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Exodus and LiberationDeliverance Politics from John Calvin to Martin Luther King Jr.$
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John Coffey

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199334223

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199334223.001.0001

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“Pretended Votaries for Freedom”

“Pretended Votaries for Freedom”

The Rise of Protestant Antislavery to 1807

(p.78) (p.79) 3 “Pretended Votaries for Freedom”
Exodus and Liberation

John Coffey

Oxford University Press

The revolutionary assault on “political slavery” had an unintended consequence: it drew attention to the enslavement of black Africans by white Protestants. Although this moral contradiction aroused unease as early as the 1650s, it was not until the American Revolution that an antislavery movement began to coalesce. It was at this juncture that white abolitionists and black Protestants latched onto Exodus, Jubilee, and the New Testament language of liberty, turning them against the institution of chattel slavery. Protestant deliverance politics was a major source of the contagion of liberty in the 1770s and 1780s, and by 1808 both the American and the British transatlantic slave trade had been abolished.

Keywords:   slavery, slave trade, Quakers, Evangelicals, antislavery, abolitionists, African Americans, William Wilberforce

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