The US’s social, political, and economic development is significantly shaped by slavery among African Americans. Most of the laws, human rights, social and cultural revolutions resonated on addressing ideologies on recognizing black Americans’ rights. While the blacks were the most affected by slavery, women, especially of the African American origin, were major culprits of sexual molesting (Hartman 8). Women revolutionists addressed racial and gender balance (Hartman 12). Women’s slavery literature articulated the effects of servitude and its contribution to American society. This essay will highlight exclusively gendered slavery aspects by addressing specific literature, justifying diversity, and exploring future planning effectiveness.
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Learning Plan: Exploring Literacy
During the US’s pre-independence era, Black Americans were held as slaves, especially in southern states, where they worked for the whites. The duties were assigned regardless of gender, making women more vulnerable due to their biological nature. Artists, philosophers, and scholars contributed varied literature that ignited the anti-slavery revolution (Hall 1756). In his insight into Thistle Wood’s biography while living in Jamaica, Douglas Hall outlines how slavery brutality took roots with more women’s suffering and exploitation (Hall 1755). Slaves faced beatings, sexual harassment, vicious punishments, and starvation until “death was around the corner” (Hall 1775). However, the slaves were forced to tolerate inhuman treatment.
Gender-based slavery is also depicted in John Gabriel Stedman’s diary as analyzed by William Blake. Stedman was a volunteer soldier who fought against anti-slavery Black Americans rebels and kept drawings of events throughout the war times (Stedman 20). Although Stedman defended slavery, his drawings were the basis of uprisings against slavery. He drew the soldiers assaulting naked women depicting a sense of sexual assaults (Stedman 20). Admittedly, the gender-based slavery was highly pronounced as shown by Stedman. Hartman also witnessed the Suriname war and explains how Oronooko, a young brave African fighter, confronted white soldiers (15). Oronooko found herself in Suriname after falling into a trick and sold to the whites in Suriname (Behn 2; Hartman 16). She led rebellion against slavery in Suriname.
Slavery is also portrayed in the history of Mary Prince, as edited by Thomas Pringle. She was born and raised as a slave and thus experienced the degrading of the slaves’ dignity. Her mother was a slave, and she was sold severally to different slaveholders (Prince 65). Her life was a misery since she was exchanged from one slave owner to the other, reducing a slave into a property of the white.
Slave trade literature was contributed by diverse people, including men, women, whites, blacks, slaves, slave owners, artists, philosophers, abolitionists, and anti-abolitionists. While different personalities cooperated in addressing slavery, they also differed due to conflicts of interest. Abolitionists collaborated in fighting slavery to address division that threatened the unity between the southerners and the northerners (Stedman 26). Moreover, religious groups supported anti-slavery teachings (Hartman 11). Revolutionists from diverse social groups united, met and staged boycotts to communicate their dissatisfaction. In addition, diverse categories of revolutionists contributed to abolishing slavery.
Effectiveness of the Learning Plan and Future Planning
The learning plan of slavery literature enables individuals to understand the development, growth, and contemporary meaning of servitude. While slavery is viewed negatively, it also contributed to the economies’ growth when the US’s southern states depended on serfs working in their firms. Most of the political and social issues were also addressed by anti-slavery movements. Issues of gender equality, homosexuality, and ownership rights for the blacks were achieved through the revolutions (Prince 65). The perception of slavery has since changed, and different approaches are adopted to address unjust slavery completely (Beckles 89). The reliance on inexpensive inmate labor by most corporations today can be treated as a form of slavery.
In conclusion, slavery in America is ambiguous; while some literature portrays different abolitionists’ unity, at times the white abolitionists differed with the blacks due to the latter’s varied interests. The blacks integrated slavery with other themes, such as racism, gender equality, and politics which complicated the unity of purpose. The problem of slavery was, thus, not fully addressed, and it still affects Americans up to date.
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Beckles, Hilary. Black Masculinity in Caribbean Slavery. 2010.
Behn, Aphra. Oroonoko: or, the Royal Slave. A True History. Will. Canning, 1930.
Hall, Douglas, and Thomas Thistlewood. In Miserable Slavery: Thomas Thistlewood in Jamaica, 1750-86. University of West Indies Press, 1999.
Prince, Mary. The History of Mary Prince: A West Indian Slave. University of Michigan Press, 1997.
Hartman, Saidiya. “Lose Your Mother: A Journey along the Atlantic Slave Route.” Journal of American Studies, vol. 44, no. 1, 2010.
Stedman, John Gabriel. Stedman’s Surinam: Life in an Eighteenth-Century Slave Society. An Abridged, Modernized Edition of Narrative of a Five Years Expedition Against the Revolted Negroes of Surinam. JHU Press, 1992.