Monday, October 22, 2001

Why Robert Carter Freed His Slaves: Talk to Address Misunderstood American Revolutionary

Chestertown, MD, October 22, 2001 — The C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience at Washington College presents "Forgetting Robert Carter: A Secret History of the American Revolution," a talk by Professor Andrew Levy of Butler University, at 4 p.m., Friday, October 26, 2001, at the College's Custom House on the corner of High and Water Streets, Chestertown. The event is free and the public is invited to attend. A reception will follow the talk.
Robert Carter III was one of the wealthiest and most powerful Virginians at the dawn of the American Revolution and distinguished himself by organizing the largest manumission of slaves in antebellum America. But Carter's motives have been ignored by historians and the place he holds among his fellow revolutionary Virginians has been largely a mystery. According to Professor Levy's recent article in the Spring 2001 issue of The American Scholar: "In the long history of antebellum America, no one else, while living, freed that many slaves; no one even came close. No one walked away from slaveholding and slavery with as much to lose." So why does Carter remain relatively unknown to students and experts of American history? Professor Levy's talk will address this question.
Andrew Levy is the Cooper Professor of English at Butler University in Indianapolis, IN, where he teaches American literature and creative writing and directs the Butler University Writer's Studio. Professor Levy is the author of "The Culture and Commerce of the American Short Story" (Cambridge University Press, 1993), co-author of the creative writing textbook "Creating Fiction" (Harcourt Brace, 1997), and co-editor of "Postmodern American Fiction: A Norton Anthology" (Norton, 1997). His articles have appeared in The American Scholar, Harper's, Dissent, and the Chicago Tribune.

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