DISCLAIMER: I lub all the types. Stereotypes used. Spelling has been compromised.
ISFJ - makes you a super sentimental gift from scratch (if level 10 grandma, then didn’t need to pull an all nighter to finish your beloved gift) - laced with love, unicorn tears, and mermaid dreams
INFJ - *pinterests* *tumblrs* *scours the whole internet for the perfect gift for you* Ends up with an incredibly thoughtful DIY gift that fills in a void you never knew you had
ISFP - 10/10 will make something for you. 1/10 will forget to give it to you. 8/10 of you will not have any idea where to hang it/what to do with it. 1/10 of you will be surprised by the gift bc you forgot your own bday. 1/10 of all isfp gifts is a flower crown
INFP - will make you cry with their gift because it is something you briefly mentioned 0.3 times offhandedly that one time. Just kidding! They’ll prolly make themselves cry when they tell you the deep emotional backstory behind their gift and it’s secret heart-wrenching significance that has nothing to do with you
INTJ - practical gift giver #1! If they run out of ideas, they might skip the gift altogether and plot world domination instead. It’s thoughtful because as a gift to you, they won’t make you a minion/slave worker in their new world order
ISTJ - practical gift giver #2! gift card giver! might give you a textbook/rulebook/agenda/notebook-to-write-more-rules/anything-to-organize-your-mess-of-a-life
ISTP - gets you something to do - i.e. sports equipment, gym membership, woodworking lessons, fix-your-car-yourself lessons, lazer tag, paintball, trampoline dodgeball (this shit is fur real, son) (be prepared to get your ass whooped)
INTP - ERRRORRRR cannot process giftgiving.exe.
The following file is missing or corrupted: C:\Windows\socialnorms.exe. Press any key to continue.
ESFJ - buys you something for your kitchen. Esfj has really gotten into home decorating recently so you get some nice candles, potpourri, a spice rack … basically anything that smells so nice that you’ll never want to leave your house
ENFJ - buys you a super cute fluffy animal !!! !!! !!! omg look at its cute little nose! its cute little ears! I’ll take care of you forever! I’ll feed you until your belly becomes a balloon! *whispers* Never leave me. *snaps to reality* Oh what? Oh …. ya … I meant you enfj, never leave me ^^ … …. … wait wut? *enfj moves in*
ESFP - gets you tickets TO THE EXCLUSIVE DANCEPARTY YOU’VE BEEN WANTING TO GOOOOO. Esfp knows you’ve been putting in all those hours at work so you need a well deserved break with some hotass dancers—No? Well, fuck you too Mary Lynn. Just trying to spice up your life a little so you’ll stop complaining about how Aaron was a regrettable fckboy. Gosh.
ENFP - wasn’t sure what to get you for the longest time. Too many ideas and wallet too skinny. Asks you what you wanted. Diligently asks your friends about what you really want. Does not end up getting anything for you. Makes it up with a spontaneous ski trip.
ESTJ - sets you up with a mutual fund at the bank with a diverse portfolio. Takes you to a surprise party (actually a networking party) organized by estj’s long-term monogamous significant other at their amazingly affordable home where they live together. Estj leaves with 5 competitive job offers.
ENTJ - treats you to a lovely steak dinner prepared by a highly paid professional in-home chef in their mansion atop of a hill belooking the peasants and commonfolk below who are building a statue of entj at minimum wage.
ESTP - isn’t around during your birthday because they’re climbing up Mt. Everest/naked fishing/shark diving - but they take time out of their busy day to skype with you until the reception cuts off. When you do meet up, estp blesses you with stories from their trip as you live vicariously through them and promises to take you with them next time. Estp txts you from Australia the next day.
Category 1 (acquaintances): bath soap or gag gifts // Category 2 (friends): a book your entp thought you’d benefit from reading (educate yourself mtherfker … with the kama sutra ;)) // Category 3 (family): relatives do not subscribe to the satanic rituals of gift giving
Maria is a photography project created by Turkish photographer Pinar Yolaçan. Pinar traveled to the Brazilian Island of Ithaparica in the state of Bahia, a 40 minute boat ride from the capital city of Salvador. The subjects of her portraits are all Afro-Brazilian women ranging from the ages of twenty-seven and ninety.
“I found a lot of inspiration in the African culture: Salvador was once the largest port for the slave trade in the New World, and while Ithaparica is one the poorest islands in Brazil’s rural northeast, people seemed very eccentric and sophisticated.”
