"Black Revolution on the Sea Islands: Empire, Property, and the Emancipation of Humanity”
“Black Revolution on the Sea Islands,” historicizes practices of “freedom” and “property” amongst Gullah Geechee peoples during the Civil War and Reconstruction. It narrates Gullah Geechee peoples’ destruction of planter property, within themselves and within the land, as the destruction of property itself – as an idea, as a thing, and as an essence – an anti-proprietary freedom, whose vision encouraged Black women to rip cotton from the soil and replace it with the seeds of potatoes, peas, squash, and corn. Through an emphasis on Black collective actions during the Civil War, whose freedoms Reconstruction sought to disavow, I argue that freedom emanates not from the state but from Black struggles for a new world.
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