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Jeremy Musson finds that a new book on architecture and slavery is informative, but wonders where it leaves the debate about how to manage the built heritage that is its legacy
A Bittersweet Heritage by Victoria Perry is an account of some of the wealth which poured into the British landed estates from the West Indies, directly as a result of Britain’s Caribbean slave-based economy - principally sugar cultivation, but also from the slave trade itself.
Few people with a serious interest in heritage and historic architecture – and the artistic and cultural significance of the country house – will not be aware of this difficult history today, but Dr Perry’s carefully researched and highly readable narrative, provides a thorough and insightful investigation of a number of inter-related themes for anyone wishing to understand these relationships better.
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