chapter  7
24 Pages

Dominance and Desire

In seventeenth-century Virginia, planter and promoter Robert Beverley offered visitors a 'brace of young Beautiful Virgins' to wait upon these 'happy gentlemen' when they retired to their quarters for the night. The women offered to guests were native Americans, whom Beverley thought 'generally beautiful'. 1 In eighteenth-century Jamaica slave overseer Thomas Thistlewood lost few opportunities to entice and, i f necessary, force local slaves to engage in sex. The outposts of European colonization presented bountiful opportunities for sex and he meticulously recorded these conquests in an extensive diary. One of the obvious attractions of the frontier was sex, particularly with 'exotic' men and women. Other colonists generally tolerated these 'manly' exploits. 2 Planters, overseers, traders, soldiers and merchants were often in a position to insist that the slaves and indigenous people under their rule obey and serve the needs of masters.