Dark Bargain: Slavery, Profits and the Struggle for the Constitution

Dark Bargain Slavery Profits and the Struggle for the Constitution An eye opening examination of America s foundation On September at the State House in Philadelphia thirty nine men from twelve states after months of often bitter debate signed America s

  • Title: Dark Bargain: Slavery, Profits and the Struggle for the Constitution
  • Author: Lawrence Goldstone
  • ISBN: 9780802714602
  • Page: 387
  • Format: Hardcover
  • An eye opening examination of America s foundation On September 17, 1787, at the State House in Philadelphia, thirty nine men from twelve states, after months of often bitter debate, signed America s Constitution Yet very few of the delegates, at the start, had had any intention of creating a nation that would last Most were driven by pragmatic, regional inteAn eye opening examination of America s foundation On September 17, 1787, at the State House in Philadelphia, thirty nine men from twelve states, after months of often bitter debate, signed America s Constitution Yet very few of the delegates, at the start, had had any intention of creating a nation that would last Most were driven by pragmatic, regional interests than by idealistic vision Many were meeting for the first time, others after years of contention, and the inevitable clash of personalities would be as intense as the advocacy of ideas or ideals.No issue was of greater concern to the delegates than that of slavery it resounded through debates on the definition of treason, the disposition of the rich lands west of the Alleghenies and the admission of new states, representation and taxation, the need for a national census, and the very make up of the legislative and executive branches of the new government As Lawrence Goldstone provocatively makes clear in Dark Bargain, to a significant and disquieting degree, America s most sacred document was molded and shaped by the most notorious institution in its history Goldstone chronicles the forging of the Constitution through the prism of the crucial compromises made by men consumed with the needs of the slave economy As the daily debates and backroom conferences in inns and taverns stretched through July and August of that hot summer and as the philosophical leadership of James Madison waned Goldstone clearly reveals how tenuous the document was, and how an agreement between unlikely collaborators John Rutledge of South Carolina, and Roger Sherman and Oliver Ellsworth of Connecticut got the delegates past their most difficult point Dark Bargain recounts an event as dramatic and compelling as any in our nation s history.

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      Published :2021-01-21T22:16:08+00:00

    About “Lawrence Goldstone”

    1. Lawrence Goldstone

      Lawrence Goldstone is the author of fourteen books of both fiction and non fiction Six of those books were co authored with his wife, Nancy, but they now write separately to save what is left of their dishes.Goldstone s articles, reviews, and opinion pieces have appeared in, among other publications, the Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Miami Herald, Hartford Courant, and Berkshire Eagle He has also written for a number of magazines that have gone bust, although he denies any cause and effect.His first novel, Rights, won a New American Writing Award but he now cringes at its awkward prose Anatomy of Deception and The Astronomer are much better Despite a seemingly incurable tendency to say what s on his mind thus mortifying Nancy , Goldstone has been widely interviewed on both radio and television, with appearances on, among others, Fresh Air NPR , To the Best of Our Knowledge NPR , The Faith Middleton Show NPR , Tavis Smiley PBS , and Leonard Lopate WNYC His work has also been profiled in The New York Times, The Toronto Star, numerous regional newspapers, Salon, and Slate.Goldstone holds a PhD in American Constitutional Studies from the New School His friends thus call him DrG, although he can barely touch the rim Sigh Can t make a layup any either He and his beloved bride founded and ran an innovative series of parent child book groups, which they documented in Deconstructing Penguins He has also been a teacher, lecturer, senior member of a Wall Street trading firm, taxi driver, actor, quiz show contestant, and policy analyst at the Hudson Institute.He is a unerring stock picker Everything he buys instantly goes down.

    646 thoughts on “Dark Bargain: Slavery, Profits and the Struggle for the Constitution”

    1. Welcome to the second entry in my self-imposed reading project, the History of Slavery in America. First and foremost, this project is part of my commitment to overacting to things that happen to me on the internet. Secondly, I hope to learn a few things, and to curate a list of books that can transport an interested reader through the history of slavery in America (hence my on-the-nose, passively-styled project title). I detailed the genesis of this project in my review of Robert Pierce Forbesā [...]


