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Runaway Genres: The Global Afterlives of Slavery

Tracks the emergence of slavery as the defining template through which current forms of human rights abuses are understood.

By Yogita Goyal

We now live in an era where slavery is seemingly everywhere: a fit subject for solemn memorials, irreverent comedy, imaginative reconstruction, an allegory of contemporary racial politics, or an enterprise of painstaking fact-finding for historians. To fathom forms of freedom and bondage today–from unlawful detention to sex trafficking to the refugee crisis to genocide–professor Goyal reads a vast range of contemporary literature, showing how the literary forms used to tell these stories derive from the antebellum genre of the slave narrative.

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