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My Brother Slaves"Friendship, Masculinity, and Resistance in the Antebellum South"$
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Sergio A. Lussana

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780813166940

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813166940.001.0001

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Friendship, Resistance, and Runaways

Friendship, Resistance, and Runaways

(p.99) 4 Friendship, Resistance, and Runaways
My Brother Slaves

Sergio A. Lussana

University Press of Kentucky

This chapter investigates one of the most intimate areas of life for enslaved men: male friendships. These relationships played central roles in the everyday lives of enslaved men. Friendship offered enslaved men vital emotional and practical support to resist the dehumanizing features of slavery. The chapter exposes how the private world of friendship instigated and nurtured a culture oppositional to enslavement. Narratives demonstrate how male friendships were pivotal in effecting successful escapes to freedom in the North. Trusted friends plotted with one another, exchanged illicit information, and supported each other materially and emotionally before and during escapes. Many men risked their lives for their friends.

Keywords:   Slavery, Antebellum South, Male friendship, Friendship, Resistance to slavery, Slave runaways

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