African American Triangular Trade

663 Words3 Pages
Europe had an upper hand in its military strength and economic power compared to the African continent due to its technical superiority and efficient organization of labor. Europe was the first part of the world to shift from feudalism to capitalism. When Europeans arrived at the Americas, they recognized the immense potential in extracting gold, silver and tropical produce from the land. However, without adequate labor supplies, this possibility could not have been a reality. The Europeans had to substitute for the dwindling Native American population which failed to survive the diseases that the Europeans brought. Had the contributions of African labor in the Americas not been present, the Europeans would have faced a daunting task when attempting…show more content…
A chain reaction was started when the Europeans demanded slaves in exchange for consumer goods. The African kings found that the Europeans had valuable goods to offer. Once this pattern of slave trading began in much of Africa, it was beyond the reach of any single African state to stop the ongoing process. Nonetheless, there were instances of African resistance during the course of the slave trade. The ‘Baga’ community from the present-day Republic of Guinea carried out a revolt against European traders in order to secure an alliance to halt the slave traffic. However, the community was defeated at the hands of local European residents and other slave trading…show more content…
They saw the tremendous potential in enslaving Africans in order to optimize their economic dominance. This made Europeans most likely to explore the Atlantic and develop a commercial framework with other parts of the world, mainly West Africa. West Africa was known to be extremely wealthy in gold, and was relatively closer and clearly accessible by a sea route from Europe. This led to the development of the triangular trade route between Europe, Africa and the Americas, as an economic system. Slaves were transported from Africa to the Americas to work in sugar, cotton and tobacco plantations. The final goods were then sent back to Europe. In return, raw supplies and other manufactured goods such as textiles and rum were exported to Africa from Europe. The money the ships received from trading slaves was used to buy agricultural products that the slaves were actually harvesting. According to Karl Marx, ‘this economic system dawned the era of capitalist production, while pointing out that what was good for Europeans was acquired at the expense of the indefinable suffering by Africans and Amerindians.’ Later, there were attempts made to enumerate the actual financial profits made by Europeans from the triangular trade system, which turned out to be

More about African American Triangular Trade

Open Document