If any more evidence were needed to dethrone Christopher Columbus as a hero, the story told by Erin Woodruff Stone in Captives of Conquest should end the debate. Stone's main contribution to studies of the enslavement of Indigenous peoples in the Americas is her geographic and temporal focus on the Caribbean and its littoral in the sixteenth century. As she notes in her introduction, much of the historiography to date, especially in English, has focused on the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and on areas that ultimately became part of the United States. By contrast, Stone argues that the enslavement of Indigenous peoples of the sixteenth-century Caribbean was both a crucial factor in the early collapse of Native populations in the region and a central element in Spanish strategies of conquest and colonization.

Stone begins in the precontact Caribbean, highlighting the migrations and interconnections among peoples of the Antilles and the...

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