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Embattled FreedomJourneys through the Civil War's Slave Refugee Camps$
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Amy Murrell Taylor

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781469643625

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469643625.001.0001

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Confronting Removal

Confronting Removal

(p.83) 3 Confronting Removal
Embattled Freedom

Amy Murrell Taylor

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter focuses on the relationship between race and space—between competing ideas for how people of different races should reside spatially—by looking at the Union army’s various attempts to remove refugees en masse. These removals attempted to resettle the people in places far removed from active combat, including northern states, islands in the Mississippi River, and even Haiti. Some of these efforts bore a great deal of resemblance to antebellum colonization plans, and, as in those cases, black men and women in the Civil War largely resisted being sent away. Most of the removals were justified by white officials in environmental terms, driven by racial ideologies that linked particular climates and landscapes to people of color. The chapter also argues that removals were sometimes triggered by concerns about gender and sex too—by beliefs that the physical proximity of black women and white men in military encampments had made rape inevitable.

Keywords:   removal, Haiti, gender, sex, rape, colonization, climate, landscape, environmental, islands

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