Book cover of The Price for Their Pound of Flesh: The Value of the Enslaved, from Womb to Grave, in the Building of a Nation by Daina Ramey Berryby Daina Ramey Berry
@DainaRameyBerry

Groundbreaking look at slaves as commodities through every phase of life, from birth to death and beyond, in early America

In life and in death, slaves were commodities, their monetary value assigned based on their age, gender, health, and the demands of the market. The Price for Their Pound of Flesh is the first book to explore the economic value of enslaved people through every phase of their lives—including preconception, infancy, childhood, adolescence, adulthood, the senior years, and death—in the early American domestic slave trade. Covering the full “life cycle,” historian Daina Ramey Berry shows the lengths to which enslavers would go to maximize profits and protect their investments. Illuminating “ghost values” or the prices placed on dead enslaved people, Berry explores the little-known domestic cadaver trade and traces the illicit sales of dead bodies to medical schools.

Interview with the Author

Podcast Art for the New Book NetworkNew Books Network 
Daina Ramey Berry, “The Price for Their Pound of Flesh: The Value of the Enslaved, from Womb to Grave, in the Building of a Nation” (Beacon Press, 2017)
4/4/17          48 min


Podcast art for The Age of JacksonThe Age of Jackson Podcast 
032 The Value of the Enslaved from Womb to Grave with Daina Ramey Berry
7/27/18           47 min


Podcast art for Ben Franklin's WorldBen Franklin’s World 
176 Daina Ramey Berry, The Value of the Enslaved From Womb to Grave
3/6/18           51 min


Cite Black Women Podcast 
Season 1, Episode 5 “Dr. Daina Ramey Berry: Slavery, Commodification and Black Women’s Erasure”
2/24/19           45 min


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