If there is one dark side of human evolution that is possibly worse than most, it’d be this one. Slavery was and still is a crime against humanity. However, slavery has some chapters we’re not quite as familiar with. For example, someone who owed a debt to another but could not afford to pay it would pay it off through slave labor. This was a common practice in Ancient Greece and even Egypt for a long time. Of course, some were not released from this and were kept as slaves even after paying their debt. Yet this was more uncommon. Overall, we practiced slavery in some form or another for at least 11,000 years now. Women were some of the most common slaves among the rich, especially in monarchies. They might also be taken as “wives” as spoils of war for invading armies too. Other people, more often than not poorer classes, were taken as property.
The Roman Empire was known for having “Chattel Slave Classes.” This was a class of people that became the property of the enslaver. Slavery took on a different look by the 1200s when Europeans began to start forcing African black men and women, even children, to be slaves. Of course, other Africans used people as slaves both before, during, and after Europeans came in. The American slave trade stands as a profoundly dark and disturbing chapter in human evolution, characterized by the forced enslavement, brutal treatment, and dehumanization of millions of African people. This abhorrent practice not only caused immeasurable suffering and loss of life but also perpetuated systemic racism and inequalities that continue to reverberate through society today.
Where Do We Find this Stuff? Here Are Our Sources:
United States Library of Congress
United States Department of State
International Labour Organization
Public Broadcasting Service (PBS)