Slavery

  • The 1619 Project Podcast from from The New York Times Magazine The 1619 Project
    This ongoing initiative that began in August 2019, the 400th anniversary of the beginning of American slavery. It aims to reframe the country’s history by placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the very center of our national narrative. The podcast supplements a book and online resources for educators and students.
  • Baskets of Cotton and Birthday Cakes: Teaching Slavery in Social Studies Classrooms by LaGarrett King & Ashley Woodson for Social Studies Education Review
    Educative-psychic violence is a concept that helps to explain the types of harm that students experience when educators teach about slavery in superficial or reductive ways. In this article, researchers examine two provocative moments involving lessons about slavery—the use of word problems involving slavery in a mathematics classroom, and the 2016 children’s book A Birthday Cake for George Washington. They offer recommendations for using educative-psychic violence as a tool to assess their own practice.
  • Black Abolitionists from Zinn Education Project
    To counter the invisibility of Black abolitionists who were central to the abolition movement and the ending of slavery, this website features two dozen Black abolitionists here.
  • Dixie's Daughters: The United Daughters of the Confederacy and the Preservation of Confederate Culture by Karen L. Cox
    This book explores the subject of Confederate memory and the role southern women played in the construction of the "Lost Cause" through their erection of monuments and the enormous influence they had on young children's education that resonates today.
  • The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism by Edward E. Baptist
    Americans tend to cast slavery as a pre-modern institution—the nation's original sin, perhaps, but isolated in time and divorced from America's later success. To do so, however, robs the millions who suffered in bondage of their full legacy. Told through intimate slave narratives, plantation records, newspapers, and the words of politicians, entrepreneurs, and escaped slaves, this book offers a radical new interpretation of American history.
  • How the Word is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America by Clint Smith
    A deeply researched and transporting exploration of the legacy of slavery and its imprint on centuries of American history, How the Word Is Passed illustrates how some of our country’s most essential stories are hidden in plain view—whether in places we might drive by on our way to work, holidays such as Juneteenth, or entire neighborhoods like downtown Manhattan, where the brutal history of the trade in enslaved men, women, and children has been deeply imprinted.
  • “If There Is No Struggle…”: Teaching A People’s History of the Abolition Movement by Bill Bigelow from Rethinking Schools
    In this lesson, students explore many of the real challenges faced by abolitionists with a focus on the American Anti-Slavery Society.
  • Teaching Hard History podcast hosted by Hasan Jeffries from Learning for Justice
    Teaching Hard History begins with the long and brutal legacy of chattel slavery and reaches through the victories of and violent responses to the civil rights movement to the present day. It brings us the lessons we should have learned in school through the voices of leading scholars and educators. ​​
  • Teach Reconstruction Campaign from Zinn Education Project
    This is a repository of adaptable lessons for grades 6-12, information about a student campaign to make Reconstruction history visible in their communities, and an annotated list of recommended teaching guides, student friendly books, primary document collections, and films.
  • They Were Her Property: White Women As Slave Owners in the American South by Stephanie E. Jones-Rogers
    Bridging women’s history, the history of the South, and African American history, this book makes a bold argument about the role of white women in American slavery: how they actively participated in the slave market, profited from it, and used it for economic and social empowerment.
  • “What Is Slavery?”: Third-grade Students’ Sensemaking About Enslavement Through Historical Inquiry by Ryan E. Hughes for Theory & Research in Social Education
    This study investigates how third-grade students developed their understandings of enslavement during a six-week social studies inquiry. The findings show that students conceptualized enslavement as interactions between individuals—such as getting whipped by an overseer or forced to work by a master—but did not focus on the systemic nature of power and economic gain, and that students' sensemaking about race was limited to naming enslaved people as African Americans without naming the enslavers as whites. These results point to the need for critical inquiries on enslavement in elementary schools that explicitly focus on systemic race/ism and white supremacy.