Stanley elkins, slavery: a problem in american institutional and intellectual life, 1959 sambo, the typical plantation slave, was docile but irresponsible, loyal but lazy, humble but chronically given to lying and stealing his behavior full of but in time, the thesis was both over-simplified and distorted. Rebelliousness and docility in the negro slave: a critique of the elkins thesis eugene d genovese despite the hostile reception given by historians to stanley m elkins' slavery: a problem in american institutional and intellectual life,1 it has established itself as one of the most influential historical essays of. According to elkins, “sambo, the typical plantation slave, was docile but irresponsible, loyal but lazy, humble but chronically given to lying and stealing his e walker, review of time on the cross: the economics of american negro slavery, by robert william fogel and stanley l engerman, history and theory 14, no. By stanley elkins 2nd ed chicago: university of chicago press 1968 264pp the debate over slavery: stanley elkins and his critics edited by ann j elkins' revival of the sambo stereotype produced the fiercest debate suf - fering from elkins accepted frank tannenbaum's thesis in slave and citizen. Stanley elkins' “sambo thesis,” relayed in his 1959 work slavery: a problem in american institutional and intellectual life, adopted a comparative analysis of the enslaved and jews confined to concentration camps to theorize psychopathologies that resulted from severe and cruel forms of bondage20 elkins found that the.
I had read narrative by frederick douglass in my first year of university, i was well aware of key abolitionist figures such as william lloyd garrison and the tappan brothers and i have been well acquainted with stanley elkin's sambo thesis however, i had never been made aware of solomon northup and. Thinking of material conditions stanley m elkins was probably right in saying that american slaves were much worse treated, for he clearly was thinking of other matters” (39) while genovese admired elkins' analysis, his main criticism was that some evidence for “sambo” exists in all slave societies in addition, genovese. This third edition of stanley m elkin's classic study offers two new chapters by the author the first, slavery and ideology, considers the discussion and criticism occasioned by this controversial work elkins amplifies his original purpose in writing the book and takes into consideration the substantial body of critical. It was just 21 years ago that stanley elkins published his slim book slavery, which set in motion the most profound and extensive re-examination of a subject ever undertaken by but the actual behavior of blacks as they emerged from slavery is surely the most effective way of disproving the sambo thesis.
Stanley elkins the sambo thesis definition man & thesis -dumb black man was mentally a slave -derived from behavior of jews during nazi period term richard allen definition founder of black episcopal church born slave in philidelphia converted to methodist chirch term absalom jones. After the publication of this work, the viewpoint that the american slave system was an exceptionally brutal institution became known as the “tannenbaum- elkins” thesis scholars like john blassingame, who critiqued the sambo stereotype, only lent power to the tannenbaum argument that anglo-american.
The folkloric sambo was not yet laid to rest, however it was to receive its most vigorous and robust incarnation in stanley elkins's 1959 work, slavery: a problem in american institutional and intellectual life whereas phillips had merely alluded to sambo with descriptive adjectives, elkins gave sambo. Indeed, mr boskin's analysis of sambo belongs to this historiographical perspective, and it is the antithesis of stanley elkins's interpretation william m tuttle jr berkeley, calif robert g o'meally replies: it is true that joseph boskin gives collegial nods in the direction of those historians who maintain. Sambo, the typical plantation slave, was docile but irresponsible, loyal stanley elkins has observed that gramsci's thought provides genovese with a way of bringing the slave fully into the equation without repudiating his earlier elkins' thesis represents the logical conclusions of the arguments established in the.
'stanley elkins and the elkins thesis,' 'sambo and other slave stereotypes' ( chapter) kenny, s c (2008) 'stanley elkins and the elkins thesis,' 'sambo and other slave stereotypes' in e e baptist (ed), encyclopedia of slavery in the americas (pp 120-125) new york: facts on file inc. The full title of stanley m elkins' book, published first in 1959, is slavery: a problem in american institutional and intellectual life elkins is right: slavery was and continues to be a problem in american institutional and intellectual life this is the great contribution of the book the book comprises four. Afro-american slavery: new trends in theory and research 13 merriment, a fondness for display the work of kenneth stampp, stanley elkins and eugene genovese reopened the debate on slavery re-awakened to conjure up the legacy of the rebellious slave, of sambo turned into nat turner, who.