2017年11月30日 星期四

Princeton Digs Deep Into Its Fraught Racial History自由和奴役交織 普林斯頓大學面對自己的黑奴史

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2017/12/08 第195期 訂閱/退訂看歷史報份
紐時周報精選 Princeton Digs Deep Into Its Fraught Racial History自由和奴役交織 普林斯頓大學面對自己的黑奴史
After the Storm, a Mental Health Tempest想吞一整瓶藥丸永不醒來... 颶風留給波多黎各心靈風暴
Princeton Digs Deep Into Its Fraught Racial History自由和奴役交織 普林斯頓大學面對自己的黑奴史
文/Jennifer Schuessler

Take a tour of the idyllic campus of Princeton University, and your guide is likely to stop in front of the 18th-century clapboard building, fronted by two graceful sycamore trees, that housed the school's early presidents. The trees were planted in the spring of 1766, the legend has it, by the school's fifth president, Samuel Finley, to celebrate the repeal of the Stamp Act.

But a few months later, they were chosen as the backdrop for a rather different event: the auction of Finley's slaves.



That sale is not part of Princeton's official history. It was all but unknown until a few years ago, when researchers came across a newspaper advertisement listing the liquidation of Finley's human property, along with horses, cattle, furniture and "a choice collection of books." Now, it is one of many forgotten stories being brought to light as part of an ambitious effort to acknowledge and explore the darker aspects of Princeton's past.

In recent years, more than a dozen universities — including Brown, Harvard, Georgetown and the University of Virginia — have acknowledged their historical ties to slavery. But the Princeton and Slavery Project, officially unveiled on Monday, stands out for the depth of its research.



The project's website includes hundreds of primary source documents and more than 80 articles exploring topics like early slavery-related university funding, student demographics and the sometimes shocking history of racial violence on a campus long known as the most culturally "Southern" in the Ivy League.

Princeton's heavily Southern antebellum student body — and its desire to keep the sons of slaveholders comfortable — may have set it apart. But its deep entanglements with slavery did not.



"Princeton's history is American history writ small," said Martha Sandweiss, the history professor who led the project. "From the beginning, liberty and slavery were intertwined."

The Princeton research is being released amid renewed debate about slavery, the Civil War and national memory. It also arrives nearly two years after a student group at Princeton called the Black Justice League occupied the president's office and demanded, among other things, that Woodrow Wilson's name be removed from places of honor on campus because of his racist ideas and actions.



Wilson, a Princeton graduate and former president of the university, kept his place, and that controversy quieted down. The new research does not come with any recommendations for action. But Sandweiss said she hoped it would foster a broader, more fully informed conversation about history and racial justice.




本文關鍵詞是美國的奴隸制度(slavery)。美國的奴隸制起於17世紀初期,延續了250年,奴隸大多來自非洲,先是負責種植菸草,後來是棉花。隨著1793年使軋棉效率提高50倍的軋棉機(cotton gin)發明與歐洲對棉花需求增加,奴隸制成了美國南方的經濟基礎。

18世紀晚期,廢奴運動(abolitionist movement)在美國北方展開,南北開始為奴隸制的存廢爭執。1860年,反對蓄奴的共和黨人林肯當選總統,許多南方人預期奴隸制會被廢除,南方各州退出聯邦,導致1861年南北戰爭(Civil War)爆發。

印花稅法(Stamp Act)是英國政府於1765年頒布的對北美殖民地人民徵稅的法令,規定殖民地所有印刷品都要課稅。殖民地居民不滿被遙遠、自己不能參與的立法機關課稅,同年10月,來自9處殖民地的27名代表在紐約集會,合力撤銷印花稅法。


After the Storm, a Mental Health Tempest想吞一整瓶藥丸永不醒來... 颶風留給波多黎各心靈風暴
文/Caitlin Dickerson

Her memories of the storm came in flashes: neighbors' screams, gushing water, swimming against the current with her son.

For Milagros Serrano Ortiz, a 37-year-old grandmother with long, curly hair, the nightmare did not end there. After two days of sheltering upstairs in a house across the street, she returned home to find the walls caked with mud and a vile stench emanating from her cherished possessions, which were rotting in the heat.



Anguished and overwhelmed, she confessed recently to a psychologist at an emergency clinic that she had begun to have disturbing thoughts and worries that she might act on them.

"Like what?" the doctor asked.

Like swallowing a bottle of pills, she said, "never waking up, and not feeling pain anymore."




The violent winds and screeching rains of Hurricane Maria were a 72-hour assault on the Puerto Rican psyche. There are warning signs of a full-fledged mental health crisis on the island, public health officials say, with much of the population showing symptoms of post-traumatic stress.

Puerto Rico was already struggling with an increase in mental illness amid a 10-year recession that brought soaring unemployment, poverty and family separation caused by migration. Public health officials and caregivers say that Maria has exacerbated the problem.



Many Puerto Ricans are reporting intense feelings of anxiety and depression for the first time in their lives. Some are paranoid that a disaster will strike again. And people who had mental illnesses before the storm, and who have been cut off from therapy and medication, have seen their conditions deteriorate.

"When it starts raining, they have episodes of anxiety because they think their house is going to flood again," said Dr. Carlos del Toro Ortiz, the clinical psychologist who treated Serrano Ortiz. "They have heart palpitations, sweating, catastrophic thoughts. They think 'I'm going to drown,' 'I'm going to die,' 'I'm going to lose everything.'"



Its residents are haunted by dozens of deaths caused by the storm, and many more life-threatening near misses. The reminders are inescapable. They lie in piles of rotting debris as tall as homes that still line many streets and in cellphones that are useless for checking on family members.



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