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Slavery and Prejudice: The Antecedents of Discrimination. Based on the Case Study There is no such Thing as Rest - Assignment Example

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Slavery and Prejudice: The Antecedents of Discrimination. Based on the Case Study “There is no such thing as Rest” Kimberley Williams Strayer University Instructor: Paula Moore Sociology 100 February 12, 2012 Abstract Slavery as a notion has been around through the history of human civilization; and has left its mark on the psyche of the individuals who indulged in slavery as well as those who were enslaved…
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Slavery and Prejudice: The Antecedents of Discrimination. Based on the Case Study There is no such Thing as Rest
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Download file to see previous pages The Civil War of 1861-65 led to legislation that abolished Slavery from the United Nations of America, but it was only after the Civil Rights movement a century later that African Americans were given an equal status with other citizens. The long-standing prejudices against those of African origin date back to before the abolishing of slavery; and still exist in milder forms. Increasing interaction between communities and heightening awareness of similarities instead of differences are ways of reducing these long-standing prejudices. Slavery and Prejudice: The Antecedents of Discrimination. The notion of “Slavery” seems to have been around from the earliest civilizations; and there are mentions of the use of slaves for labor in ancient texts from different parts of the world (Carey, 2009). Often, the slaves would be prisoners of war, or members of a less strong group. Drescher (2009; pp 4-5) claims that the characteristic that distinguishes slaves is that some individual or group has the right to “possess, buy, sell, discipline, transport, liberate, or otherwise dispose of the bodies and behavior of other individuals.” After the fall of the Roman Empire, the instances of Slavery reduced from many European nations, and were sometimes replaced by instances of other forms of bonded servitude; but around the mid 15th century the Portuguese started using slaves to work on sugar plantations, and this led to resurgence in slave-trade (Carey, 2009). At the same time, the Catholic Church allowed them to acquire any individuals of non – Christian faith as slaves (Carey, 2009). Over the next century, slaves of African origin were acquired for hard labor, and often illegally. In 1528, the first slave arrived on what was to become the United States of America (Carey, 2011). As new colonies were settled, more European countries brought slaves with them. In Europe, the signs of racial stigmatism had become visible, by restricting the entry of African slaves because of the growing number of individuals with African origin (Carey, 2011). As the occupation of the New World grew, the number of slaves taken there also increased. Although they were initially called servants, a number of states legalized slavery in the 17th century; sealing their fate (Carey, 2009; Davis, 2006). Slaves were required to work long hours, and were given only very basic amenities with no comforts or privileges. A majority of the African slaves were concentrated in the southern states on plantations. They worked on the production of cotton, grain, sugar and tobacco; but received no share of the profits their masters made (Davis, 2006). As described by Northrup (1853), the slaves were expected to be at work by first light, and only finished their assigned tasks late at night. They had little rest, and received only the bare minimum of provisions (Northrup, 1853). Through the two centuries that followed, a number of theories – both religious and academic – were developed about the ‘sub-human’ abilities of persons of color. These theories postulated that Africans had lower ability for moral development, less intelligence and a higher propensity for violence; and were used as a means to justify the treatment and continued enslavement of Africans and their children (Davis, 2006). The Civil War from 1861 – ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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