Speaking

Slavery in America: Then and Now

Hosted by Donnell Edwards | November 16, 2017

The CWR Network and Donell Edwards: VIEWPOINTS is proud to present nationally recognized and award winning author Dr. Daina Ramey Berry, who is an Associate Professor of History and African and African Diaspora Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Berry is a specialist in the history of gender and slavery in the United States with a particular emphasis on the social and economic history of the nineteenth century. Dr. Berry has appeared on several syndicated radio and television shows including NPR, NBC, PBS, C-SPAN, and the History Channel. Dr. Berry's phenomenal book, The Price for their Pound of Flesh: The Value of the Enslaved, from the Womb to the Grave, in the Building of a Nation, is the first book to explore an enslaved person's ascribed value throughout their lifespan, including before birth and after death. During this very special program we will discuss with Dr. Berry slavery in America, then and now; the divisive racial climate in America; and the plantation mentality still prevalent among many black and white people in America. Don't miss this powerful and educational program.

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Slavery and Public Memory

By Marguerite Gallorini | October 19, 2017

The University of Virginia and its Commission on Slavery teamed up with the Slave Dwelling Project to organize a symposium called “Universities, Slavery, Public Memory and the Built Landscape.” This four-day conference will end with a field trip to Montpelier, Monticello and Highland on Saturday. WMRA’s Marguerite Gallorini was at the opening reception Wednesday [October 18] and filed this report.

This symposium on slavery started with a little history of the cadaver trade. Texas Professor Daina Ramey Berry talked about this trade where big medical schools like Harvard and New York purchased the corpses of slaves for dissection for anatomy classes. Read more...

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Live Radio Interview

September 28, 2017

Discussing her new book, research, archives, and more, Dr. Berry will be speaking live on Blog Talk Radio on September 28. Mark your calendar--the conversation is sure to intrigue.

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Peace in Schools and the Marketing of Enslaved Bodies

Hosted by John Shuck | June 9, 2017

Caverly Morgan discusses the Peace in Schools program in Portland. Professor Daina Ramey Berry talks about her book, "The Price for Their Pound of Flesh: The Value of the Enslaved, from Womb to Grave, in the Building Of A Nation."

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Caverly Morgan is the founding director of Peace in Schools. In 2014, Peace in Schools launched the first for-credit high school mindfulness course in the nation. And that is right here in Portland. She leads the Peace in Schools teaching team, develops our mindfulness curricula, and works directly with teens.

Daina Ramey Berry is an associate professor of history and African and African Diaspora Studies, at the University of Texas at Austin. She is the author of The Price for Their Pound of Flesh: The Value of the Enslaved, from Womb to Grave, in the Building Of A Nation.

Author returns to Davis to present book on slave trade

By Special to the Enterprise | May 26, 2017

Daina Ramey Berry will speak at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 27, at The Avid Reader to present her book, “The Price for Their Pound of Flesh: The Value of the Enslaved, From Womb to Grave, in the Building of a Nation.”

Dr. Daina Ramey Berry, Avid Reader, Davis California

Berry, an associate professor of history at the University of Texas, grew up in Davis; her parents are Mel and Felicenne Ramey. Her research focuses on 19th-century American history, comparative slavery and Southern history, with a particular emphasis on the role of gender, labor, family and economy among the enslaved.

Slaves were commodities, their monetary value assigned based on their age, gender, health and the demands of the market. According to the publisher, Becon Press, “The Price for Their Pound of Flesh” is the first book to explore the economic value slaves through every phase of their lives — birth through death — in the early American domestic slave trade. Read more...

New Books Network Interview: The Price for Their Pound of Flesh

By James Stancil | April 5, 2017

A profoundly humane look at an inhumane institution, The Price for Their Pound of Flesh: The Value of the Enslaved, from Womb to Grave, in the Building of a Nation (Beacon Press, 2017) will have a major impact how we think about slavery, reparations, capitalism, nineteenth-century medical education, and the value of life and death. Slaves were commodities, their monetary value assigned based on their age, gender, health, and the demands of the market. This is the first book to explore the economic value of enslaved people through every phase of their lives including preconception, infancy, childhood, adolescence, adulthood, the senior years, and death in the early American domestic slave trade.

Covering the full life cycle, historian and author Daina Ramey Berry shows the lengths to which enslavers would go to maximize profits and protect their investments. Illuminating ghost values or the prices placed on dead enslaved people, Berry also explores the little-known domestic cadaver trade and traces the illicit sales of dead bodies to medical schools. This book is the culmination of more than ten years of Berry’s exhaustive research on enslaved values, drawing on data unearthed from sources such as slave-trading records, insurance policies, cemetery records, and life insurance policies. Writing with sensitivity and depth, Ramey Berry resurrects the voices of the enslaved and provides a rare window into enslaved people’s experiences and thoughts, revealing how enslaved people recalled and responded to being appraised, bartered, and sold throughout the course of their lives. Read more...

