The Resource Celia, a slave, Melton A. McLaurin, (electronic resource)

Celia, a slave, Melton A. McLaurin, (electronic resource)

Label
Celia, a slave
Title
Celia, a slave
Statement of responsibility
Melton A. McLaurin
Creator
Contributor
Subject
Language
eng
Summary
Illuminating the moral dilemmas that lie at the heart of a slaveholding society, this book tells the story of a young slave who was sexually exploited by her master and ultimately executed for his murder. Celia was only fourteen years old when she was acquired by John Newsom, an aging widower and one of the most prosperous and respected citizens of Callaway County, Missouri. The pattern of sexual abuse that would mark their entire relationship began almost immediately. After purchasing Celia in a neighboring county, Newsom raped her on the journey back to his farm. He then established her in a small cabin near his house and visited her regularly (most likely with the knowledge of the son and two daughters who lived with him). Over the next five years, Celia bore Newsom two children; meanwhile, she became involved with a slave named George and resolved at his insistence to end the relationship with her master. When Newsom refused, Celia one night struck him fatally with a club and disposed of his body in her fireplace. Her act quickly discovered, Celia was brought to trial. She received a surprisingly vigorous defense from her court-appointed attorneys, who built their case on a state law allowing women the use of deadly force to defend their honor. Nevertheless, the court upheld the tenets of a white social order that wielded almost total control over the lives of slaves. Celia was found guilty and hanged. Melton A. McLaurin uses Celia's story to reveal the tensions that strained the fabric of antebellum southern society. Celia's case demonstrates how one master's abuse of power over a single slave forced whites to make moral decisions about the nature of slavery. McLaurin focuses sharply on the role of gender, exploring the degree to which female slaves were sexually exploited, the conditions that often prevented white women from stopping such abuse, and the inability of male slaves to defend slave women. Setting the case in the context of the 1850s slavery debates, he also probes the manner in which the legal system was used to justify slavery. By granting slaves certain statutory rights (which were usually rendered meaningless by the customary prerogatives of masters), southerners could argue that they observed moral restraint in the operations of their peculiar institution. An important addition to our understanding of the pre-Civil War era, Celia, A Slave is also an intensely compelling narrative of one woman pushed beyond the limits of her endurance by a system that denied her humanity at the most basic level
Cataloging source
Midwest
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
McLaurin, Melton Alonza
Dewey number
  • 345.73/02523
  • 347.3052523
Index
no index present
Literary form
non fiction
Nature of contents
dictionaries
http://library.link/vocab/relatedWorkOrContributorName
hoopla digital
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Celia
  • Celia
  • Slavery
  • Trials (Murder)
  • Electronic books
  • Southern States
Target audience
adult
Label
Celia, a slave, Melton A. McLaurin, (electronic resource)
Link
Instantiates
Publication
Distribution
Carrier category
online resource
Carrier category code
  • cr
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Color
multicolored
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
unknown
Extent
1 online resource
Form of item
  • online
  • electronic
Governing access note
Digital content provided by hoopla
Isbn
9780820341590
Isbn Type
(electronic bk.)
Media category
computer
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • c
http://library.link/vocab/ext/overdrive/overdriveId
12442877
Publisher number
MWT12442877
Specific material designation
remote
System details
Mode of access: World Wide Web
Label
Celia, a slave, Melton A. McLaurin, (electronic resource)
Link
Publication
Distribution
Carrier category
online resource
Carrier category code
  • cr
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Color
multicolored
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
unknown
Extent
1 online resource
Form of item
  • online
  • electronic
Governing access note
Digital content provided by hoopla
Isbn
9780820341590
Isbn Type
(electronic bk.)
Media category
computer
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • c
http://library.link/vocab/ext/overdrive/overdriveId
12442877
Publisher number
MWT12442877
Specific material designation
remote
System details
Mode of access: World Wide Web

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