“[Mara is] a very common Portuguese name of course, and is either the first or second name of almost all the women I photographed in Bahia, and of course, the icon of Mary is ever-present in Bahia. Women wear necklaces with the Virgin Mary’s face on them and decorate the walls of their homes and stores with her image. Obviously none of my models look like these traditional depictions of Maria, so I am referring to this religious icon when I call the women Maria. The title is also a commentary on the colonial process of renaming (or creating an identity for) people.”
“The women’s garments are made out of fabric I bought in local fabric stores and of placenta and other animal parts that I bought in Salvador’s São Joaquim market. I was particularly interested in placenta because it’s a female organ that develops during birth. Most of the clothes are inspired from the Baroque era and Portuguese colonial style architecture in Salvador. There is also lots of draping - similar to biblical statues.”
The following list regroups some of the most important dates in Haitian history. Other important instances (such as the complete chronology of the Haitian Revolution) have been omitted to make this list more comprehensible. (Furthermore, this outlined timeline does not go beyond the end of the Duvalierist Regime.) References provided at this end of this page should be used for a fuller analysis of the dates presented. This document ought to be regarded as an introductory tool.
1492-1500: European arrival to Hispaniola (present day Haiti and Dominican Republic); island inhabited by Taino Arawak population
1492-1560s: Steady decline of Taino population, + or – 86% of population dies within few decades of European contact (original population estimate vary from + or – 1 million to 3.77 million in 1492, to a scarce dozens by the 1560s)
1502: Introduction of first African slaves
1521: First slave revolt in the New World
1600s: Rise of French Flibustiers culture on Spanish territory
1664: French West Indian Company administers island of Tortuga
1685: Louis XIV’s Code Noir issued
1697: Treaty of Ryswick, France gets ⅓ of the Western shore of Hispaniola (Saint-Domingue, now Haiti)
1724-1803: French government directly administers Saint-Domingue as its colony
1785-1790: Peak of colonial era; approximately 30, 000 African slaves are imported each year to Saint-Domingue (slave population of about 500, 000 by outbreak of the slave uprising)
1789: Beginning of the French Revolution, hostilities explode in Saint-Domingue between (and among) whites and the gens de couleurs
1791 (21August): Bois-Caiman Voodoo Ceremony?
1791 (22 August): Slave uprising begins (first in the North)
1793: Gradual abolition of slavery in Saint-Domingue via French commissioners Sonthonax and Polverel
1794 (4 February): National Convention abolishes slavery in all French possessions
1794-1801: Louverture rises to power in Saint-Domingue
1795: Treaty of Basel – Spain cedes Santo-Domingo to France
1801 (January): Louverture campaigns in Santo-Domingo, now part of the French Empire
1801 (July); Louverture’s Constitution, partly in reaction to Napoleon seizing power in France
1801 (November): Moïse rebellion against Louverture
1802: Napoleon’s Leclerc expedition
1803 (November): French capitulation, Battle of Vertières
1804 (1 January): Haiti proclaims her independence; Jean-Jacques Dessalines becomes the first leader
1806 (October): Assassination of Dessalines
1807-1820: Henri Christophe succeeds Dessalines
1807/11-1820: Haiti secedes between a kingdom in the North (governed by Christophe) and a Republic in the South (presided by Pétion)
1811: Henri Christophe crowns himself Henry 1er, governs the North of Haiti as kingdom until his suicide in 1820
1807-1818: Alexandre Pétion becomes president of Southern Haiti until his death in 1818
1818-1843: Jean-Pierre Boyer is president of Haiti
1820: Boyer reunites the two Haitis after the death of Henri Christophe; annexes the Dominican Republic
1825: Indemnity to France for recognition of independence, originally 150M Francs (at 1789 values)
1826: Boyer’s (particularly unpopular) Rural Code
1838: Indemnity reduced to 90M, advantage tariffs for French commerce maintained
1843: “Liberal” Revolt against Boyer
1844: Dominican Republic declares independence from Haiti (and in1864 from Spain)
1844: Piquet Rebellion
1844-1915: With few notable exceptions, beginning of a period of political instability
1849-1859: Faustin Soulouque becomes president and crowns himself emperor of Haiti
1879-1888: Presidency of Lysius Salomon
1890s-1915: Greatest period of political instability, sovereignty undermined, less Haitian-owned businesses, social classes tighten; “color question” intensify
1915-1934: US Marine Occupation, puppet presidencies to serve US and elite interests
1917-1929: Cacos Wars againts the US Occupation
1919: Death of Caco leader Charlemagne Peralte, photo of dead body paraded by Americans to discourage further resistance
1920s: Emergence of the Haitian Indigéniste movement
1928: Haitian intellectual Jean Price-Mars publishes Ainsi Parla L’Oncle and strongly criticizes the Haitian elite for their lack of social usefulness
1930s: “Color question” intensify further; Marine occupation seen as an humiliation
1934: Departure of Americans, yet political ties remain
1934: Creation of the Haitian Communist Party with members such as Jacques Roumain
1930s-1940s: Noirisme movement “grows out” of Indigénisme
1946: “Revolution of 1946”; victory of Noirisme movement; election of Dumarsais Estimé
1950: Coup against Estimé
1950-1956: Presidency of Paul Eugène Magloire
1957: Election of 1957; François Duvalier becomes president
1957-1986: Duvalier Dictatorship
1964: François Duvalier names himself president for life (until 1971)
1971-1986: Jean-Claude succeeds his father as next dictator of Haiti
1986: End of Duvalier dictatorship
1986-?: Interminable transition to democracy
* Please do not copy this list without permission from its authors, that is, both moderators at HH and universalayititoma. Use for educational purposes only.
