The controversy over the institution of slaveryThe study of slavery and its means has always been a controversy in the society-was it a necessary evil or was it an unimportant mean to boost up white morale? The topic has always been of interest to historians, and the frequency of the event in the earlier centuries proves to be a serious debate among people. Slavery is controversial as people of the past practiced it without remorse, while today one cannot even think about owning someone as theirs. Some might argue that slavery was good for the Southern economy during the 17th century, but the institution itself was more than just the outcomes it brought. Slavery was an evil institution because it was a brutal practice, it reinforced a racial caste system in the South and it was sexually demeaning.
Slavery was a brutal practice because it forced African Americans into hard physical labor, tore their families apart, and failed to provide them with necessities for living. Some argue that masters actually treated their slaves as their own children, that they took care of their slaves, and that they did not let them work long hours in the field. Such was the story of a former slave, Jerry Boyd, whose mother worked as a cook and he himself completed various household chores. When Jerry was cold, his master would take him to sleep in his bed (Rawick 436). Although not all slave owners could be seen as cruel, and many slave owners indeed treated their slaves with civility and respect, the institution of slavery itself, regardless of a master’s treatment, was evil because it degraded African Americans’ humanity even when there was no violence involved. Although not all slaves were beaten, they were all treated as property because thei…
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