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First released in French in 1808 and translated into English years later below the identify An Enquiry about the highbrow and ethical schools, and Literature of the Negroes, this publication used to be a touchstone for nineteenth-century abolitionists in England and the USA. Written by way of Abbe Henri Gregoire (1750-1831), it argued vigorously opposed to assumptions of black inferiority and in desire of the humanity, equality, and cultural achievements of individuals of African background. His treatise summarized many of the to be had written proposal on race as much as that point. a number one activist within the French Revolution, Gregoire mirrored in his arguments the spirit of "libertie, egalite, and fraternite" and expected twentieth-century race inquiry and conception. even though influential in its time, the 1st translation of Gregoire's paintings used to be incomplete and unsuitable. This new version provides a clean, exact, and entire textual content of this key record within the historical past of Western racial inspiration. The publication features a significant biography of Gregoire and research of the historic context within which he wrote and the effect of his paintings.

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