The impact of slave trade in Africa

The impact of slave trade in Africa

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The impact of slave trade in Africa

From the mid of the 15th century, Africa go into into a distinctive relationship with Europe that headed to the desolation and depopulation of Africa, but backed to the prosperity and development of Europe. Since then until the end of the 19th century, Europeans initiated to inaugurate a trade for African detainees.

At first this swapping only enhanced a trade in persons that already were within Europe, in which Europeans had enslaved each other. Some enslaved Africans had also reached Europe, the Middle East and other parts of the world before the mid-15th century, as a result of a trade in human beings that had also long existed in Africa. It was in this period of time when the transatlantic slave trade was started, when Portugal, and subsequently other European kingdoms, were finally able to expand overseas and reach Africa. The Portuguese first began to kidnap people from the west coast of Africa and to take those they enslaved back to Europe. It was estimated that, by early 16th century, 10% of the labor population in Europe was made of Africans. This slave trade led to a huge change in political, economic and social structures in Africa and forced the Africans to resist and engage in enslavement as discussed in this essay below.

Between 1400 and 1900, the African continent encountered four concurrent slave trades. The major and most well-known is the trans-Atlantic slave trade where, beginning in the 15th century, slaves shifted from West Africa, West Central Africa, and Eastern Africa to the European colonies in the New World. The three other slave trades — the trans-Saharan, Red Sea, and Indian Ocean slave trades — are much older and predate the trans-Atlantic slave trade. During the trans-Saharan slave trade, slaves were taken from south of the Saharan desert and shipped to Northern Africa. In the Red Sea slave trade, slaves were taken from inland of the Red Sea and shipped to the Middle East and India. In the Indian Ocean slave trade, slaves were taken from Eastern Africa and shipped either to the Middle East, India or to plantation islands in the Indian Ocean.

The slave trade brought about a negative impact on African societies and led to the long-term insolvency of West Africa. This increased effects that were initially present among its leaders, affinities, monarchies and in society. It greatly impacted on the politics of African countries. The great impact was on the evolution of political Authority in Western part of African. The Absolutism was raised by the Trans-Atlantic slave trade in the pre-colonial West Africa by approximately 17% to 35%. At the same time, it led to reduction of democracy and tolerance. In the same period of time, there was introduction of slavery-induced absolutism which greatly influenced the structure of African political institutions in the colonial era and thereafter. The British colonies exported more slaves in the same era of slave trade that were ruled more indirectly by colonial commissioners. This indirect rule of ruling relied mostly on sub-national absolutisms that controlled population and extracted surplus. In process the converted absolutist administrative civilizations into rule of law. The post-colonial state power, like the colonial authority before it, lacked the governmental tool and political thump to assimilate these local specialists, even at the times when they required to. From this viewpoint, state-failure in West Africa may be entrenched in a political and economic history that is unique to Africa in several reverences, a past that dates slightest as far back as the time of the transatlantic slave trade.

The slave trade produced chances for wealth creation for any person who could manage to rally societies to attack other townships and communities or start up captures, making substantial political resistance in the process, which even resulted to the breaking up of administrative entities. For example, it has been argued that the slave trade was partly responsible for the wars that led to the break-up of the Yoruba state (Bowen 2006). Truly, scholars have also found numerical proof that areas that had higher slave-trading intensity tend to have a greater percentage of different groups in the present day.

In this report, I postulate that the same case of political friction triggered by the slave trade would also have swayed political organizations on both the village and town levels. Although states could break up as a consequence of political friction, such a break-up is unreasonable in the case of villages or townships as, excluding in very occasional circumstances, their residents are geographically bounded together.  I debate, then, that, villages and towns have a habit of forming various political crowds in response to political friction. These political groups function to guard their own members and take benefit of members of other groups.

The slave trade had shocking effects in Africa. Economic inducements for generals and societies to participate in the slave trade supported an atmosphere of lawlessness and fierceness. Depopulation and a persistent panic of detention made economic and agricultural growth nearly difficult all over much of West African countries. Most of the people who were taken captive in African countries were women in their childbearing years and young men who would have been starting families (Leonard, 2017, p 27). The European slavers generally left behind the people who were aged, people with disabilities, or otherwise dependent individuals who were not able to contribute to the economic sector of their societies. This greatly impacted negatively on the economic growth.

The transatlantic slave trade generated great wealth for many individuals, companies, and countries, but the brutal trafficking in human beings and the large numbers of deaths that resulted eventually sparked well-organized opposition to the trade. This resulted in stunted economic growth since trade is one of the major promoters of economic growth. Although slavery was highly profitable, it had a negative impact on the economy in the southern parts of Africa. It hindered the growth and the expansion of industry and cities and subsidized to high arrears, soil exhaustion, and a lack of technological innovation.

Another factor that suggests that the Atlantic trade had negative impacts onAfrica’s economy was the occurrence of European and African attacking, capture, andtorture of Africans from the coastal regions and the hinterlands. These disturbances preventedAfricans who were not involved in the trade from doing business in peace and securitydeprived of the danger of being captured and sold to Europeans. ‘In Africa, the trading groups could make no contribution to technological improvement because their role and preoccupation took their minds and energies away from production. In contrast, the trade helped the west by emerging its technology with the importation of skilled Africans of all ages. This introduction marked the commencement of Africa’s brain drain that continues to hamper development in the continent resulting in reduced economic growth.

Social impact of the slave trade also affected Africa continent greatly. It is here that powerful reactions and the weight of collective memory press most heavily. Current Africans are regularly told that the present state of their societies derives from their ‘‘ugly’’ and ‘‘savage’’ participation in the slave trade.

Nevertheless, the grief of detached families and the practices of enslavement all through the trans-Atlantic trade were collectively demoralizing for victims of the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Through the trade, the Africans who were enslaved or in danger with craving constantly resisted the brutalizing restrains of this tradition. Communities and townships built fortifications and warning organizations to inhibit attacks from traders or enemy groups. If captured and forced onto ships for the Middle Passage, enslaved Africans resisted by organizing hunger strikes, forming rebellions, and even committing suicide by leaping overboard rather than living in slavery. These rebellions were costly for European traders, and led them to avoid certain regions known for this resistance strategy, such as Upper Guinea, except during periods of high slave trade market demand (lecture 8). This eventually resulted in having decreased numbers of Africans entering the trans-Atlantic slave trade from these regions with resistance strategies, and this suggested that African resistance approaches could be helpful.

In conclusion, the African continent experienced difficult time during the times of slave trade by the Europeans between the 15th and 19th centuries. The people lived with fear of being captured and could not run their daily activities with peace and harmony. The trans-Atlantic slave trade being the major, negatively impacted the Africa greatly on the political, social and economic growth. .

The roots of the predicament facing Africa are in the structural, economic, and political disruptions that the continent inherited from the European slavers and colonizers. African societies have a big challenge in advancing their economic development since they inherited constitutions from European powers and they do not reflect the structural realisms of their societies. However, there is no uncertainty that the slave trade generated remarkable social problems in Africa, and that these problems have severe effects on its current realities. Surely, the demography of Africa was greatly affected by the exceptional shipping of African populations to foreign lands.