Academic Master


Slavery in Africa

Defenders of slavery posed an argument that Africa was already involved in slavery. That Africans enslaved themselves .That Britain and other slave countries were doing a moral legal trade because they were helping Africans from captivity in their countries. The slavery that happened in Africa was of much difference with the transatlantic slave trade. Slaves in Africa were prisoners of war or victims of political punishment and thus slavery in Africa was something which was not held with value.

The pro slavery supporters argued that slavery was acceptable in the bible in Abraham times. With close examination of the bible teachings slave trade was morally wrong and abominable .the anti-slavery society used biblical verses like Luke 16:13 ‘no man can serve two masters’ which clearly demonstrated how the bible was against slavery.

There was an argument that taking Africans from their countries could be of benefit to them. They argued that Africans were illiterate and savage. Dr. James Hunt (1864) in his book Negros place in nature, said that “in Africa owing to their natural improvidence, the Negros are more frequently than not half-starved and therefore half developed race; but when they are regularly and adequately fed, they became healthier, better developed and more humanized “(p .g 22) .contrary to this argument many Africans resisted and preferred death to being take as slaves. Many committed suicide on the way and life expectancy in the plantations was very low.

Unit 6

The pro supporters had it that in case less oppressive countries could not have been involved in the trade more oppressive countries could have been involved and it could have been worse, thus they implied that the less oppressive countries had to save the situation by being involved in slavery. If something is wrong bad or good people are not obligated to execute it. Hammond (1845) in his book slavery, terrorism and Islam says that” be the sin, the danger and evils of slavery all our own. We compel, we ask none to share them with us.”(p.g.19)

Many merchants and planters in various industries depended on slave labor and abolishing slavery could have been economically disastrous .The argument is not ethical and also to some extent it’s true. This argument was difficult to address.


Donald, D. (1971). The Proslavery Argument Reconsidered. The Journal of Southern History, 37(1), 3-18.

Hunt, J. (1863). On the Negro’s place in nature. Trübner, for the Anthropological Society.



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