Saint Peter Claver - Feast Day: September 9th - Both Calendars
Patron: Against Slavery; Foreign Missions; Race Relations; Colombia; Diocese of Shreveport, and Lake Charles, Louisiana.
Symbols: Ship; Cockle Shell used for Baptizing; usually pictured Baptizing a Black Slave.
Peter was born of a distinguished family in Catalonia, Spain in 1581. He joined the Society of Jesus (Jesuits), and after his novitiate in Taragona was sent to the college of Montesione, at Palma in Majorca. There he met Brother Alphonse Rodriguez (also a saint), the humble porter of the convent. Alphonse set Peter’s soul on fire to save the souls of the African slaves — thousands being lost because there was no one to minister to them. His superiors finally sent Peter to New Granada in April of 1610. He was never to return to his native Spain.
By 1615 Peter finished his studies and was ordained a priest in Cartagena. When he made his final vows, he added a personal one: Peter, slave of the slaves forever. Here in this busy seaport city, in a hot, humid, tropical climate, Father Claver spent most of his priestly life. Cartagena was the principal slave market for the New World. Thousands of blacks were brought there, herded into warehouses and auctioned to the highest bidder. Captured in Africa, these slaves were chained in groups of six and crammed into the lower holds of ships designed to hold 100-200, but holding 600-800 humans. Their treatment was so inhumane that 1/3 of the slaves died in the sea journey.
It was to these people that Peter would minister. He would meet each slave ship as it arrived. Peter would go to the warehouses and bring them food, water, medicine and clothing, for, as he said “We must speak to them with our hands, before we try to speak to them with our lips”.
But most of all, he brought them God. While nursing them back to health, he would teach them of Christ, explain to them that they were loved by God more than they were abused by man, and that evil outraged God. He offered their only consolation: hope in the promises of God. Nearly three hundred thousand of them received baptism at his hands.
His apostolate extended beyond his care for slaves. He became a moral force, indeed, the apostle of Cartagena. He preached in the city square, gave missions to sailors and traders as well as country missions, during which he avoided, when possible, the hospitality of the planters and owners and lodged in the slave quarters instead.
After twenty-seven years of devotion to the black slaves, St. Peter Claver died at Cartagena on September 8, 1654. Leo XIII canonized him on January 15, 1888, proclaiming him special patron and protector of the negroes. St. Alphonsus Rodriguez, porter of the college, who inspired Peter to become a missionary for the slaves was canonized at the same time.
The Holy Spirit’s might and power is manifested in the striking decisions and bold actions of Peter Claver. A decision to leave one’s homeland never to return reveals a gigantic act of will, difficult for the contemporary mind to imagine. Peter’s determination to serve forever the most abused, rejected and lowly of all people is stunningly heroic. When we measure our lives against such a man’s, we become aware of our own barely used potential and of our need to open ourselves more to the jolting power of Jesus’ Spirit.
Peter Claver understood that concrete service like the distributing of medicine, food or brandy to his black brothers and sisters could be as effective a communication of the word of God as verbal preaching. As Peter Claver often said, “We must speak to them with our hands before we try to speak to them with our lips.”
