The lush landscape and subtropical climate of the Georgia
coast only enhance the air of mystery enveloping some of its
inhabitants-people who owe, in some ways, as much to Africa as to
America. As the ten previously unpublished essays in this volume
examine various aspects of Georgia lowcountry life, they often
engage a central dilemma: the region's physical and cultural
remoteness helps to preserve the venerable ways of its black
inhabitants, but it can also marginalize the vital place of
lowcountry blacks in the Atlantic World.
The essays, which range in coverage from the founding of the
Georgia colony in the early 1700s through the present era, explore
a range of topics, all within the larger context of the Atlantic
world. Included are essays on the double-edged freedom that the
American Revolution made possible to black women, the lowcountry as
site of the largest gathering of African Muslims in early North
America, and the coexisting worlds of Christianity and conjuring in
coastal Georgia and the links (with variations) to African
A number of fascinating, memorable characters emerge, among them
the defiant Mustapha Shaw, who felt entitled to land on Ossabaw
Island and resisted its seizure by whites only to become embroiled
in struggles with other blacks; Betty, the slave woman who, in the
spirit of the American Revolution, presented a "list of grievances"
to her master; and S'Quash, the Arabic-speaking Muslim who arrived
on one of the last legal transatlantic slavers and became a head
man on a North Carolina plantation.
Published in association with the Georgia Humanities Council.
Subjects: History, Sociology
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