Murdoch, explores how the transformations engendered by the slave trade facilitated the development of the ethnic and cultural patterns that are present in today’s society. He claims that the inhabitants of the Caribbean islands will perpetually be binded to the cruel injustice faced by their African descendants. Murdoch specifically examines the relationship between sugar and slavery in Jamaica and its governance over society’s perception of racism and discrimination. The author believes that the combination of the white merchants and black slaves in the sugar industry instigated a community that developed an overlapping division of race and class. He affirms that the whites were subdivided into two main social statuses during the era; the “principal whites” and the “poor whites”.
As a matter of fact, already from the very beginning -in ships that brought slaves from Africa to the Caribbean- people from the same tribe were kept separated and then, once arrived in the mainland, they were scattered and mixed with others in order to avoid possibility of communication and revolts. This, for example, dramatically destroyed the continuity of their social order as well as their communal way of life. Furthermore, the experience of slavery itself deprived them from any spirit of enterprise or even self confidence: they underwent a deep psychological transformation that left them at the mercy of the colonizer. (Hiro, 1991) It is, therefore, possible to talk about a proper “[…] loss of identity, which has been integral to the Caribbean experience […]” (Hall, 1990:224-5). Quoting Hiro (1991:74) “[…] imperialist Europe had banished the abundant cultural heritage of Africans underneath centuries of slave trade.
The institution of slavery was called into existence in the Caribbean to satisfy the need for labour created by a change in the basis of production from tobacco to sugar. Traditionally African labour was best suited due to its low cost and distinguishable servile class. The acquisition of these slaves in the 18th century was through chattel slavery. The word chattel means property. African slaves were procured through kidnapping raids, making and selling prisoners of war, selling of children who parents where in debt and selling persons who were guilty of witchcraft.
This motivated the slaves and the mullattoes in the French colonies specifically Saint Domingue, to desire the same rights for themselves. Being denied these right by the planter class in the colony led to revolts by persons like Oge, L’Oventure and Dessalines, the revolts in Saint Domingue propelled the move for France’s to abolish slavery. In 1789, Vincent Oge lead a partly successful revolt which ended with Oge being captured and publically executed as a deterrent to other who may choose to revolt, that however was not the effect it had. The effectiveness of Oge’s revolt, was that it gave rise to men such as Jean-Jacques Dessalines and Toussaint L’Oventure to continue the fight against the French. They joined forces with the Spanish in the war against the French to gain their freedom, and when they did, they fought the Spanish and forced them of the entire island of Hispaniola.
Inhumane treatment and unbearable conditions caused many of them to resist through insurrectionary and non insurrectionary efforts . This SBA will show that marronage was a more successful from of resistance than insurrectionary resistance in gaining freedom in the British Caribbean between 1700 and 1834 . It is important that this topic is studied because it is essential to know that many slaves tried in various ways to end the constant ill-treatment they faced on plantations. It is equally essential to show the effectiveness of their endeavors such as marronage which gave many slaves the most freedom they could gain at that time (1700 – 1834). Freedom In the British Caribbean the revolts did not secure the permanent freedom of the enslaved.
Slavery had been a tradition in African culture. Many states within Africa had practiced slavery through forced labor, debt bondage, as well as, many other forms. Slaves from the Muslim dominated North African coast had been tested but it was found that the slaves were too educated and thus were more prone to rebel. This seems to be an early indication that slavery was unethical, but it still prevailed centuries to come as the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade emerged. Was the failure of the recruitment of the Northern Coast slaves due to the intellectual properties of the slaves and could the solution to this have been to find less educated Africans in order to force the burden of slavery upon them?
Although forms of slavery existed before the 1400s, this decade stigmatized the start of European slave trading in Africa with the Portuguese transferring people from Africa to Portugal and exploiting them as slaves. The development of colonization intensified the slave trade. Throughout the 1600s, more countries were involved in the European slave trade, including Spain, North America, Holland, France, Sweden, and Denmark. After the cessation of the African slave trade, occurred the phenomenon of “white slavery”, which constitutes the “procurement—by use of force, deceit, or drugs— of a white woman or girl against her will for prostitution.” 4.1.2. Human Trafficking in the 1900s
This system was crucial for the settlement of the Caribbean islands, which received twice as many English emigrants in the second quarter of the seventeenth century (Dookhan 1971 p127-146). Around mid-century, there were convicts and political exiles people entering the West Indies besides indentured servants. These White labourers were treated as if they were slaves even though there were laws that protected free persons who worked on contract on the plantations. The whites were unaccustomed to the enslavement conditions within the Caribbean and they resented their living circumstances. Their contract owners also complained about their unwillingness to work according to the terms of their contract.
Example in the 1400s to 1800, European countries started to notice the coastal regions of Africa, they later begin to engage in commerce with the local people in Africa. In the early 1700s the relationship between the two continents increased which was mainly caused the slave trade between the two. In 1798 the British finally establish a colony to freed slaves in Sierra Leone. 30 years later, a group of Americans and Europeans brought Christianity to African. The missionaries were very impressed by various elements in Africa and this resulted in the over power of African people.
Especially, Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade (Triangular Slave Trade) not only highly affected the continent but also left it with sophisticated disputes for the continuing generation because it depopulated the continent and morally undermined the peoples. Since the 18th century, even though some European governments had attempted to be abolished slave trade activities by laws; the more bad condition (colonization) could come to replace the slave trade and other trade activities. The reason is that the objective of the slave trade was to use African labor outside Africa; whereas that of colonization was to exploit their labor on their own land, in Africa, and to get the market for industrial commodities. Colonization affected the African histories, cultures and traditions and identities, and shaped the societies with European modes of life. Due to this, Africans were considered as uncivilized societies that had already psychologically and morally marginalized the people.