Prayer to Saint Peter Claver
Dear Saint of our modern times, you were permeated with compassion for the oppressed, for human beings sold as slaves and treated as expendable beasts. While alleviating their natural ills, you also took away their spiritual ills, and taught them the surpassing knowledge of Christ. Inspire many of our contemporaries to become self-sacrificing missionaries like you. Amen.
sudden thought: if the atlantic slave trade powered the industrial revolution in America and Europe and built those empires, how did Russia China and Japan grow into world powers. i forgot my high school history
Are you trying to get me to do your homework for you? I mean, it’s going to work, since I like this question, but, you know. Don’t cheat, kids.
All right, now that my conscience has been totally 100% ameliorated, let’s do this.
There has been a lot of whitewashing of the Irish slave trade, partly by not mentioning it, and partly by labelling slaves as indentured servants. There were indeed indentureds, including English, French, Spanish and even a few Irish. But there is a great difference between the two. Indentures bind two or more parties in mutual obligations. Servant indentures were agreements between an individual and a shipper in which the individual agreed to sell his services for a period of time in exchange for passage, and during his service, he would receive proper housing, food, clothing, and usually a piece of land at the end of the term of service. It is believed that some of the Irish that went to the Amazon settlement after the Battle of Kinsale and up to 1612 were exiled military who went voluntarily, probably as indentureds to Spanish or Portuguese shippers.
King James II and Charles I also led a continued effort to enslave the Irish. Britain’s famed Oliver Cromwell furthered this practice of dehumanizing one’s next door neighbor.
The Irish slave trade began when James II sold 30,000 Irish prisoners as slaves to the New World. His Proclamation of 1625 required Irish political prisoners be sent overseas and sold to English settlers in the West Indies. By the mid 1600s, the Irish were the main slaves sold to Antigua and Montserrat. At that time, 70% of the total population of Montserrat were Irish slaves.
Ireland quickly became the biggest source of human livestock for English merchants. The majority of the early slaves to the New World were actually white.
From 1641 to 1652, over 500,000 Irish were killed by the English and another 300,000 were sold as slaves. Ireland’s population fell from about 1,500,000 to 600,000 in one single decade. Families were ripped apart as the British did not allow Irish dads to take their wives and children with them across the Atlantic. This led to a helpless population of homeless women and children. Britain’s solution was to auction them off as well.
During the 1650s, over 100,000 Irish children between the ages of 10 and 14 were taken from their parents and sold as slaves in the West Indies, Virginia and New England. In this decade, 52,000 Irish (mostly women and children) were sold to Barbados and Virginia.
The initial plan was to offer freedom to Irish slaves on the island of Barbados and elsewhere or to take more rebellious Irish slaves and transport them to Jamaica where they would be offered their freedom and 30 acres of land to work. Cromwell also launched appeals within England and the Americas for planters to come to the new colony of Jamaica. This met with little success and so Cromwell increased his drive to liberate and offer freedom & land to indentured servants in Barbados. The policy met with resistance from the plantation owners of Barbados as one would expect. They quickly complained about being short of labour to work their sugar crops. Therefore, many plantation owners moved along with their Irish slaves to Jamaica also and were granted land there.
At the same time another 30,000 Irish men and women were also transported and sold to the highest bidders in Jamaica. In 1656, Cromwell also ordered that 2,000 Irish children be taken to Jamaica and sold as slaves to English settlers as well. Repeated escape attempts were punished with hangings. Slaves who struck salve owners or plantation owners were burned alive in a gruesome manner. A visitor to Jamaica in 1687 reports that “they are nailed to the ground with crooked sticks on every limb and then applying the fires by degrees from the feet, burning them gradually up to the head, whereby their pains are extravagant”.
There was no racial consideration or discrimination, you were either a freeman or a slave, but there was aggressive religious discrimination, with the Pope considered by all English Protestants to be the enemy of God and civilization, and all Catholics heathens and hated. Irish Catholics were not considered to be Christians. On the other hand, the Irish were literate, usually more so than the plantation owners, and thus were used as house servants, account keepers, scribes and teachers. But any infraction was dealt with the same severity, whether African or Irish, field worker or domestic servant. Floggings were common, and if a planter beat an Irish slave to death, it was not a crime, only a financial loss, and a lesser loss than killing a more expensive African. African slaves were very expensive during the late 1600s (50 Sterling). Irish slaves came cheap (no more than 5 Sterling). If a planter whipped or branded or beat an Irish slave to death, it was never a crime. A death was a monetary setback, but far cheaper than killing a more expensive African. Parliament passed the Act to Regulate Slaves on British Plantations in 1667, designating authorized punishments to include whippings and brandings for slave offenses against a Christian. Irish Catholics were not considered Christians, even if they were freemen.
