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New book on comparative slavery and race relations

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    The Long, Lingering Shadow: Slavery, Race, and Law in the American Hemisphere (University of Georgia Press, Studies in the Legal History of the South, 2013) by
    Message 1 of 1 , May 30, 2013
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      The Long, Lingering Shadow: Slavery, Race, and Law in the American
      Hemisphere (University of Georgia Press, Studies in the Legal History of
      the South, 2013)

      by Robert J. Cottrol,


      Students of American history know of the law’s critical role in
      systematizing a racial hierarchy in the United States. Showing that this
      history is best appreciated in a comparative perspective, The Long,
      Lingering Shadow (University of Georgia Press, February, 2013) looks at the
      parallel legal histories of race relations in the United States, Brazil,
      and Spanish America. Robert J. Cottrol takes the reader on a journey from
      the origins of New World slavery in colonial Latin America to current
      debates and litigation over affirmative action in Brazil and the United
      States, as well as contemporary struggles against racial discrimination and
      Afro-Latin invisibility in the Spanish-speaking nations of the hemisphere.

      Ranging across such topics as slavery, emancipation, scientific racism,
      immigration policies, racial classifications, and legal processes, Cottrol
      unravels a complex odyssey. By the eve of the Civil War, the U.S. slave
      system was rooted in a legal and cultural foundation of racial exclusion
      unmatched in the Western Hemisphere. That system’s legacy was later echoed
      in Jim Crow, the practice of legally mandated segregation. Jim Crow in turn
      caused leading Latin Americans to regard their nations as models of racial
      equality because their laws did not mandate racial discrimination—a belief
      that masked very real patterns of racism throughout the Americas. And yet,
      Cottrol says, if the United States has had a history of more-rigid racial
      exclusion, since the Second World War it has also had a more thorough civil
      rights revolution, with significant legal victories over racial
      discrimination. Cottrol explores this remarkable transformation and shows
      how it is now inspiring civil rights activists throughout the Americas.

      About the Author

      Robert J. Cottrol is the Harold Paul Green Research Professor of Law and
      Professor of History and Sociology at the George Washington University. He
      has lectured extensively on U.S. law at universities in Argentina and
      Brazil. His books include The Afro-Yankees: Providence’s Black Community in
      the Antebellum Era and Brown v. Board of Education: Caste, Culture, and the
      Constitution (coauthored with Raymond T. Diamond and Leland B. Ware).
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