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Slave Trade Depopulation of Africa

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Slave Trade Depopulation of Africa

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  • November 19, 2005
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The African slave trade, more specifically the Trans Atlantic slave trade as opposed to the East Indian, (although both served western ideals) robbed the continent of its most natural, essential and irreplaceable asset: its human resources. Those who were captured, shipped, and sold in the Americas were raped of their family, their language, their history, their culture, their ethnicity, the very names they carried and their pride for their homeland. Families were separated before even leaving their homeland, and many perished on their way to the ‘New World’. Those who survived faced a struggle in a new country that would persists until this day and throughout, a struggle only comparable perhaps to those in Africa who stayed.

The African slave trade was by no means a true manner of trade. It was trickery, banditry, kidnapping, and war waging that was used in the capture and selling of slaves in Africa to the Americas. Many of those capturing slaves were warriors under the direction of African rulers who traded captives for beads, cheap gin, cheap gunpowder, cheap cloth, and other low quality goods that did little to benefit people. The trade was quite unbalanced; Europe and the United States still stand on legs that stretch deep into money acquired through the slave trade, while Africa has only regrets and problems rooted in the heart of the slave trade.

Due to a lack of information concerning Africa’s population and population density up to the 19th century , the numerous illegal ships of undocumented slaves smuggled to the Americas, and the amount of slaves who died along the passage between slavehouse to ship, or died during the passage from port to port, there is no certainty in how many Africans were taken captive and killed during the Trans Atlantic slave trade. Numbers have been proposed that range between a few to one hundred million from 1445 to 1870. Current theories (during Walters’ times) suggest 10 million arrived in the New World, a...