Like with what was done to African girls and women, the English masters quickly began breeding the Irish women for both their own personal pleasure and for greater profit. Children of slaves were themselves slaves, which increased the size of the master’s free workforce. Even if an Irish woman somehow obtained her freedom, her kids would remain slaves of her master. Thus, Irish moms, even with this new found emancipation, would seldom abandon their kids and would remain in servitude.
In time, the English thought of a better way to use these women (in many cases, girls as young as 12) to increase their market share: The settlers began to breed Irish girls and women with African men to produce slaves with a distinct complexion. These “mulatto” slaves brought a higher price than Irish livestock and, likewise, enabled the settlers to save money rather than purchase new African slaves. This practice of interbreeding Irish females with African men went on for several decades and was so widespread that, in 1681, legislation was passed “forbidding the practice of mating Irish slave women to African slave men for the purpose of producing slaves for sale.” In short, it was stopped only because it interfered with the profits of a large slave transport company.
England continued to ship tens of thousands of Irish slaves for more than a century. Records state that, after the 1798 Irish Rebellion, thousands of Irish slaves were sold to both America and Australia. One British ship even dumped 1,302 slaves into the Atlantic Ocean so that the crew would have plenty of food to eat.
Historical Irish immigration to Jamaica occurred primarily (but not exclusively) through importation of Irish slaves and also constituted [along with the Indian Diaspora and Chinese Diaspora …etc.] one of the largest recorded historical ethnic influxs into the country. Some Irish slaves in Jamaica were indentured servants – especially during the 19th century – but most more were complete chattel slaves imported by tens of thousands by the English. “Jamaican Patois” – which contains some words of Gaelic origin – is often spoken in a dialect(s) that is heavily Irish-influenced, with some minor Scottish-influence. Like Barbados, Jamaica has a sizable “White” population that incudes those of Irish ancestry.
There is, also, very little question that those brown, tanned faces you witness in your travels to the West Indies are very likely a combination of African and Irish ancestry. In 1839, Britain finally decided on it’s own to end it’s participation in Satan’s highway to hell and stopped transporting slaves. While their decision did not stop pirates from doing what they desired, the new law slowly concluded this chapter of nightmarish Irish misery.
Many people today will avoid calling the Irish slaves what they truly were: Slaves. They’ll come up with terms like “Indentured Servants” to describe what occurred to the Irish. However, in most cases from the 17th and 18th centuries, Irish slaves were nothing more than human cattle.
Enslaved peoples were brought to the Americas from many places in Africa, but a large majority came from relatively few ethnic groups. Drawing on a wide range of materials in four languages as well as on her lifetime study of slave groups in the New World, Gwendolyn Midlo Hall explores the persistence of African ethnic identities among the enslaved over four hundred years of the Atlantic slave trade. Hall traces the linguistic, economic, and cultural ties shared by large numbers of enslaved Africans, showing that despite the fragmentation of the diaspora many ethnic groups retained enough cohesion to communicate and to transmit elements of their shared culture. Hall concludes that recognition of the survival and persistence of African ethnic identities can fundamentally reshape how people think about the emergence of identities among enslaved Africans and their descendants in the Americas, about the ways shared identity gave rise to resistance movements, and about the elements of common African ethnic traditions that influenced regional creole cultures throughout the Americas.Drawing on a wide range of primary and secondary materials in four languages, Hall explores the persistence of African ethnic identity among slaves in the Americas and the Caribbean.
It needs saying that the rising death toll in Haiti is the result of an unnatural disaster. When the French colonized the place, it was the pearl of the Antilles. They imported slaves rapidly to build plantations, at some points amounting to more than a third of the New World slave trade. When they left, they demanded reparations for losing the property in bodies and land that amounted by 1900 to 80% of the national budget, paid by selling off the timber that kept hurricanes from devastating the island. By the time the debt was paid in 1947, the island was deep in a cycle of debt, deforestation, and military interventions by foreign powers that continues to this day. -Laura Briggs
The Zong massacre was the mass murder of 133 African slaves by the crew of the slave shipZong in the days following 29 November 1781.The Gregson slave-trading syndicate, based in Liverpool, owned the ship and sailed her in the Atlantic slave trade. As was common business practice, they had taken out insurance on the lives of the slaves as cargo. When the ship ran low on potable water following navigational mistakes, the crew threw slaves overboard into the sea to drown, partly in order to ensure the survival of the rest of the ship’s passengers, and in part to cash in on the insurance on the slaves, thus not losing money on the slaves who would have died from the lack of drinking water.
