Atlantic Slave Trade
From 1550 to the asses, a new system of trading links that carried wealth, people, goods, and cultures around the Atlantic Basin was created. This system is known as the Atlantic system; an effective way of trade between the Americas and Eurasia, but also the cause of countless deaths of African slaves. During the time of the Atlantic System, sugar was one of the most crucial trade items, as well as tobacco, gold, and silver. As the Caribbean colonies were becoming mass producers of sugar in the Atlantic World, a new era of African slave trade began to grow along with it.
The economic factors that influenced the expansion of slavery and slave trade were the harsh conditions inflicted on the slaves, the way the products of trade were made, and Rupee’s constant demand for efficient production of raw goods. One of the most effectual factors that influenced the expansion of slavery during the time Of the Atlantic System were the conditions that the slaves were put through. African slaves underwent waves of plague and disease, and in result, were killed by the thousands. They were also treated lesser that unmans should be; being beaten daily by drivers and being forced to work on plantations at a young age.
Document 7 is a picture of a transportation vessel that illustrates the method of slave transportation in the Middle Passage. In the vessels, slaves were packed together on the floor and separated into sections all throughout the ship. The long and dangerous voyage in the Middle Passage combined with sickly and dangerous conditions on the boats more often than not led to massive losses of the slaves’ lives. Document 5, a chart that details the birth and death proportions for slaves on Jamaican sugar plantation, validates the large number of slaves dying from severe conditions and disease.
Document 9 further confirms the harsh conditions that the slaves were put through. It is an autobiography of a past slave that experienced the harsh reality of being a slave in the Atlantic World. In the document, the former slave says he was “quite overpowered with horror and anguish” when seeing slaves on a transportation vessel. The harsh conditions that the slaves were put through connected to the increase in slave trade because the high mortality rates forced plantations to instantly replace the frequently dying slaves, as shown in document 5.
Another factor that influenced the expansion of slavery was the way products of the trade were made. Because sugar was one of the most important products of trade in the Atlantic System, the expansion of sugar plantations in the West Indies had an impact in the volume of slave trade coming from Africa. Caribbean sugar planters mostly depended on slaves instead of raising wages to attract European laborers because the slaves were much less costly. Document 3, a painting of Antigen in the British West Indies, illustrates how a plantation would look like.
The significance of African slave labor is evident in the painting because there is only one European person appears in the whole picture. Document 1, another painting of a sugar plantation, depicts the same kind of image that is shown in document 3. However, in this picture, there are much more slaves shown working on the plantation, which proves that slaves were the backbone to sugar agriculture. Without the slaves performing the labor, no sugar would be produced. The general number of workers can be seen in document 4. This document pacifies the occupations that slaves had on a sugar plantation in Jamaica.
Because slaves did the majority of work on plantations, the spread of plantations along the West Indies dramatically influenced the increase of slave trade. The last factor that impacted slave trade during the time of the Atlantic System was Rupee’s rising demand for trade products. European investment capital, manufactured goods, and shipping dominated the Atlantic System. Europe was also the principal market for American plantation products. Before the seventeenth century, sugar was scarce and expensive in Europe ND only consumed by the rich.
As production increased, however, more Europeans began to consume sugar. African slave trade comes into play here, because the flow of sugar to Europe was wholly determined by the flow of slaves from Africa. The flow of Africa slaves is shown in document 8, which is a map detailing the African slave trade. Document 2 also shows transatlantic slave trade from Africa in the form of a bar graph. On both the map and the graph, it is evident that Rupee’s demand for trade products had an effect on the overwhelming number of slaves being traded.
In document 6, a map of the Atlantic Economy, show the flow of transported slaves and products. No other country than Europe is shown at the receiving end of all the colonial trade products, including sugar, silver, tobacco, and furs. As a result of Rupee’s greed, African slave trade escalated almost instantly and was at its peak. Slavery played a crucial role in the development of the modern world economy. Slaves provided the labor power necessary to settle and develop the New World. They also produced the products for the first mass consumer arrests: sugar, tobacco, coffee, cocoa, and later cotton.
Slavery was an integral part of the earliest multinational systems of credit and trade that arose in the 15th and 16th centuries. The African slave trade also stimulated European shipping, manufacturing, and gun making. The economic influences of the expansion of slavery, which were the harsh conditions inflicted on the slaves, the way the products of trade were made, and Rupee’s constant demand for efficient production of raw goods, made it possible for the economy to be how it is today.
