A Defence of the Decree of the National Convention of France, For emancipating the slaves in the West Indies

This radical pamphlet by William Fox praises the "adventurous experiment" (2) of the Convention, which abolished slavery in all French colonial territories in February 1794. Fox lambasts Pitt and the British abolitionists, accusing them of passively supporting the system of colonial slavery by remaining silent on its abuses, and concludes that "the Abolition of Slavery either gradual or immediate is a measure intirely French, to them belong all the Infamy, or all the Honour" (5). Fox's defence of France was unusual at a time when most British abolitionist were attempting to distance themselves from radical French revolutionary politics.

The bookseller William Fox is believed to have been the author of the bestselling pamphlet: Address to the People of Great Britain, on the Consumption of West-India Produce (1791). He also wrote a number of pamphlets on the French Revolution, Jacobinism and Britain's war with France in the 1790s. See Timothy Whelan, 'William Fox, Martha Gurney, and Radical Discourse of the 1790s', Eighteenth Century Studies, 42:3 (2009), 397-411.

  • Date : 1794
  • Surname : Fox
  • First name : William
  • Classification : Pamphlet
  • Place of publication : London
  • Publisher : M. Gurney. D. J. Eton.
  • Language : English
  • Theme : Abolition Campaigns
  • Source : Anti-Slavery International, 'Recovered Histories' collection. Friends House Library, London. British Library.
  • Weblink : http://www.recoveredhistories.org/pamphlet1.php?page=1&orderby=MaxID&catid=55
  • Documents :
  • Key words : National Convention France Abolition Slavery 1794 Fox Radical Caribbean Colonies

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