Family legacies: after abolition
in The bonds of family
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The epilogue for the book considers the fate of the next generation of Hibberts in the wake of the abolition of slavery. It documents their careers, marriages and inheritances. It suggests that the trans-generational slave-based wealth they benefited from provided them with both financial security and other less tangible forms of privilege including access to social networks and cultural capital. Shifting from the micro to the macro, the chapter uses the notion of the ‘implicated subject’ to argue that the nation too must grapple with the ways in which it was, and is, enriched by its participation in the business of slavery. The chapter also considers the Caribbean’s inheritance from its experience of transatlantic slavery. It argues that continued forms of oppression under colonialism and a lack of redistributive land policies led to the entrenchment of racial inequalities in the wake of abolition. The epilogue concludes with a reflection on the notion of reparative history as one way in which Europe might address the slaving past particularly in relation to the multicultural present.

The bonds of family

Slavery, commerce and culture in the British Atlantic world


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