It is presumptuous in prosperity to dismiss contemptuously the methods that enabled generations of slaves to endure their harsh lot in life, and to snatch from it a few human satisfactions. It is tempting to assume that these subtle master-slave relationship, and the opportunities and the “space” it offered, must have provided fertile soil for the growth of slave community life and slave culture. One might take as examples the view of two white historians, one Southern and Northern, who have both written sensitively and sympathetically on black history. Joel Williamson restated the conventional, formative answer to the question of whether slave culture was largely a response to the impact of slavery itself. Most of what constituted Black Culture was a survival response to the world the white man made; most blacks had to shave their lives largely within the round of possibilities generated by whites. In sharp contrast, Herbert Gutman descended from such a view and charged most of the leading historians of slavery with complicity in his propagation. in which slave culture developed to the cumulative experience of generations and from the inner resources of the slave community. It was to some extent and adaptive process to the regards of slavery, but the form of that adaptation was shaped from within. He agreed with Sidney Mintz and Richard Price that African-American slave institutions took on their characteristics shape within the parameters of the masters monopoly of power, but separate from the masters institutions. Gutman criticized Genovese for his emphasis on the paternalistic compromise at the expense of the long and painful process by which Africans became Afro-American. Gutman came dangerously close at times to writing the slaveholders out of the story completely. Historian John Blasingame drew a distinction between the slaves’ primary environment, which they found in the social organization of their quarters, and their secondary environment, which centered on their work experience and the contact with whites that involved. It was the former, he insisted, which gave the slaves ethical rules, fostered cooperation, and promoted black solidarity. The large slice of the slaves’ waking hours which were taken up by their work may lead to speculation on how the work environment actually was. Indeed, earlier in his book, Blassingame offered a much more comprehensive explanation of the evolution of slave culture. It was not, he says, the contrast between the slaves African past and his dependency on the plantation which date remind his behavior, but rather the interaction between certain Universal elements of West African culture, the institutionalized demands of Plantation life, the process of enslavement, and he’s creative response to bon Bondage.