How do racial stereotypes originate? That question lies at the heart of Robert E. May's talk, which is based on his provocative new book Yuletide in Dixie: Slavery, Christmas, and Southern Memory--an assault on lingering beliefs that southern slaveholders treated their slaves humanely and that slaves were content with their bondage. May's talk will show that to a surprising degree, such assumptions are based on stereotypes honed by southern fiction writers and memoirists after the Civil War that masters lavished Christmas feasts and presents on their slaves. May's talk will expose the fabrications in these stereotypes, revealing a dark and sometimes shocking underside to Yuletide in antebellum Dixie for slaves and masters alike.
May, Professor Emeritus of History at Purdue University, is the author of six well-received books, including John A. Quitman: Old South Crusader, which won the book prize of the Mississippi Historical Society. This will be his third talk for the Seward House Museum.
Yuletide in Dixie
- 25 South Street
- Auburn, NY 13021
- November 14, 2019
- NYS Equal Rights Heritage Center
- Free for member, $5 for public. Reservations suggested.