Liberty's Exiles, By Maya Jasanoff


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In the late 18th century, black preachers from one Baptist church in the Carolinas founded new congregations in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Jamaica and Sierra Leone. How? All were loyal to George III, part of the 60,000-plus diaspora of British Americans – black, white and native – who fled after US independence.

This gripping, original and well-crafted history from a rising Harvard star not only stretches onto a global canvas the story of Loyalist flight told in part by Simon Schama in Rough Crossings. It may change your mental map of the entire period.

From Bengal to England, West Indies to West Africa, the Loyalists - no doormats but sturdy devotees of constitutional liberty - transformed the empire while still saying "God Save the King".