History of Slavery and Slave Narratives
Did you know slavery has always been part of Human Society? Slaves have been in history for thousands of years. The oldest records of slavery can be found in the oldest of records. The oldest record that includes references of slavery can be found in the Sumerian Code of Nammu which contains laws regarding to slaves. Slaves were in all societies who practiced the institution usually gathered their slaves from other conquered cities and kingdoms. Slavery in Colonial times came when Britain began creating Colonies in North and South America to produce and harvest raw materials to create manufactured goods in Britain. Slaves came to America in order to work massive plantations that produced raw materials in America. Britain purchased their slaves from South Africa from the most powerful of tribes who wanted to sell their war captives (or burden) for other goods that Britain offered in order to take the slaves off their hands. Slaves were then transported by ships into America and the surrounding islands then auctioned off like cattle to plantation owners and others who wanted to buy a human being to do their manual labor. The System of Chattel Slavery was used in America and was now based on race. Under the chattel slavery systems slaves were viewed as property and not seen as a human being. They were less than human in the eyes of the colonist, and more like commodities. During the times the more slaves one owned the higher your status, just how it applies to farmers and cattle. The First slaves spoke in their native tongue, and still worshipped their African spirits and gods. Slave owners tried began to take away the origins of Africans to demolish their morality. They accomplished this by separating slaves that knew the same language or slaves who shared the same tribe or family. After they were separated they were then forcefully converted to Christianity and Disemboweled (in words of the Christians) from their African traditions. Slavery then became an essential institution in early United States because of the wealth being generated in it. Slaves brought much wealth to the colonist from the cash crops produced in the massive plantations; this gave further reason for the slave’s owners as well as the government officials in the Colonial United States in having their own personal reasons not to stop this imprisonment of fellow human beings. As the United States grew in wealth and in productions they needed more slaves from Africa to be shipped to the United States, a total of 597,000 slaves were imported from Africa only to be sold and abused for their labor. Many of these slaves were first imported to South America, Brazil and other tropical countries, and then moved to North America. During times of slavery abolitionist, white Christians who wanted to abolish slavery, began to use slave narratives in the middle 1800s in order to show the rest of the country, as well as the world, the physical abuse and mental abuse being done to a fellow human being, who had no chance to taste freedom since being born, for some other persons financial benefit. Slave narratives were written accounts or memoirs from the perspective of slaves themselves. Some slaves learnt how to read and write during their slavery, but this was rare and most of the slaves were unable to both read or write, so instead they told their accounts orally to abolitionist who wrote it down for the slaves. Slave narratives helped in many ways to spread the knowledge of the inhumanity and brutality slaves were being put through. These narratives were very detailed and caused readers to tremble at the thought of lives slaves were being forced into. The readers who were important were the whites in the North who knew little of the brutality being done to blacks in the south. There were also many narratives exported around the world, so the rest of the world can know the brutality of slaves as well. The idea to...
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