BC: Paige Copper
FC: Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade
1: People have estimated that between 1500 to 1900, the population of African remained stagnant, or even declined, and Africa was the only continent to be affected this way. | Slavery existed in Africa before the slave trade began. It began as a way of punishment for crimes, but then the Portuguese had a moment of truth - why not use slaves? New European empires lacked a work force that could withstand the harsh climate and tropical diseases, but they knew African's were more than capable of it. The Portuguese began to kidnap Africans and ship them from the west coast of Africa back to Europe. It is estimated that 11 million people were shipped, and only 9.6 million survived the "middle passage".
2: The incredible change in Africa's population was a very big factor that led to it's economic downfall. Europe was taking Africa's human and natural resources, helping it's own development while Africa suffered. This inequality created the racism that still exists today. In reality, before Europe took "help" from Africa, Africa was ahead in economic development. Before the 1500's, gold from places including Africa gave Europe the means for a economic take-off. Before Europe practically ruined Africa, the empire of Mali was said to be one of the richest and most powerful states in the world.
3: Slaves were always captured, of course, but not always by Europeans. Africans began to kidnap their own and trade them in, especially wealthy leaders and powerful merchants. They would trade their fellow Africans in for firearms and similar European inventions. Eventually, though, the demand for slaves was so severe that in order to get them, warfare and raiding had to come into play. This began happening as the sugar plantations in the Americas needed more workers.
4: In the end, Africa was damaged to a point where we are still getting over it to this day. The death tolls were unimaginable and slaves were treated with cruelty and put into horrible environments and situations. Families were torn apart and it's more than likely that they never reunited. Then, death came in more than one way. Famines, military raids, and more. In all, it was a horrible period.
5: Resources: http://www.inmotionaame.org/migrations/topic.cfm?migration=1&topic=9 http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/abolition/africa_article_01.shtml http://africanhistory.about.com/od/slavery/tp/TransAtlantic001.htm http://wiki.answers.com/Q/How_did_the_slave_trade_affect_Africa (Not my question, I just found it)