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The Women's FightThe Civil War's Battles for Home, Freedom, and Nation$
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Thavolia Glymph

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781469653631

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2022

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469653631.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 04 July 2022

Black Women Refugees

Black Women Refugees

Making Freedom in Union Lines

(p.221) Chapter Seven Black Women Refugees
The Women's Fight

Thavolia Glymph

University of North Carolina Press

Enslaved women acted on the belief that the war was about slavery and that their freedom was in the balance. They persisted in their efforts to build communities that stood as sites of resistance against both Confederate attack and Union policies that discouraged their search for and experience of freedom. Long before the Emancipation Proclamation, enslaved women put emancipation on the nation’s wartime agenda by making their own “actual freedom.” The path to “actual freedom” was deeply gendered due to the policies and orders coming from the Union Army and U.S. Congress that stipulated the gendered terms that circumscribed black women’s freedom. These policies sent enslaved women on a path to freedom distinct from that of enslaved men. Enslaved women experienced a gendered “actual freedom” in refugee camps, through their labor, and through violence.

Keywords:   Enslaved women, Black women, Emancipation, Gender, Refugee camps, Labor, Violence, “Actual Freedom”, Resistance, Freedom

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