After the slave ship reached port at Black River, Jamaica, Zong’s owners made a claim to their insurers for the loss of the slaves. When the insurers refused to pay, the resulting court cases (Gregson v Gilbert (1783) 3 Doug. KB 232) held that in some circumstances, the deliberate killing of slaves was legal and that insurers could be required to pay for the slaves’ deaths. The judge, Lord Chief Justice, the Earl of Mansfield, ruled against the syndicate owners in this case, due to new evidence being introduced suggesting the captain and crew were at fault.
Following the first trial, freed slave Olaudah Equiano brought news of the massacre to the attention of the anti-slavery campaigner Granville Sharp, who worked unsuccessfully to have the ship’s crew prosecuted for murder. Because of the legal dispute, reports of the massacre received increased publicity, stimulating the abolitionist movement in the late 18th and early 19th centuries; the Zong events were increasingly cited as a powerful symbol of the horrors of the Middle Passage of slaves to the New World[…]
A monument to the killed slaves on Zong was installed at Black River, Jamaica, their intended port.
I don't mean this to sound like an attack or anything, I'm honestly just trying to learn. How is capitalism a racist system?
“Capitalism and Slavery
By the mid-19th century overt racism was mainstream academic orthodoxy. The growth of racialist consciousness in Europe was a direct result of colonial expansion and the resultant demand for cheap labor for the plantations. Chattel slavery, resurrected to exploit the resources of the new world, persisted far into the 19th century in the U.S. The few Europeans who ended up as semi-slaves in the New World had usually lost their citizenship because of convictions for petty crime. The demand for slave labor was not met in the homelands of the colonial powers, largely because the ruling classes feared the resulting social turmoil. The surplus population of European peasants was eventually utilized for wage slavery, whereas the aboriginal peoples of Africa and South America, whose darker skin color was an indelible identifying mark, provided the solution to labor shortages in the New World.
Slavery clearly required an ideological justification, for it was contrary both to the formal teachings of Christian charity and the notions of the inalienable "rights of man” propounded by the ideologues of the market and the Enlightenment:
“The slaves were in an inferior position economically. Gradually, white slaveowning society constructed a wall of color: that it was not the mode of slave production which was to be despised, but the slave: that the reason the black skin was the mark of the slave was that it was first the mark of human inferiority.
"In this manner the class problem of slavery became complicated and confused by the color question. The slaves, besides being an exploited social class, became, in the perverted thinking of the dominant society, an inferior race as well." —Richard Fraser, "The Negro Struggle and the Proletarian Revolution”
While it is difficult to date the beginning of this new racial ideology precisely, it is clear that there was an explosion of such notions beginning in the 16th century. Ashley Montagu made the following observation in his book Man’s Most Dangerous Myth: The Fallacy of Race:
“A study of the documents of the English and American slave traders down to the eighteenth century also serves to show that….many of these hardheaded, hardbitten men recorded their belief that their victims were often quite clearly their own mental equals and superior to many at home.
"It was only when voices began to make themselves heard against the inhuman traffic in slaves, and when these voices assumed the shape of influential men and organizations, that, on the defensive, the supporters of slavery were forced to look about them for reasons of a new kind to controvert the dangerous arguments of their opponents.”
The influence, clarity and sophistication of these “reasons” increased over the next several centuries, until by the 19th century, “race” was widely seen as the key determinant of human history. By explaining the success of European colonialism by divine sanction (or, after Darwin, “natural selection”), the ideologues of empire infused the colonialists with confidence and moral conviction. At the same time, missionaries undermined the victim’s will to resist with the gospel of “turning the other cheek” to the conquistadors and slave-drivers.
While it would hardly have occurred to a feudal lord to differentiate among his serfs on the basis of their skin color or type of hair, in the age of vast international empires, racial categorization helped make sense of the world. The belief in racial identity, racial purity and racial mission was a vital part of the “laager mentality” among the isolated and outnumbered colonials. In 1890, for example, 300 million Indians were ruled by a mere 6,000 British administrators, backed by only 70,000 soldiers.
The ideology of empire painted a picture of humane, brave, industrious and intelligent colonialists bringing the benefits of modern civilization to peoples who, for the most part, were portrayed as vicious, cowardly, lazy and stupid. Even when non-Europeans were given some positive characteristics, these were inevitably coupled with fatal flaws and organic weaknesses. Rudyard Kipling’s famous poem of 1899 saluting the American rape of the Philippines called on Uncle Sam to join with John Bull and:
“Take up the White Man’s burden— Send forth the best ye breed— Go bind your sons to exile To serve your captives’ need; To wait in heavy harness, On fluttered folk and wild— Your new-caught, sullen peoples, Half-devil and half-child.”
