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Black Prometheus | Zookal Textbooks | Zookal Textbooks
  • Author(s) Jared Hickman
  • SubtitleRace and Radicalism in the Age of Atlantic Slavery
  • Edition
  • Published11th August 2016
  • PublisherOxford University Press USA
  • ISBN9780190272586

Race and Radicalism in the Age of Atlantic Slavery

How did an ancient mythological figure who stole fire from the gods become a face of the modern, lending his name to trailblazing spaceships and radical publishing outfits alike? How did Prometheus come to represent a notion of civilizational progress through revolution--scientific, political, and spiritual--and thereby to center nothing less than a myth of modernity itself ? The answer Black Prometheus gives is that certain features of the myth--its
geographical associations, iconography of bodily suffering, and function as a limit case in a long tradition of absolutist political theology--made it ripe for revival and reinvention in a historical moment in which
freedom itself was racialized, in what was the Age both of Atlantic revolution and Atlantic slavery. Contained in the various incarnations of the modern Prometheus--whether in Mary Shelley's esoteric novel, Frankenstein, Denmark Vesey's real-world recruitment of slave rebels, or popular travelogues representing Muslim jihadists against the Russian empire in the Caucasus-- isa profound debate about the means and ends of liberation in our globalized world. Tracing the titan's
rehabilitation and unprecedented exaltation in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries across a range of genres and geographies turns out to provide a way to rethink the relationship between race, religion, and
modernity and to interrogate the Eurocentric and secularist assumptions of our deepest intellectual traditions of critique.

Black Prometheus

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  • Author(s) Jared Hickman
  • SubtitleRace and Radicalism in the Age of Atlantic Slavery
  • Edition
  • Published11th August 2016
  • PublisherOxford University Press USA
  • ISBN9780190272586

Race and Radicalism in the Age of Atlantic Slavery

How did an ancient mythological figure who stole fire from the gods become a face of the modern, lending his name to trailblazing spaceships and radical publishing outfits alike? How did Prometheus come to represent a notion of civilizational progress through revolution--scientific, political, and spiritual--and thereby to center nothing less than a myth of modernity itself ? The answer Black Prometheus gives is that certain features of the myth--its
geographical associations, iconography of bodily suffering, and function as a limit case in a long tradition of absolutist political theology--made it ripe for revival and reinvention in a historical moment in which
freedom itself was racialized, in what was the Age both of Atlantic revolution and Atlantic slavery. Contained in the various incarnations of the modern Prometheus--whether in Mary Shelley's esoteric novel, Frankenstein, Denmark Vesey's real-world recruitment of slave rebels, or popular travelogues representing Muslim jihadists against the Russian empire in the Caucasus-- isa profound debate about the means and ends of liberation in our globalized world. Tracing the titan's
rehabilitation and unprecedented exaltation in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries across a range of genres and geographies turns out to provide a way to rethink the relationship between race, religion, and
modernity and to interrogate the Eurocentric and secularist assumptions of our deepest intellectual traditions of critique.
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