Reviews for Jews and the American Slave Trade


Book News Reviews
Friedman (Jewish and Middle Eastern history, Youngstown State U.) responds to recent charges that Jews masterminded and dominated the slave trade in the US, West Indies, and South America. In opposition to the charges, he offers extensive evidence from archives and interviews. Topics include slavery in the ancient and medieval world, traditional Jewish positions on slavery, and the historic powerlessness of Jews. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.

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Choice Reviews 1998 September
In this forceful and impassioned response to the Nation of Islam's Secret Relationship between Blacks and Jews (1991), Friedman (Youngstown State Univ.) combines his own extensive primary source research in American archives with the findings of David Brion Davis and hundreds of other distinguished scholars, to document conclusively "that Jews did not dominate the slave trade in the European colonies of South America and the Caribbean or the antebellum South." Like Harold Brackman's A Ministry of Lies (1994) and the Anti-Defamation League's Jew-Hatred as History (1993), Friedman's work systematically exposes the incendiary distortions and deliberate exaggerations that characterize the Nation of Islam's antisemitic "Handbook of Hate." While his fiercely polemical tone sometimes obscures the subtleties of an argument that ranges from detailed analyses of Old Testament theology and the Code Noir to impassioned meditations on the "black Holocaust" and contemporary relations between blacks and Jews, Friedman's essential point remains clear: "when the import and sale of Africans was at its peak Jews owned less than three-one hundredths of a percent, 0.03 percent of all the slaves in America." All levels. Copyright 1999 American Library Association

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