Scientific’ Racism in the 1800s…
By the end of the 19th century, the proposition, “biology determines destiny” was scientific orthodoxy, and prominent scientists such as Louis Agassiz, Samuel Morton, Robert Knox, Herbert Spencer and Ernst Haeckel were busy devising hierarchies of the races in which the “European,” or often more specifically “Anglo-Saxon” (for the English, Germans and Americans), were placed at the top, with the other “inferior” races ranked beneath them. For example, Agassiz, a Harvard professor who was America’s foremost zoologist of the 19th century, claimed that “the brain of the negro is that of the imperfect brain of a seven months infant in the womb of the white.” A whole range of quack sciences such as phrenology and craniometry arose to measure and quantify the differences among individuals as well as races.
Numerous debates about the origin and genesis of humankind raged throughout the 19th century. In the early-mid century, a debate raged between partisans of monogenism and polygenism (i.e., between those who held that all humanity has a common root and those who argued that the different “races” were created separately). The learned associations of the world discussed whether some groups could be classified as human at all, such as the Australian aborigines, who, as late as 1926, were treated as rural pests to be exterminated. By the end of the century, attention had shifted to social-Darwinist theorizing about how the dog-eat-dog ethos of capitalist society (“survival of the fittest”) was beneficial for the species.
The following description of the Hottentots was typical of “science” circa 1862:
“the race called Hottentots [are] a simple, feeble race of men, living in little groups, almost, indeed, in families, tending their fat-tailed sheep and dreaming away their lives. Of a dirty yellow colour, they slightly resemble the Chinese, but are clearly of a different blood. The face is set on like a baboon’s; cranium small but good; jaws very large; feet and hands small; eyes linear in form and of great power; forms generally handsome; hideous when old and never pretty; lazier than an Irishwoman, which is saying much; and of a blood different and totally distinct from all the rest of the world." —Robert Knox. The Races of Man: A Philosophical Enquiry into the Influence of Race over the Destinies of Nations
The layering of prejudice is interesting in the above quotation—an Irishwoman, generally considered "white,” is the standard for laziness against which the Hottentot is measured. While there was a definite ordering of “races” among whites, in general the “fairer races” were destined to conquer and supersede the “darker races”: “Before the go-ahead Dutchmen it was easy to see that this puny, pygmy, miserable race [the Hottentot] must retire….” To Knox and his contemporaries it was axiomatic that race was a determining force in history.
The debates that raged in the scientific community a few generations ago about the hierarchy of “racial superiority” and the destiny of “inferior” races—extinction, extermination, servitude or assimilation—were not the province of a lunatic fringe. They represented the mainstream of scientific thinking. Overtly racist ideas pervaded every aspect of intellectual life: literature, the arts, philosophy and history. Even the most militant sectors of the workers’ movement were polluted.
Racism, like other forms of capitalist ideology, reflects the reality of social oppression and exploitation, but it inverts cause and effect. It is bourgeois not only in its historic origins, but also in its social function—providing a rationale for the misery, suffering and injustice which are an inevitable part of the free-market package. Peoples that were enslaved, conquered or dispossessed, are not victims of an irrational social order, but rather doomed by biological predetermination.
Racism is one of the key means by which the economic and social hierarchies of the capitalist world are ideologically “naturalized.” At the top of the pyramid, because of their fitness to rule, sit white, bourgeois men. The rest of the world—whether female, black, Asian or even the white male working class—are to the ruling class as children to parents. There has always been a close connection between racism and male supremacist ideology. “According to the anthropologist McGrigor Allan in 1869, ‘The type of the female skull approaches in many respects that of the infant, and still more that of the lower races.”’ As an example of the pervasiveness of such attitudes the authors of Not In Our Genes quote Charles Darwin, the greatest scientist of the 19th century, as remarking: “some at least of those mental traits in which women may excel are traits characteristic of the lower races.” Liberals, who dismiss such absurdities as evidence of the scientific backwardness of that age, and comfort themselves with the thought that such vicious ignorance has been transcended, fail to see how, at every stage, science is conditioned by the prejudices of the existing social order.“
In 1781, a British slave ship, the Zong, suffered from overcrowding on a journey
from the coast of Africa to the West Indies. After 7 crew members and 60
slaves died of disease and malnutrition, the inexperienced captain, Luke
Collingwood, ordered 122 slaves thrown overboard. An additional 10 slaves
jumped overboard out of fear, desperation or defiance. When the Zong returned
to England, her owners promptly filed a civil suit for the value of the human
cargo they had lost. At an earlier moment of the Atlantic slave trade, the loss of
more than 100 slaves in a shipment of only 400 might have been disastrous. But
by the close of the eighteenth century, the technology of maritime insurance
ensured that the Zong’s owners could profit from the slaves Collingwood and
his crew bought in Africa regardless of whether or not they survived the
journey and were ultimately sold. And while the Zong massacre galvanized
British abolitionists and stoked antislavery sentiment, it was also a significant
moment in the history of capitalism.
