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Public Memory of Slavery: Victims and Perpetrators in the South Atlantic By Ana Luc ...

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Public Memory of Slavery:

Introduction

The emergence of the Atlantic world is associated with the European expansion in the Americas and Africa that embraced diverse regions, cultures, languages, religions, and ethnicities.1 Traditionally, Atlantic historiography conceived the Atlantic world as a North-dominated region in which the South was very often ignored. Although the slave trade was a common element in the building of the Atlantic system, it is almost impossible to establish a common chronology for the history of this vast region. Hence, the Atlantic world remains a large and diverse area in which important social and economic inequalities predominate.

More recently, Atlanticist historians started looking more carefully at multiple Atlantic worlds, conceiving the traditional “Atlantic world” as a multidimensional zone. Although the North Atlantic world relied much more on European migrations than did the South Atlantic, especially prior to 1580 and after 1820,2 Paul Gilroy's idea of a Black Atlantic was built with the English-speaking world as a reference. According to him, the Black Atlantic is “the stereophonic, bilingual, or bifocal cultural forms originated by, but no longer the exclusive property of, blacks