The Masters and the Slaves theorizes the interface of plantation relations with nationalist projects throughout the Americas. In readings that cover a wide range of genres - from essays and scientific writing to poetry, memoirs and the visual arts - this work investigates the post-slavery discourses of Brazil, the United States, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Haiti and Martinique. Indebted to Orlando Patterson's Slavery and Social Death (1982) and Paul Gilroy's The Black Atlantic (1993), these essays fill a void in studies of plantation power relations for their comparative, interdisciplinary approach and their investment in reading slavery through the gaze of contemporary theory, with particularly strong ties to psychoanalytic and gender studies interrogations of desire and performativity.

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