Influence Of Slave Ownership In The American Colonies

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Slave ownership was relatively widespread. By the 1700s, all the American colonies of European countries had African slaves. By using a system of codes to limit and govern the slaves’ life, slave owners made their slaves completely dependent on them. Some slaves lived in almost nonhuman conditions, harshly controlled by their masters, while others enjoyed flexibility and autonomy. Masters provided cheap clothing and shoes for their slaves. The food that slaves received was very poor. As a result, slaves were small for their ages, and usually were victims of different diseases. This contributed to a high mortality and a short average life. Many slaves were able to cultivate their own gardens, but only if they were allowed by their master. Although slave marriages were forbidden, slaves did marry and had large families. Most slave owners were not opposing to this practice, but also, it was not a problem to divide the families for the owners’ own interest. Slaves worked hard, especially slave women, who had to work on the fields, but also to handle cooking, cleaning and child raising. Pregnant women, children, and the elderly were forced to work hard in the fields for more than ten hours per day. Owners could do whatever they liked with their slaves. They were using force and brutal violence to induce their slaves to persist the terrible demands of cultivation in the South. Furthermore, sexual abuse was part of everyday life of the slave women. Slaves had no rights. They were

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