Indeed the Zong massacre represented the potential violence inherent in the
new financial innovations of the eighteenth century. The market for slaves in
the New World radically reoriented English sea trade and produced the need
for finance-based structures of capital, such as credit, insurance, stocks and
bonds (Inikori 2002, p. 318). By the early part of the century, the companies
whose stocks and bonds dominated the market were the East India Company,
the South Sea Company and the Royal African Company. Each of these were
foreign trade companies whose purview was outside Europe, and thus overseas
finance ‘made immense contributions to the size of the market for credit in
London during the early years of the development of credit institutions in
England’ (Inikori 2002, pp. 320–321). During the second half of the eighteenth
century, the financial institutions related to foreign trade – and the slave trade
specifically – would come to not only dominate but also fundamentally shape
the English economy.
Maritime insurance, the crux of the Zong suit, was one of the most direct
connections between the Atlantic slave trade and financial institutions in
European metropoles. But it was not simply an extant technology that slave
traders took advantage of by happy coincidence. The rise of the slave trade itself
was one of the primary motivators leading to a robust insurance industry. The
fact that Collingwood and the owners of the Zong leveraged their insurance
policies in such a base and brutal manner is not surprising or exceptional in any
way; it was not an unfortunate consequence of how maritime slave insurance
functioned. Such insurance allowed slave traders to use violence against
enslaved African bodies as a tool to hedge against infrequent but potentially
disastrous interruptions in the profit of a voyage. The Zong massacre is a
cautionary tale of how moral outrage at instances of overt racial violence can
obscure the more subtle and persistent relationship between race and finance.
Zenia Kish and Justin Leroy, “Bonded life: Technologies of racial finance from slave insurance to philanthrocapital”
Confession: Untill very recently I didn't know latino was a race. I live in the UK, and people who were called "latino" on cartoons (my major understanding of American culture comes from imported media afterall) had Spanish accents, so I assumed "oh they just come from the parts of the Americas where the Spanish colonised" and to me the Spanish are white. It confused me for years cause "Latino isn't Native American, they're not Asian, they're not Black or Arab... I AM SO CONFUSED AT THIS!?"
Hello anon! Actually tbh I feel “latino” as a racial category is quite artificial (i.e trying to categorise genetics, skin colour, lineage etc), and really should be treated as a cultural identity instead. I feel the way in say, the US, people often treat it as a rigid racial category is quite reductionist.
The reason being that Latin Americans are incredibly diverse racially, and what welds them together is their common Hispanic heritage- having been colonised by Spain or Portugal for over 300-400 years. (“Hispanic” comes from “Hispania” which was the name the Romans gave to the Iberian Peninsular) Many modern Mexicans, for example, are mixed-race- being part Spanish and part Native American (the Aztec, Maya, all the other pre-Columbian civilisations, because the conquistadors intermarried with local women.) In addition, many are also of African descent, being descended from slaves brought to the New World by the conquistadors. For example, there are Afro-Brazilians. To add further to it, in Argentina, you have quite a lot of people who are of predominantly European ancestry because Argentina received a lot of relatively recent European immigrants (i.e in from the 19th-20th century), compared to say, Mexico, where the vast majority of people are mixed, descended from the original Mesoamericans and conquistadors.
And, so for example, if we take an Argentine person who is mainly of European descent, in my view they’re still Hispanic rather than “European” because they probably grow up speaking the Latin American Spanish vernacular, immersed in the cultural and geographic context of Latin America, surrounded by other Latin-American countries. So that’s why I feel “Latino” or “Hispanic” really is more of a cultural identity that embraces multiple ethnicities- just as the way people agree now that being “American” is about subscribing to a way of life, and that African-Americans, Asian-Americans etc are all just as “American” as white Americans :)