Slavery in Northern and Southern America

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Slavery in the island of Barbados and North America aimed at the provision of human labor in the agricultural sector, by the black population. Over the years, the southern slavery presumed to be harsher than the Latin America slavery. In North America, the Catholic Church granted slaves the right to marry, seek relief from their cruel masters and even to buy their freedom. However, in reality, there was no distinctive protection of slaves by either the church or the courts. The masters only freed older adults, who were less productive or the sick and at times freed people just for them to reduce the financial burden.

Child mortality in the southern slavery was thrice higher than in the north. This is because expectant women had no maternity leave. Most of the women gave birth at their places of work. Many of the infants died in their first year of life. The major factor that contributed to the death of these children was undernourishment. The infants were born less than 5.5 pounds, which is a critical low birth weight today (Miller 4).

Slaves in the United States sustained their population naturally through reproduction.  The Catholic Church promoted the right to marry among the slaves with a vision of sustaining their population. In contrary, in the Caribbean and Brazil, slave death rate was high. Hence, they depended on the constant import of slaves from Africa (Davis 3).

Racial profiling was the major challenge in the United States slavery trade. They adopted the notion that anyone with a black mother is black (Matson 2). In contrary, the Portuguese and Spanish had a soft spot for the blacks, majorly due to a low number of European women. They recognize every member of the society using a criterion with a wide range of racial gradation, such as black, octoroon, mestizo and quadroon (Blassingame 3).

In conclusion, the population of slaves could not be maintained in Brazil due to high mortality rate. Racial profiling in the United States disrupted the peaceful coexistence of slaves and the whites. Slaves in the United States had the chance to sustain their population as they had the right to marry granted to them by the Catholic Church.

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  1. Blassingame, John W. The Slave Community: Plantation Life in the Antebellum South. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010. Print.
  2. Davis, David B. The Problem of Slavery in Western Culture. New York, N.Y: Oxford University Press, 2013. Print.
  3. Matson, Cathy D. The Economy of Early America: Historical Perspectives & New Directions. University Park, Pa: Pennsylvania State Univ. Press, 2016. Print.
  4. Miller, Randall M. Dictionary of Afro-American Slavery. Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press, 2012. Print.
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