In this engraving, Roman and contemporary themes are combined to glorify the new emperor. The absence of any clear representation of revolutionary liberty shows Napoleon moving away from the events of the preceding decade.
This 18th century painting by Mohammad Rizā Naw'ī depicts Sati, the practice whereby an elite Hindu widow would commit suicide through self-immolation upon the death of her husband. Sati was featured prominently in European depictions of Hinduism where it reinforced “exotic” stereotypes of South Asians, and was used as an excuse to justify British Imperialism. In reality, the practice was not... Read More »
In this article, the influential newspaper The Revolutions of Paris asks if Africans and their descendants are "Born to Slavery?" as part of a general consideration of the situation in the French colonies.
During the explosion of newspaper publishing after 1789, the Revolutions of Paris consistently supported radical positions, including the abolition of slavery in articles like this one entitled "No Color Bar."
In this excerpted source, Venture Smith recalls his experiences in the slave trade as a child. This source is especially important, as Smith gives a very vivid account of slave raiding, a common practice that took place during the peak years of the slave trade in the 18th century. Smith, the son of a Guinean Prince, was sold into slavery at the young age of three by his own mother. Unable to... Read More »
In 1753, 15 year old Mary Jemison was captured by Indians along the Pennsylvania frontier during the Seven Years' War between the French, English, and Indian peoples of North America. She was adopted and incorporated into the Senecas, a familiar practice among Iroquois and other Indian peoples seeking to replace a lost sibling or spouse. Mary married and raised a family in the decades before... Read More »
Benjamin Franklin Bache, grandson on Benjamin Franklin, was a supporter of Jefferson’s Republican Party. His sympathetically summarized the situation in France during the period when Louis XVI was put on trial and executed. He defended the actions of the revolutionaries on the grounds that they were merely responding to the provocations of nobles and other "traitors." Even through the Terror... Read More »
This composition of the scene, in which a helpless Louis seems to be looking upward to heaven with his confessor, communicates humility. The executioners are relatively passive, leaving the King and confessor center stage. This reveals that in mortal death, the King had a chance to look better than his tormentors. Although this print was undoubtedly produced significantly after the fact,... Read More »