THE ARCHAEOLOGY OF RESISTANCE AMONG ENSLAVED POPULATIONS THROUGH CULTURE CONTINUITY & THE FORMATION OF GROUP IDENTITY IN THE AMERICAS: AN INTERDISCIPLINARY APPROACH

Stephanie Nicole Duensing

Research output: ThesisMaster's Thesis

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Abstract

This dissertation will look at the cultural morphology of individuals relocated to the Americas as a result of the Trans Atlantic slave trade. The goal is to see how differences in the social context influence the manifestation of resistance to the dominant culture by considering the psychological elements which would have played an important role in the formation of identity. In order to establish this, archaeological evidence is reviewed within groups which remained enslaved and those who fled and took refuge in a new land.There has been much attention to this topic in recent years. However, previous research dealing with these specific regions has incorporated limited information on the psychological significance cultural continuity has within diasporic populations or how the development of these cultural differences could represent different forms of resistance to enslavement. This paper hypothesizes that there may be different manifestations of how identity is formed in the „traditional‟ enslaved population versus groups that retained some degree of agency in their departure.To do this, I will look at case studies in the Americas of archaeological evidence depicting the frequency with which cultural traditions are observed within the different contexts and the environmental factors at play in each geographic location. Current psychological identity theory will be consulted to attempt to see if any correlation exists between the self-efficacy within the different populations (those who remained in captivity, those who fled and settled in more culturally and ethnically diverse communities, and those who were legally free living as a minority to an oppressive dominant culture). The main goal is to identify whether psychological resistance and identity formation can be determined through the evidence in the archaeological record.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Manchester
Place of PublicationManchester
Publisher
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Keywords

  • identity
  • slavery
  • psychology
  • resistance
  • archaeology

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