Presentation on theme: "Atlantic Slave Trade Europeans bought and sold Africans to work their plantations in the New World. Why did they choose Africans? How did this system exist."— Presentation transcript:
Atlantic Slave Trade Europeans bought and sold Africans to work their plantations in the New World. Why did they choose Africans? How did this system exist for so long?
Causes of African Slavery Need for labor on plantations in New World colonies Natives difficult – Offered resistance – Knew land better – Died from disease, warfare, poor treatment – Exception: Spanish empire’s encomienda system Advantages for enslaving Africans – Already exposed to European diseases – Experience in similar farming techniques – Less likely to escape – Skin color made easier to catch if escaped Atlantic Slave Trade – buying and selling of Africans for work in the Americas – Spanish took early lead – More than 40% of slaves brought to Brazil
Slavery Wasn’t New Spread of Islam in the 7 th century increased slavery & the slave trade – Muslim rulers justified enslavement with belief that POWs could be sold as slaves – 17M people sold between 650- 1600 to North Africa and Southwest Asia – Could escape bondage in African societies, incl. by marriage to family they served Eastern Slave Trade (Muslim Slave Trade) – Treated slaves as human beings as well as property Could take legal action Own property Own slaves Get married No separation from children under 7 years old – Banned mistreatment of slaves – Freeing slaves was virtuous act – Barred Muslims from enslaving other Muslims – Still involved serious breaches of human rights & restricted freedom – Most worked as house servants – Not wholly motivated by economics Military service Smaller workshops, farms, building projects, mining Sexual slavery – Came from non-Muslim Africa, central and Eastern Europe, and central Asia
Spread of Slavery Shippers in order of scale: Portuguese, British, French, Spanish, Dutch, & North Americans England dominated slave trade from 1609-1807 when it abolished the slave trade – Transported 1.7M to the West Indies – 400,000 sold to North American colonies Population steadily grew once there 2M by 1830 African cooperation – Rulers & merchants willingly sold captives for profit along coastal port cities From West and Central Africa – Traded for gold, guns, & other goods African resistance – Some voiced opposition – King Affonso I
Triangular Trade Transatlantic trading network between Europe, Africa, and the Americas Manufactured goods from Europe to Africa Slaves from Africa to the Americas – Middle Passage – voyage that brought captured Africans to the West Indies Bad conditions for both slaves & sailors Disease + physical abuse ~20% died each trip Crops & goods from Americas to Europe
Slavery in the Americas Sold at auction – Work fields: coffee, cocoa, cotton, tobacco, & sugar plantations – Work in house Developed new cultural heritage – Kept music & stories – Combined native religions with Christianity = santaria Thousands ran away – Laws existed to return slaves to owners – Punished upon return
Consequences of the Slave Trade Africa – Cultures lost generations of fittest members – Families torn apart – Women took roles formerly belonging to men – Population decline, but was able to recover – Introduced guns to the continent Made some groups more powerful than others Gave rise to great African kingdoms Americas – Labor contribution – African culture brought to Americas – Substantial African-American populations today
Discussion Points Role of Africans in the slave trade vs. popular perception today Ways economy impacts society Evolution of human rights Term “African American”
Resources Slave Voyages Database http://www.slavevoyages.org/tast/databas e/search.faces http://www.slavevoyages.org/tast/databas e/search.faces Exploring Africa: The Atlantic Slave Trade http://exploringafrica.matrix.msu.edu/stu dents/curriculum/m7b/activity1.php http://exploringafrica.matrix.msu.edu/stu dents/curriculum/m7b/activity1.php Met Museum Thematic Essay http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/slav /hd_slav.htm http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/slav /hd_slav.htm
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