This maritime history "from below" exposes the history-making power
of common sailors, slaves, pirates, and other outlaws at sea in the era
of the tall ship.
In Outlaws of the Atlantic,
award-winning historian Marcus Rediker turns maritime history upside
down. He explores the dramatic world of maritime adventure, not from the
perspective of admirals, merchants, and nation-states but from the
viewpoint of commoners sailors, slaves, indentured servants, pirates,
and other outlaws from the late seventeenth to the early nineteenth
century. Bringing together their seafaring experiences for the first
time, Outlaws of the Atlantic is an unexpected and compelling peoples history of the age of sail.
With his signature bottom-up approach and insight, Rediker reveals how
the motley that is, multiethnic crews were a driving force behind the
American Revolution; that pirates, enslaved Africans, and other outlaws
worked together to subvert capitalism; and that, in the era of the tall
ship, outlaws challenged authority from below deck.
bringing these marginal seafaring characters into the limelight, Rediker
shows how maritime actors have shaped history that many have long
regarded as national and landed. And by casting these rebels by sea as
cosmopolitan workers of the world, he reminds us that to understand the
rise of capitalism, globalization, and the formation of race and class,
we must look to the sea.
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