Atlantic Slave Trade
The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade A slave can be defined as a person who is the property of and wholly subject to another, a bond servant or a person entirely under the domination of some influence or person. Slavery was well recognized in many early civilizations. Ancient Egypt, Ancient China, the Kodak Ian Empire, Assyria, Ancient India, Ancient Greece, the Roman Empire, the Islamic Caliphate, the Hebrews in Palestine, and the pre-Columbian civilizations of the Americas all had either a form of debt-slavery, punishment for crime, enslavement of prisoners of war, child abandonment or birth of slave children to slaves.
However, as the sixteenth century approached, so did the change in the way slavery would be looked at, for years to come. The Atlantic slave trade became the name Of the three part economic cycle that involved four continents for four centuries and millions of people. The Atlantic slave trade or the middle passage, triangular trade and slavery affected the economy of Europe, Africa and the Americas in both negative and positive aspects. Starting in the CSS Portuguese were the first to sail down the coast of Africa to search for gold and jewels.
The Portuguese had to extend their rower across the co+cast because Sub-Sahara Africans trade routes were controlled by the Islamic Empire. By 1445, The Portuguese conquered three African countries and created trading posts. This allowed them access to Europe across the Sahara. Initially, the Portuguese traded cooperate, cloth, tools, wine and horses for pepper, ivory and most importantly gold. The first slave purchase is said to have taken place in 1441 when the Portuguese caught two African males while they were along the coast. The Africans in the nearby village paid them in gold for their return.
Eventually, they developed he idea that they could get more gold by transporting slaves along Africans coast. The Muslims were enticed by the idea of slavery as they used them as porters and for profit. Portugal had a monopoly on the export of slaves in Africa for more than two hundred years. This encounter is the beginning of one of the most tragic events in history, the Atlantic triangular trade (Thomas 1997). A triangular trade evolves when a region has export commodities that aren’t required in the region which its major imports come and provides a method for trade imbalances.
The triangular trade is named for the rough shape it makes on a map. It worked like a triangle between all the colonies that were involved. For centuries the world was took part in its most successful trading system. There where nearly fifteen million Africans were shipped to both North and South America for more than three-hundred. Slaves, cash crops and manufactured goods were the most traded between the Americas, Europe and Africa. The Europeans controlled the first stage of the trade by carrying supplies for sale and trade such as, cloth, spirit, tobacco, beads, shells, metal goods and guns.
This was their method of which were used to help expand empires and capture more slaves. These goods were exchanged for purchased and kidnapped African slaves (www. NM. AC. UK/ freedom/viewed. CFML/theme/triangular). African kings and merchants would capture the slaves or organize campaigns ran by the Europeans. The motives of the Europeans were based on one thing; they lacked a major source, a work force. It was stated that the Indigene people were unreliable and Europeans were unsuited to the climate. However, Africans had experience in agriculture, keeping cattle, content with the climate.
Africa soon became reliant on the slavery of their people and the profits that came long with it. The next stage involved the slaves being transported by voyage to the Americas and Caribbean, the middle passage (PBS. “The African Slave Trade and the Middle Passage. ” http://www. PBS. Org/high/AI/ apart 11 naira. HTML). The middle passage was a perilous, horrendous journey slaves made across the Atlantic Ocean to the Americas. The final stage of the Atlantic slave trade was the return to Europe from the Americas with the produce from the slave-labor plantations.
Most regions of North and South America were used to provide these raw materials to Europe for manufacturing. This wasn’t the first or only slave trade, but it was the cruelest. What began as a quest for gold ended as a quest for slaves, leaving a major stamp on African and American history (Thomas 1997). Before undergoing the middle passage, slaves faced human misery and suffering. Kidnapped slaves were forced to walk shackled in slave caravans to European coastal forts. Due to the lack of food and energy, half of the slaves became sick and were killed or left to die.
Some had the strength to make it so they were left in underground dungeons. For years, Africans were stranded in these dungeons across the coast of Africa.. There, they wait on the embarked horrid encounter of the entire slave trade, the middle passage. None of the previous passengers returned to their homeland so none of the Africans knew what they were about to endure. The voyages were generally organized by companies and investors because they were a huge financial burden(“The African Slave Trade and the Middle Passage). Two theories show the packing of slaves in the European ships; loose and tight packing.
