Slave Trade

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In previous years, most Africans who have came to America were slaves who were purchased through the international slave trade. White colonists viewed Africans as uncivilized and ‘turned to the international slave trade to fill their labor needs.’ The white English settlers knew nothing of any other culture; people were thought to be white or Christian, anything else was ‘uncivilized’. Slavery served for two purposes; a labor system and racial control in a white country.

The slave trade was important in building the colonial empires of European nations and in creating the wealth that later produced the Industrial Revolution. Africans were being Europeanized and at the same time European Americans were being Africanized. The slave trade created a way of communication for the movement of crops, agricultural techniques, diseases and medical knowledge between Africa, America, and Europe. The African population increased before Europeans arrived, suggesting the complex ways of the African agricultural methods. The skill of farming came from the skill in the production of iron, which the new farming techniques necessary to sustain larger populations originated. As the population grew, tasks were specialized that led to technical improvements. By the time Europeans reached the West African coast, extensive urban settlement, advanced architecture, elaborate are, and a complex political organization. Many communities of West Africa had complex religious rites, organized regional trade, codes of law, and complex political organization.

The slave trade begun when a Portuguese captain, Ruy do Sequeira, went to the coast of Benin and received permission to trade for gold, ivory, and slaves. European powers raided Africa’s coasts for slaves and marched in the interior kidnapping helpless people. Slaves were sold by the African sellers in return for European guns, bars of iron, copper, brass pots and tankards, beads, rum and textiles.

For a long period, African...
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