    2. The desire of the southern states to keep slavery going was the biggest driver of what ended up in our Constitution, argues Goldstone convincingly. That idea you had about how high-minded and idealistic the Founding Fathers were - well, put it away. Most of them were motivated by the economic interests of their own state and region, far more than by the idea of forming a union. James Madison was seemingly one of the few who was motivated solely or mostly by his wishes for union, and it was preci [...]


    3. In this fascinating, but sad, account of the writing of the Constitution that transformed thirteen colonies into the United States of America, Goldstone presents an engrossing account of the people and the process of the event. The early colonists come alive in the details that Goldstone provides aided by the pictures of them throughout the book. The sadness comes from the issue that makes it a dark bargain. Slavery is central to the story. The representatives from the five southern states were [...]


    4. Fascinating examination of the development of the US Constitution, reminding us once again why there are two things -- legislation and sausage--we'd prefer not to see made. Includes really interesting character and background sketches of convention delegates and focuses heavily on those that most participated and were most influential, rather than history's heavy hitters, such as Washington and Franklin. Displayed how slavery, our national sin, was a driving force and dealbreaker in the proceedi [...]


    5. An excellent discussion of the Articles of Confederation and its short comings and the process of writing and passing the United States Constitution. The role of slavery is addressed as are several other issues. An excellent read on the Constitution.


    6. Smartly written and carefully researched. A recommended read to anyone -- particularly those who often invoke "what the Founders intended." As Goldstone proves, the Constitution isn't an infallible document sprung out of the founders' head, but instead a record of compromise and self-interest. Very very engaging.



    7. Review carried forward from "I'm Reading"I really enjoyed this book, a detailed but brief look at how the topic of slavery wove through the Constitutional Convention. Firstly, the book is an enjoyable overall primer on the convention itself, and its evolution over the summer of 1787 - from an expansive, gentlemanly discussion to a pragmatic, self-interested, knockdown negotiation.Madison, usually credited as the father of the Constitution because of his role in bringing the convention together a [...]


    8. Dark Bargain has an interesting premise, to dig into the framing of the Constitution by evaluating it from an economic perspective which of course would be tied to our predominant trade, slavery. The book does a good job, of confronting the realities of building a free nation on the backs of enslaved people. It fleshes out characters beyond the usual suspects i.e. Madison, Jay, etc. It fails however in humanizing enslaved peoples and shedding a real light on the human toil of slavery. It's a goo [...]


    9. Goldstone's thesis is that slavery had a huge impact on the Constitutional Convention. It shaped not only the three-fifths clause, but debates over tariffs, westward expansion (the South always had an eye to whether future states would be free or slave), and even the definition of treason (earlier drafts could have made it possible for states to define abolitionism as treason). I've seen some of this touched on elsewhere (Gary Wills The Negro President shows the impact of the three-fifths clause [...]


    10. I think Goldstone's argument that slavery played a crucial role in the outcomes of the Constitutional Convention holds up well throughout this short book, and I learned an incredible amount about the participants and the circumstances of that seminal event in U.S. history. Still, there was something not quite rigorous enough about it that sort of nagged at me now and again. In any event, it's not going to stop me from delving into his "Inherently Unequal" when I get the chance.


    11. Well written and a good example of what went on in the early days of our nation and how the institution of slavery shaded even one of our founding documents. The seeds of dissent and disagreement that would blossom into the Civil War are clearly already planted before Washington even took office as President.


    12. This book contains the kind of information that every American student should learn in school but sadly does not. It explains clearly and concisely the bargains that were made between large states and small states and north and south with regard to slavery. Utterly fascinating reading. IN fact, I am getting ready to re-read this book. I highly recommend it.


    13. so sensible that it fails to challenge readers' illusions or to provoke thought beyond the text. maybe i'd've been more surprised if i was a honkycommended for: honkies


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