Loose packing carried less slaves with the hopes of more room and more slaves making it to the Americas alive and in fair condition. This was exchanged for tight packing. Captains believed despite more casualties, this would yield a greater profit. On occasion, veterinarians inspected the slaves before the voyage to determine which slaves could make it across the Atlantic Ocean. The enslaved Africans were chained together by hand and foot, not even being able to lie on one’s side. They ate, slept, urinated, defecated, gave birth and died all in that one spot. There was overcrowding, inadequate ventilation and little to no sanitation.
Twenty percent of every hundred died along the way from either suffocation, starvation, amoebic dysentery, scurvy or a disease such as small ox. The slaves that died were thrown overboard as well as the slaves that showed illness. Some threw their self-overboard risking their life rather than deal with these horrific measures. Approximately fifteen million captured Africans were sent to the Americas. The middle passage was the longest, most dangerous part of the Atlantic slave trade (“The Middle Passage Experience'”). From the seventeenth century on, slaves became the focus of trade between Europe and Africa.
Europe had already colonized North and South America as well as the Caribbean islands from the fifteenth century onward. This created an insatiable demand for African laborers, who were deemed “more fit” to work in the tropical conditions of the New World. The numbers of slaves imported across the Atlantic Ocean steadily increased, from approximately 5,000 slaves a year in the sixteenth century to over 100,000 slaves a year by the end of the eighteenth century (BMW. Mariner. Org/ captivities). Upon their arrival to the Americas, the slaves were washed, greased and placed inside dungeons.
The grease added a more appealing look making the slaves appear healthier so the profit would be much higher. European slave traders made sure all of their potential properties were in well condition before bidding. They were branded with a hot iron to keep their identity as a slave. There Were two main types Of slave auctions; highest bidder or grab and go auctions. Highest bidder was a bidding process which the buyer with the highest bid would get the slave. Grab and go auctions was the process in which the buyer would give the trader an agreed amount of money in exchange for a ticket.
This process was where the slaves were released from their dungeon and the buyers would rush and grab the slave hey wanted, Each slave would be sold to an owner who owned a great deal of land and worked on either a plantation or mine and there, the living conditions were still only barely better (Curtain 1 969) A prominent African, author and a major influence on the enactment of the Slave Trade Act of 1807, Aloud Equation was well aware and very familiar with the Atlantic slave trade. At the age of eleven, Equation and his sister were kidnapped from his village in Nigeria.
He survived the middle passage, and taken to the West Indies. He tells how he was bought by Captain Pascal, a British naval Officer as a “present” for a cousin. He tells how was enslaved in North America for ten years, working as a seaman. In 1 766, he bought his freedom and wrote an autobiography, “The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Aloud Equation,” Equation gave a firsthand look of the conditions enslaved Africans were forced to live. This document was one of the first documents that explained, thoroughly, the terrible human cruelty of the Atlantic slave trade (Wright et al. 001). Although many lives were taken or at risk, The Atlantic slave trade fulfilled its major goal, profit and change the three continents. Europe, America and Africans economy were all affected by the slave trade. Rupee’s economy was suffering before the slave trade. The Atlantic slave trade was during the time of recovery for Europe and completely recovered their economy. Because of the success of the trade, they needed more people to manufacture raw materials and export them to Africa. The great supply of jobs created many exports and the income to buy imports.
By the end of the slave trade, Rupee’s economy was in well standings as one of the wealthiest continents in the world. The America’s economies rose too. They were honored with a free workforce that provided many resources from sugar to cotton. The free labor allotted for them to received one hundred percent of the profit. They were importing more slaves and exporting the goods made by them to gaining wealth. America’s economy became agriculturally stable and soon industrialized. Europe and the Americas economies were affected in a positive way. However, Africans economy received a negative effect.
Many, for years lived in fear due to slavery. African villages became small and poor. All of the kingdoms that were strong at one time, collapsed and were conquered. They received raw material goods from the slave trade but with nothing shown. The African kings prospered only because they were heavily involved in the slave trade. As the kings’ wealth grew, their economy was at a standstill and eventually failed. The Atlantic slave trade, human cruelty and evil at its finest, had a substantial effect on Europe, the Americas and Africa (www. Understandability. Com). Annotated Bibliography Curtain, Philip.
The Atlantic Slave Trade: A Census. Madison, Wisconsin: The University of Wisconsin Press, 1969. The Atlantic Slave Trade combines modern research and statistical methods with Curtain’s broad knowledge of the field to present the quantitative analysis of the Atlantic slave trade. It’s one of the first books to comprise all of the information about the slave trade. Will use this book for a lot of the information I need about the slave trade.
