Modern slavery exists in a continuum with the slavery of the past: recognition of the shared heritage of slavery that has shaped the modern world challenges us to acknowledge – and act against – the continuation of slavery today.
We wanted to take this commemorative opportunity to shed some light on this extremely painful part of global and North American history, to both celebrate the purpose of the UN’s dedicated day of remembrance, and to have a chance to talk about the ways in which slavery contributed positively to the artistic development of American culture.
In which John Green teaches you about America's "peculiar institution," slavery. I wouldn't really call it peculiar. I'd lean more toward horrifying and depressing institution, but nobody asked me. John will talk about what life was like for a slave in the 19th century United States, and how slaves resisted oppression, to the degree that was possible. We'll hear about cotton plantations, violent punishment of slaves, day to day slave life, and slave rebellions. Nat Turner, Harriet Tubman, and Whipped Peter all make an appearance. Slavery as an institution is arguably the darkest part of America's history, and we're still dealing with its aftermath 150 years after it ended.
Four hundred years ago this month, the first enslaved people from Africa arrived in the Virginia colony. To observe the anniversary of American slavery, The New York Times Magazine launched The 1619 Project to reframe America’s history through the lens of slavery.
None of us alive today had any direct involvement in slavery in America, but we continue to be affected by its legacy and could even be perpetuating it in subtle, everyday ways. One of the ways the legacy of slavery manifests is through the school system.