Essay About Slavery In America

Essay About Slavery In America-41
The story of European colonialism in the Americas and its victimization of Africans and Indians follows a central paradigm in most textbooks.The African “role” encompasses the transportation, exploitation, and suffering of many millions in New World slavery, while Indians are described in terms of their succumbing in large numbers to disease, with the survivors facing dispossession of their land.Africans provided the bulk of labor in this new system of slavery, but American Indians were compelled to labor in large numbers as well.

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They worked in mines, on plantations, as apprentices for artisans, and as domestics—just like African slaves and European indentured servants.People could be kept as slaves for religious purposes (Aztecs and Pacific Northwest Indians) or as a by-product of warfare, where they made little contribution to the economy or basic social structure (Eastern Woodlands).In other societies, slaves were central to the economy.Many other Indians were moved hundreds or thousands of miles within the Americas.Sioux Indians from the Minnesota region could be found enslaved in Quebec, and Choctaws from Mississippi in New England.A racist and gross misinterpretation of this event posited that most Indians could not be enslaved because of their love for freedom, while Africans were used to having their labor controlled by “big men” in Africa.This dangerous view obscured a basic fact of early modern history: Anyone could be enslaved.A longstanding line of transportation of Indian slaves led from modern-day Utah and Colorado south into Mexico.The European trade in American Indians was initiated by Columbus in 1493.Needing money to pay for his New World expeditions, he shipped Indians to Spain, where there already existed slave markets dealing in the buying and selling of Africans.Within a few decades, the Spanish expanded the slave trade in American Indians from the island of Hispaniola to Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Cuba, and the Bahamas.


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