Emancipations, Reconstructions, and Revolutions

African American Politics and U.S. History in the Long 19th Century

Friday, February 10, 2017, 10:30 am – 5 pm,
CUNY Graduate Center, 9100: Skylight Room
365 Fifth Ave, New York NY 10016

Emancipations, Reconstructions, and Revolutions gathers students of US politics and African-American life to consider collectively not whether but how, when, and with what lasting effects African Americans participated in the politics of the early, ante- and post-bellum republic. It will bring together various historiographical revisions now in process, including the recognition that the American Revolution was a violent civil war shaped in part by slavery and black participation, and that the Civil War and Reconstruction of 1861-1877 typify rather than divide the middle period of American history. The Revolutionary settlement of half-slave and half-free thus defines a first Emancipation and first Reconstruction, part of a single “long” process beginning in the North at the end of the eighteenth century and culminating in the South with the consolidation of the Jim Crow regime in the early twentieth century.

The conference begins in New York (Friday, Feb. 10) and continues the next day in Philadelphia (Sat. Feb. 11). In traveling between New York  and Philadelphia, the conference suggests a theme that emerges in the presentations: the mobile dimensions of African American politics during the long nineteenth century.

Papers for this conference will be precirculated and only briefly summarized by the presenters. Copies will be made available online to those who preregister for the conference. Attendees are strongly encouraged to read the papers in advance to participate fully in these sessions.

For more information about the conference or to register, please visit the conference website at:


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