Category Archives: books

Book find: Slavery By Another Name

Interview with Douglas A. Blackmon on neo-slavery in U.S. South after the end of the Civil War:

Slavery by Another Name

Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II

A Note on the Interview
We are publishing this interview courtesy of “Beneath the Surface” radio show hosted by Michael Slate on KPFK, Los Angeles. The views expressed by the author in this interview are, of course, his own, and he is not responsible for the views expressed elsewhere in this newspaper.

Douglas A. Blackmon’s new book, Slavery by Another Name – The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II (Doubleday, 2008 ) has unearthed ugly chapters of U.S. history that have been buried for decades. In graphic and truthful detail, Blackmon’s powerful book reveals the widespread use of bonded labor after the Civil War—and how this amounted to a new form of slavery that incorporated many of the same inhuman conditions of brutal confinement like shackles, whippings, hog-tying. and water torture.

Douglas A. Blackmon, the Atlanta Bureau chief of the Wall Street Journal, has written about race and especially the interplay of wealth, corporate conduct, and segregation. In 2000, the National Association of Black Journalists recognized Blackmon’s stories revealing the secret role of J.P. Morgan & Co. during the 1960s in funneling funds between a wealthy northern white supremacist and segregationists fighting the Civil Rights Movement in the South.

Originally broadcast on “Beneath the Surface” radio show hosted by Michael Slate on KPFK, Los Angeles.

Slavery By Another Name: The Reenslavement of Black Americans From The Civil War To World War II by Douglas A. Blackmon is published by Random House.

Library availability of Slavery By Another Name via OCLC World Cat.

Recent article citing “Douglas A. Blackmon” found via Google Scholar.


The Woman In Black

British Broadcasting Corporation is repeating the four part 1993 radio adaptation of Susan Hill’s The Woman In Black.

The segments will only be available on BBC7’s website for one week from broadcast. It is worth hearing. The BBC program page is here:

It is a traditional ghost story, set sometime in the last century and relying on suggestive disturbances in banal reality to construct a very personal malevolent spirit.

Hill explains on her website what elements she felt were needed to recapture a proper ghost story:

In 1982, I decided I wanted to try and write a full length ghost story in the traditional English style. I made a list of ‘ingredients’ – I don`t often write in this very conscious way but it was necessary here.

Ingredients included
1. A ghost… not a monster or a thing from outer space but the ghost of a human who was once alive and is known to have died but whose recognisable form re-appears – or occasionally is not seen but heard, or possibly even smelled.
2. The haunted house… usually isolated.
3. Weather… atmospheric weather conditions – fog, mist, snow, and of course moonlit darkness on clear nights.
4. A sceptic. A narrator or central character who begins as a sceptic or plain disbeliever and scoffer but who is gradually converted by what he or she sees and experiences of ghostly presences.

This will make you more appreciative of crafted genre writing and curious about predecessors like Daphne Du Maurier and M. R. James.

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