HSTA 306: Response to Baptist

For historians, a book review is an opportunity both to assess the quality of a historical work and to place the author’s argument in conversation with other scholarship. At its best, therefore, a quality review synthesizes the arguments of the historian, assesses the quality of the research, and comprehends the historiographic significance of the work. It is a genre in which historians must be fluent both as writers and readers.

Over the past few weeks, we have read and discussed the entirety of Ed Baptist’s 2014 book, The Half Has Never Been Told, another essay in the field of slavery and capitalism (by Caitlin Rosenthal), and several responses to Baptist.

Your assignment is to write your own response/review of Baptist, taking into account the other perspectives we have read. In your review, you should briefly lay out the argument of the book, identify its major strengths and weaknesses, and assess the historiographic contributions of the book.


  • Approximately 750-1000 words (excluding footnotes)
  • Discuss The Half Has Never Been Told and at least two of the readings related to it
  • Citations should be in Chicago Manual of Style format
  • Submit the paper via dropitto.me by 5:00pm on Friday, April 14 (use Lastname_Review.docx as a filename)
  • Any review uploaded after 5:00pm on the due date will be assessed a late penalty of 5 points per day. No reviews will be accepted after 5:00pm on Friday, April 21.

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