Category Archives: Maps

The Black Atlantic (220/303)

Here is some background to our discussion about Afrofuturism, taken from a lecture I gave a couple of years ago.

Maritime Culture, America, and the Black Atlantic

“The Oceanic Revolution”: the opening of the Western Hemisphere to exploration and colonization was a world historical event. The central figures of this revolution were sailors and the enslaved.

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Absolut Land Grab (HUM225)


Above: the advertisement that drove US nationalists into a frenzy.

And here is the lie that killed thousands and changed history:

“Mexico has passed the boundary of the United States, has invaded our territory and shed American blood upon the American soil.” — Pres. James Polk May 11, 1846

As Sen. Abraham Lincoln noted some time later, “The whole of this,–issue and evidence–is, from beginning to end, the sheerest deception.”

Bits&Pieces (HUM225)

Narratives like The Life and Adventures of Joaquin Murieta, the Celebrated California Bandit provide us with a basis for understanding the ways that popular culture in its most general sense– as the culture of the popular classes, i.e., the people– dramatize and question socio-historical forces.

One of the roots of the land-grab that we’ve come to call the Mexican-American War concerns the spread of chattel slavery and the maintenance of the political and economic powers of the slaver class. The Republic of Texas was founded by slave-owners who wouldn’t abide by Mexican law, which in 1829 outlawed chattel slavery.

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