PART FOUR: A CHRISTIAN PEOPLE DEFEND THE FAITH
A Christian People
409(35)
Unity and Diversity among the Faithful
444(29)
War over the Good Book
473(32)
Slavery: Proceeding from the Lord
505(23)
The Holy Spirit in the Word of God
528(38)
Jerusalem and Athens -- Against Paris
566(21)
Serpent in the Garden: Liberal Theology in the South
587(26)
Theopolitics: Golden Rule, Higher Law, and Slavery
613(23)
Coda: St. John of Pottawatamie
636(13)
PART FIVE: AT THE RUBICON
Between Individualism and Corporatism: From the Reformation to the War for Southern Independence
649(31)
Past and Future Caesars
680(31)
Epilogue: King Solomon's Dilemma 711(8)
Supplementary References 719(74)
Index 793

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