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The Decline and Rise of DemocracyA Global History from Antiquity to Today$
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David Stasavage

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780691177465

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691177465.001.0001

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Democracy—and Slavery—in America

Democracy—and Slavery—in America

Chapter:
(p.225) 10 Democracy—and Slavery—in America
Source:
The Decline and Rise of Democracy
Author(s):

David Stasavage

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691177465.003.0010

This chapter explores how Americans, as a result of an intellectual effervescence, created a modern democratic state that spread to the rest of the European world. It highlights the democracy in America that emerged from earlier British ideas transplanted into a new environment. It also shows how the same underlying conditions that produced democracy for white colonists also encouraged the invention and expansion of chattel slavery. The chapter charts the development of popular assemblies in colonial America and looks into alternative interpretations of why colonial American institutions resembled early democracy. It talks about Bernard Bailyn who observed that colonial assemblies were a British practice that refracted to reflect North American conditions.

Keywords:   modern democratic state, white colonists, chattel slavery, colonial America, early democracy, Bernard Bailyn

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