This work examines the core period of the African diaspora in the Americas. The author confronts myths surrounding the ethos of this diaspora which were induced by the mercantilist preoccupations of Western Europe. The entire period is portrayed as a battle between two conflicting and opposite strategies - that of the slavocracy and that of the enslaved Africans - culminating in the conversion of the French colony of St Domingue into the revolutionary state of Haiti. The author suggests that Haiti, because of its positionin the midst of hostile slave societies, provided inspiration for the antislavery crusade in both its particularistic and its international aspects. The epilogue provides a glimpse into the author's second book on the divergent perceptions in the early evolution of leadership in the African dispora in the Americas.