“Colonial Intimacies: Legislating Sex in French Louisiana,” 2003

“Sexuality could be used to construct and maintain boundaries between colonizer and colonized or, conversely, as the ultimate instrument of assimilation”

In the colonization of Louisiana territory during the 16th century the French colonizer were engaging in metissage, like the Englishmen in Virginia at the time.  The colonial officials determined the value of the differing races based on the profitability.  The African slaves were deemed as unacceptable for the French colonists to intermarry or have sexual relations with because it interfered with production and humanized the slaves so the masters would want to free them, while sexual relations with the natives were viewed as beneficial and a way to assimilate into this new territory and obtain better trades.  Demonstrating the difference in racial struggle because dependent on what the economy needed also determined the value of your skin color. 

Jennifer M. Spear, “Colonial Intimacies: Legislating Sex in French Louisiana,” William and Mary Quarterly 60 (January 2003): 75-98.


4 thoughts on ““Colonial Intimacies: Legislating Sex in French Louisiana,” 2003

  1. Pingback: Order of Blog Posts | The Intersectionality of Oppression

  2. In the first sentence colonizer should be plural. Also, try relating this post to your last post. I think I see why you had this one go after the last one but maybe you should explain it a bit more.


  3. I like seeing how people were oppressed based on the needs of those in power during the time period. Just make it aware to the reader who made this statement and what it’s relation is to the article you read. Was this an observation from the author? And what was the premise of her piece?


  4. This is a great piece to contrast with your first post: why did the French and English develop different ideas about racial hierarchy? Feel free to cite something from 130 if you need to.


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