River of Dark Dreams
Slavery and Empire in the Cotton Kingdom

Johnson, Walter
Publisher:  Belknap Press
Date Written:  26/02/2013
Year Published:  2013  
Pages:  560pp   ISBN:  978-0674045552
Resource Type:  Book
Cx Number:  CX18426

When Jefferson acquired the Louisiana Territory, he envisioned an "empire for liberty" populated by self-sufficient white farmers. Cleared of Native Americans and the remnants of European empires by Andrew Jackson, the Mississippi Valley was transformed instead into a booming capitalist economy commanded by wealthy planters, powered by steam engines, and dependent on the coerced labour of slaves. River of Dark Dreams places the Cotton Kingdom at the center of worldwide webs of exchange and exploitation that extended across oceans and drove an insatiable hunger for new lands.

Abstract: 

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Table of Contents
Introduction: Boom
1. Jeffersonian visions and nightmares in Louisianna
2. The panic of 1835
3. The steamboat sublime
4. Limits to capital
5. The runaway's river
6. Dominion
7. "The empire of the white man's will"
8. The carceral landscape
9. The material limits of "manifest destiny"
10. "The green-eyed man of destiny"
11. The ignominious effort to reopen the slave trade
Notes
Acknowledgements