Cover: The Legacy of Slavery at Harvard: Report and Recommendations of the Presidential Committee, from Harvard University PressCover: The Legacy of Slavery at Harvard in HARDCOVER

The Legacy of Slavery at Harvard

Report and Recommendations of the Presidential Committee

Product Details

HARDCOVER

$21.95 • £19.95 • €19.95

ISBN 9780674292406

Publication Date: 09/27/2022

Trade

288 pages

5-1/2 x 8-1/4 inches

6 photos

World

Add to Cart

Media Requests:

Related Subjects

Harvard’s searing and sobering indictment of its own long-standing relationship with chattel slavery and anti-Black discrimination.

In recent years, scholars have documented extensive relationships between American higher education and slavery. The Legacy of Slavery at Harvard adds Harvard University to the long list of institutions, in the North and the South, entangled with slavery and its aftermath.

The report, written by leading researchers from across the university, reveals hard truths about Harvard’s deep ties to Black and Indigenous bondage, scientific racism, segregation, and other forms of oppression. Between the university’s founding in 1636 and 1783, when slavery officially ended in Massachusetts, Harvard leaders, faculty, and staff enslaved at least seventy people, some of whom worked on campus, where they cared for students, faculty, and university presidents. Harvard also benefited financially and reputationally from donations by slaveholders, slave traders, and others whose fortunes depended on human chattel. Later, Harvard professors and the graduates they trained were leaders in so-called race science and eugenics, which promoted disinvestment in Black lives through forced sterilization, residential segregation, and segregation and discrimination in education.

No institution of Harvard’s scale and longevity is a monolith. Harvard was also home to abolitionists and pioneering Black thinkers and activists such as W. E. B. Du Bois, Charles Hamilton Houston, and Eva Beatrice Dykes. In the late twentieth century, the university became a champion of racial diversity in education. Yet the past cannot help casting a long shadow on the present. Harvard’s motto, Veritas, inscribed on gates, doorways, and sculptures all over campus, is an exhortation to pursue truth. The Legacy of Slavery at Harvard advances that necessary quest.

This publication was funded in part by the Presidential Initiative on Harvard and the Legacy of Slavery. Any proceeds will benefit the Royall House and Slave Quarters in Medford, Massachusetts.

Recent News

Black lives matter. Black voices matter. A statement from HUP »

From Our Blog

Composite photograph showing (top) entrance to the Prudential Center in Boston and (bottom) an internal construction partition/wall printed with the words 'Opening Day 2023' and other decorative text

A New Chapter for Harvard Book Store

Starting in the summer of 2023, for the first time in almost thirty years, Harvard Book Store will have two locations: the flagship store in Harvard Square, and a large new store in the Prudential Center in Boston. For University Press Week we wanted to show some bookseller love, so we reached out to Rachel Cass, General Manager of the Harvard Book Store, to see what’s planned for their exciting new location