“The subject of children and slavery has only recently become a special focus of scholars…. The focus on children as such is, therefore, a significant breakthrough in understanding slavery as a system in different institutionalized contexts.”
Journal of African History
Child Slaves in the Modern World is the second of two volumes that examine the distinctive uses and experiences of children in slavery in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. This collection of previously unpublished essays exposes the global victimization of child slaves from the period of abolition of legal slavery in the nineteenth century to the human rights era of the twentieth century. It contributes to the growing recognition
that the stereotypical bonded male slave was in fact a rarity.
Nine of the studies are historical, with five located in Africa and three covering Latin America from the British Caribbean to Chile. One study follows the children liberated in the famous Amistad incident (1843). The remaining essays cover contemporary forms of child slavery, from prostitution to labor to forced soldiering.
Child Slaves in the Modern World adds historical depth to the current literature on contemporary slavery, emphasizing the distinctive vulnerabilities of children, or effective equivalents, that made them particularly valuable to those who could acquire and control them. The studies also make clear the complexities of attempting to legislate or decree regulations limiting practices that appear to have been—and continue to be —ubiquitous around the world.
Contributors: Benjamin N. Lawrance, Gwyn Campbell, Cecily Jones, Sue Taylor, Nara Milanich, Martin Klein, Bernard Moitt, Trevor R. Getz, William G. Clarence-Smith, Jonathan Blagbrough, Philip Whalen, Malika Id’ Salah, Zosa de Sas Kropiwnicki, Sarah Maguire, and Mike Dottridge.
Gwyn Campbell, Canada Research Chair in Indian Ocean World History at McGill University, is the author and editor of many works, including Abolition and Its Aftermath in Indian Ocean Africa and Asia and An Economic History of Imperial Madagascar. More info →
Suzanne Miers is professor emerita of history at Ohio University. She is the author of Slavery in the Twentieth Century and coeditor of The End of Slavery and other books. More info →
Joseph C. Miller is the T. Cary Johnson, Jr. Professor of history at the University of Virginia. He is the author of Kings and Kinsmen, Way of Death, and works on the world history of slavery. More info →
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Sugar Girls and Seamen illuminates the shadowy world of dockside prostitution in South Africa, focusing on the women of Cape Town and Durban who sell their hospitality to foreign sailors. Dockside “sugar girls” work at one of the busiest cultural intersections in the world. Through their continual interactions with foreign seamen, they become major traffickers in culture, ideas, languages, styles, goods, currencies, genes, and diseases.
Women and children have been bartered, pawned, bought, and sold within and beyond Africa for longer than records have existed. This important collection examines the ways trafficking in women and children has changed from the aftermath of the “end of slavery” in Africa from the late nineteenth century to the present. The formal abolition of the slave trade and slavery did not end the demand for servile women and children.