Brutality and Pervasiveness of American Slavery

Were you aware that American slavery was less inhumane before the Duke of York’s enactments, promotion, and incentivization of slavery? Were you aware that several cultures (Dutch, Spanish, French, West African) often were less inhumane than the English form of slavery the Duke and his colleagues promoted in the American colonies? Were you aware of the extent to which slave masters and other whites could be brutal to slaves? That slaves generally had no legal rights to marry, own property, earn income, obtain protection from extreme abuse, leave their masters’ premises without written passes, purchase their freedom, and become citizens upon manumission? Were you aware of the extent to which the tentacles of the slave society intruded into virtually aspects of American life for what is still the majority of American history? That the state and national governments found it difficult to overcome the power of the slave society over America’s political life, economy, social life, and culture?

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