Atlantic Slave Trade
In The Atlantic Slave Trade Herbert Klein attempts to go into great detail of the inner workings of the slave trade: how it came to be, the parties involved, as well as the social and cultural impacts it had on the society. When thinking of the slave trade previous to this class, I would think to myself how low we as a humanity once became, and how many of African Americans were exploited to this awful set of events.
After reading the book, those same thoughts still remained, however, due to Klein my understanding of the knowledge gave me greater insight into how complex the slave trade really was. How Portugal was one of the leaders in the slave trade, how countries turned against each other, and how much of the world was involved in this horrific set of events were all news to me while reading. Because of this complexity, no matter how clear the author was, the multitudes of information seemed to overwhelm me through my reading.
Herbert Klein organized the book in a way that made all the information very recess, however, with all the numerical data I had a hard time keeping track. “The Chesapeake became the primary tobacco producer for the world, exporting 38 million pounds by 1700 holding some 145,000 slaves by 1750 absorbed 40,000 slaves by indenture. By 1790 there were an impressive 698,000 slaves… ” (44). This was all in the matter of a couple of sentences, for myself could never retain the information that was provided in the first sentence.
This quote does however go into precise figures, and is actually well laid out as a whole. Without having a deep prior knowledge though, it is ere difficult to follow the what’s all going on. If someone was to read this with prior knowledge of the subject, I’m sure they could weed out a lot of the information and take away more from the book. This book is definitely not for some general educated reader to pickup. It requires a decent understanding of the geography, slight prior knowledge of the subject, as well as the full interest into the subject. The first region encountered by the Portuguese as they rounded Cape Picador and arrived in the western Sudan just south of the Sahara, was the area called Sexagenarian, which took its name from the Senegal and Gambia Rivers, its two most prominent features” (60). This quote proves as an example, and a simple one at that, that one must know at least where everything is to fully gather the information that is provided in Kelvin’s book. Without it, one may surely get lost in the reading.
Even if a specialist were to read the book, I feel that due to how compact the book is, that they may get lost while reading as well. I don’t feel as though one could read through the book just once and honestly say, “I understood the majority of the information throughout the book,” thou getting lost somewhere in the book. Entering this project, nothing really interested me while looking at the end “Selected Sources” of each chapter, Slavery was the only thing that seemed remotely interesting not only because it’s such a huge part of history, but also because I didn’t know much about it.
I had no clue that so many countries were so directly involved in this business of sorts, that Portugal was the origin of the slave trade, and that the powers shifted so much in this horrific tragedy that happened in the new world. The book has increased my knowledge of the events that happened during the slave trade, but not necessarily my interest. I never found myself deeply engaged in the book unfortunately, and I found that surprising. Still strongly believe that the slave trade was wrong, but have neither gained, nor lost interest in it. The importance of the subject is made clear with all the information inside of it.
I may not understand every detail as they are going through, but the way the book is organized in a way where the importance of the subject is definitely shown. The importance of the book is to show us readers what the Atlantic Slave trade was all about. The chapter titles, and the information that is reflected in each chapter really shows this. Chapter titles beginning with “Slavery in Western Development,” and ending with, “The End of the Slave Trade,” really show how the author wanted to really concentrate on the bigger picture, rather than one specific moment in the Atlantic Slave Trade.
Throughout the book, I don’t believe there were any major inconsistencies. Actually felt that Klein went deeper, and was most precise in his book. “If the slave trade was profitable and the Africans were put to productive use in the Americas, then why did Europeans begin to attack the trade at the end of the eighteenth century and systemically term ante the participation of every European metropolis and American colony or republic in the nineteenth century? (188). Klein frequently used this strategy of posing a question at the beginning of the chapter, and then answering the same question throughout the rest of the chapter. Using this strategy, any inconsistencies were very infrequent, if none at all. All in all, there wouldn’t be anything in the book that I would need explained more, the author presented the question himself, and provided enough information where I felt he answered the question, and more.
Because of how tough this book was to read for myself I probably wouldn’t recommend it to someone who wanted to just read a book. If someone was interested in learning the intricacies, and the numerical data that came along with the Atlantic Slave Trade I would definitely recommend this one. It’s just one of those books that if you don’t have the want, or motivation to read it, then it won’t be enjoyable, and you’ll likely become lost in the plethora of information the book presents.