Skip to main content
Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
American Slavery

American Slavery

1619-1877 (10th Anniversary Edition)

Peter Kolchin

Hill and Wang


Trade Paperback

The single best short survey in America, now updated.
Includes a New Preface and Afterward

In terms of accessibility and comprehensive coverage, Kolchin's American Slavery is a singularly important achievement. Now updated to address a decade of new scholarship, the book includes a new preface, afterword, and revised and expanded bibliographic essay. It remains the best book to introduce a subject of profound and lasting importance, one that lies at the center of American history.

Praise for American Slavery

“A miraculous achievement . . . A concise, well-written, and sensibly argued survey of America's greatest shame.” —The New Yorker

“Peter Kolchin's American Slavery is the best history of the 'peculiar institution' that I have ever read. Paying equal attention to the slaves and the slaveholders, it is both comprehensive and fair-minded. A master of comparative history, Kolchin brilliantly shows how American slavery was similar to, and at the same time different from, forced labor in Brazil, the Caribbean, and Russia. His splendid bibliographical essay is an indispensable guide to the vast and complex literature on slavery.” —David Herbert Donald, Charles Warren Professor of American History Emeritus, Harvard University

“This is a brilliant and masterful synthesis of scholarship on the history of slavery in America. Kolchin not only pulls together all the relevant literature but also strikes out with his own perceptive and trenchant analyses.” —August Meier, Kent State University

“A feast of deftly crafted interpretations of the many interrelated dimensions of a most complex institution that shaped and deeply scarred American society. Kolchin's masterful survey is by far the best I have seen. It will be hard to surpass.” —David Barry Gaspar, Duke University


Reviews from Goodreads

Peter Kolchin

Peter Kolchin, the Henry Clay Reed Professor of History at the University of Delaware, is the author of numerous books, most recently A Sphinx on the American Land: The Nineteenth Century South in Comparative Perspective (2003).

Peter Kolchin

Hill and Wang

Latest on Facebook