V Books: Prof. Daina Berry’s New Book Discusses The Monetary Value Of Slaves

By Darryl Robertson | March 14, 2017

Professor Daina Ramey Berry, Associate Professor of History and African and African Diaspora Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, has churned out some breathtaking research on slavery with her new book, The Price for Their Pound of Flesh: The Value of the Enslaved, from Womb to Grave, in the Building of a Nation (Beacon Press).

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Prof. Berry, who has authored four books on the history of slavery, centers The Price for Their Pound of Flesh on the fluctuating prices of slaves. Here, she looks at life insurance policies, slave trading records as well as examines ways in which slaves purposely decreased their value.

VIBE spoke with Prof. Berry about The Price for Their Pound of Flesh. During our brief interview, the author of Swing the Sickle for the Harvest is Ripe: Gender and Slavery in Antebellum Georgia (University of Illinois Press) and Slavery and Freedom in Savannah (University of Georgia Press), among other publications, shed light on her research interests, slave auctions, monetary value of slaves, and much more.
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Authors explore the debate around reparations for slavery

By Valerie Chavez | March 2, 2017

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Daina Ramey Berry and Ray Winbush led a panel on the complex history of slavery in the United States at Red Emma’s Bookstore Coffeehouse on Saturday, Feb. 25th. The discussion revolved around providing reparations for slavery, which involves making amends for the abuses that black slaves faced in the past.

Berry and Winbush both read excerpts from their recent books, explored their respective ideas and fielded questions from the audience.

Berry is an associate professor of history and African diaspora studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Her book, The Price for Their Pound of Flesh: The Value of the Enslaved, from Womb to Grave, in the Building of a Nation, explores how slaves were often bought and sold like commodities throughout their lives.

In order to set-up the proper historical backdrop for the discussion, the event began with Berry reading from her book.

“The book is structured around trying to understand when enslaved people realized or gained some type of understanding that they were [being] treated as human commodities.” she said.

Berry shared slave narratives where people explored their positions in society and the effect of being treated as commodities. Read more...

The Price for Their Pound of Flesh: A New Book on the Value of the Enslaved

By Ibram X. Kendi | January 24, 2017

The author of The Price for Their Pound of Flesh is Daina Ramey Berry. Professor Berry is an associate professor of history and African and African diaspora studies and the George W. Littlefield Fellow in American History at the University of Texas at Austin.

Dr Daina Ramey Berry
An award-winning historian, she is also a Distinguished Lecturer for the Organization of American Historians. Berry is a specialist in the history of gender and slavery in the United States with a particular emphasis on the social and economic history of the nineteenth century.

Her first book, Swing the Sickle for the Harvest is Ripe: Gender and Slavery in Antebellum Georgia (University of Illinois Press, 2007), examined slave labor, family, and community in two distinct regions. She is also the editor-in-chief of the award-winning book Enslaved Women in America: An Encyclopedia (ABC-Clio, 2012), and she published the award-winning volume Slavery and Freedom in Savannah (University of Georgia Press, 2014), edited with Leslie Harris. In addition, Berry has appeared on several syndicated radio and television shows, including NPR, NBC, PBS, C-SPAN, and the History Channel. She is an advocate for public history and served as one of the technical advisers for the remake of the Roots mini-series, which aired in the summer of 2016. Follow Professor Berry on Twitter @DainaRameyBerry. Read more...

"Freedom Ain't Never Been Free!" The Martin Luther King Jr. Sunrise Celebration

By George M. Eberhart | January 23, 2017

The Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Observance and Sunrise Celebration has been a staple each Monday at the ALA Midwinter Meeting for the past 17 years. Sponsored by the Social Responsibilities Round Table and the Black Caucus of the American Library Association, the celebration’s theme in Atlanta was “Freedom Ain’t Never Been Free!” and featured short readings from King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” and other sermons, speeches, and writings. Some 200 turned out at 6:30 a.m. for the observance.

Dr. Daina Ramey Berry, ALA Midwinter Meeting 2017

The keynote speaker was Daina Ramey Berry, associate professor of history and African and African diaspora studies at the University of Texas at Austin and author of The Price for Their Pound of Flesh (2017), a history of the economic value of slaves from birth to death.

“Slavery does not stop people from fighting for freedom,” Berry said. In her book she wanted to explore the “faith and hope of those held captive. What can we learn from them?” One of her sources of inspiration was a slave named Mingo, who was thrown into prison prior to being sold and separated from his family. Read more...