What is the Transatlantic Slave Trade? The word “transatlantic” means across the Atlantic Ocean. As for the phrase “slave trade”, I assume everybody understands what it means. Well, if you don’t know what “slave trade” means, it is merely the buying and selling of human beings to be utilized as slaves.
The Transatlantic Slave Trade was the unscrupulous activity of shopping for human beings (slaves and non slaves) from West Africa and taking them over the Atlantic Ocean to America and the West Indies where they were eventually sold as slaves. The Transatlantic Slave Trade happened between the 15th and the 19th hundred years. Other names for the transatlantic slave trade are the Atlantic slave trade and the “Triangular Trade”.
The term the “Triangular Trade” came about mainly because that the slave trade system included three continents – Africa, Europe and America, which came to form something like a triangle collectively. The slave traders traveled from Europe to West Africa, where they bought the slaves and captured some and then took them to the West Indies and America and some to Europe thereby forming the triangle. When the slaves from West Africa arrived in the Americas, they mainly worked well in coffee, cigarette, cotton, and sugars plantations.
Others were also forced to work in rice areas and in gold and silver mines. The ladies slaves worked well as domestic servants for his or her White experts mainly. Lots of the women slaves were raped very by their experts often. Since slaves were considered property and not human beings, these were sold at marketplaces along with other goods unfortunately. It really is worth noting that before the Europeans coming to Africa for the first time and starting the transatlantic slave trade, Africans themselves had their own form of slavery.
Many historians believe that it was the already existing African slave trade and Africans preparedness to sell their own siblings as slaves that motivated the Europeans to start participating in the slave trade business. In addition to the information above on the transatlantic slave trade, it’s important to note it wasn’t the whole of Europe that was involved in slave trade. The slave trade was first started by the Portuguese before other countries in Europe such as Britain, Spain, France, etc implemented. There were lots of techniques the Europeans obtained African slaves to be delivered outside Africa.
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Slaves of battle: Before and during the transatlantic slave trade period, Africans were already involved in the slave business. Prisoners and captives of conflicts and wars between cultural groups were usually used as slaves by chiefs and warriors. These slaves were then sold to the Europeans during the transatlantic slave trade, making Africa play an extremely prominent role during the slave trade. Criminals and prisoners: Another way to obtain slaves was prisoners or people who acquired committed crimes against the gods or their various areas. During the olden days in Africa, people found guilty of legal activities or offending the gods were often punished when you are banished off their villages or by enslavement since at that time there were no prisons.
With slavery becoming a very profitable business, several convicted criminals or ‘sinners’ were punished by enslavement instead of banishment. African chiefs and kings sold these enslaved criminals or ‘sinners’ to the European slave buyers. The main reason why these convicted criminals or ‘sinners’ were sold into slavery was in order that they could no more stay of their various neighborhoods and commit sins and crimes.
Another major reason these offenders were sold into slavery was mainly because that it was extremely lucrative selling these to the Europeans. Tribute slaves: Tribute slaves were slaves who had been gifted to kings and chiefs by other prominent people in culture in order to show appreciation or to say thank you to the chiefs or kings.
During the transatlantic slave trade era, most chiefs ended up selling their tribute slaves to the European slave traders. Kidnappings: Some slaves were innocent people who had been captured during raids and kidnappings. Seeing how extremely profitable the slave trade business was with the Europeans, some unethical chiefs and common Africans began raiding and kidnapping their own folks from their farms and other desolate places to be sold into slavery. Sometimes these unethical men would raid whole neighborhoods and villages and capture mainly women and children to be sold into slavery.