The Sublettes have managed to coin the brutal economic system that kept the institution of slavery alive as the “capitalized womb” (p. 24). They argue that the “capitalized womb” illustrates how enslaved women’s bodies served as the engine of the slave breeding industry and powered a global economy for cotton consumption. Their new book ties the violent experiences of enslaved women directly to the market. It tells the brutal story of how the slave industry made the reproductive labor of the people it referred to as “breeding women” essential to the country’s expansion. They contend: “In a land without silver, gold, or trustworthy paper money, enslaved women’s children and their children’s children into perpetuity were used as human savings accounts that functioned as the basis of money and credit.” In short, slaves were money.
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