"Finery and Small Comforts": The intersection of gender, consumerism, and slavery in nineteenth century Virginia

Author(s): Lori Lee

Year: 2015

Summary

In the context of enslavement, supply constrained individual expression and consumer choice at varying scales. Within a plantation household, supply took the form of provisions selected by the master for enslaved laborers. At the scale of local markets and stores, supply and variable adherence to laws constrained which goods were available to slaves who were able to purchase or trade for them. In this paper, I synthesize historical and archaeological evidence to consider how supply and distribution impacted which goods were available to enslaved laborers in nineteenth century Virginia, particularly in the central region of the state. I also consider what choices among these goods reveal about the needs, desires, prospects, and risks of enslaved consumers.

Cite this Record

"Finery and Small Comforts": The intersection of gender, consumerism, and slavery in nineteenth century Virginia. Lori Lee. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Seattle, Washington. 2015 ( tDAR id: 434063)

Keywords

Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 480