In this paper I am mainly going to talk about the challenges that were faced by the Latin Americans families as a result of slave trade which in this case I will focus on the ways the slave's families in Brazil faced in the 19th century. The word Latin America is used by many as a result of the cultural practices of its inhibitors, which in this case is different from the cultural practices of the Northern Americans therefore the Latin Americans have a cultural affiliation with the Romans culture that can be traced back from the year 1830s, this cultural difference is said to be the determinant differentiating the Latin and Northern Americans (Skidmore et al, pg 3). In the early 19th century the United States of America had claimed that all the southern parts of America are said to be Latin America, thus Latin American countries are mostly found in the southern parts of America and it includes countries that are mostly speaking Portuguese, Spanish and Italian.
Origin of slavery
The origin of slavery in America can be traced back to the year 1492 this is when the Spaniards led by Christopher Columbus landed in America as a result of Spreading Christianity, Mining for Gold and Diamond, Expansion of There Territories and Search for Raw Materials for There Industries amongst other reasons. According to (Skidmore Et al, pg 3).from the contact with the American fertile land that resulted to the Europeans (Spaniards) having changing there minds and intention of conquering America.
The mixed interests from the European countries resulted to the scramble and partition of America, which resulted to the European countries like Britain, France, Spain, Italy, Belgium amongst other European countries have in territories in America, its notable that the Portuguese conquered Brazil building its empire there, and as a result of this they developed the big chunks of land for the purpose of sugarcane cultivation as a way of raising some economic a other economical activities such as Mining and other economic activities were not available I Brazil at the moment.
The Latin American slave history
The history of slave trade in the Latin America can be traced from way back in the 15th century; this was immediately after the conquest of the Europeans in America, there invasion in America was the causal reason for slave trade in America as a way of soliciting cheap labour from other nations (Africa) in order to replace the Latin Americans who were dying from diseases and also killed by the Europeans as a way of forcing them to participate in the European farms.
The Latin American countries were all colonized by the European countries and each country had taken all the productive natural resources for Latin Americans and they were all living as squatters in there countries as most of them were pushed to arid and semi arid areas and as a result of these the natives of Latin American were denied the opportunity to perform there daily duties thus subjected to harsh treatment and forced labour.
A greater potion of The Latin America countries got there independence around or before 1825 and from the cause of there independence was as a result of the United States of America and French revolutions that rendered these countries to become liberally free (Boehm, pg 40). These political reforms and changes in the France and United States of America were the most effective causes / driving stones that pushed for the independence of these Latin American countries which were slowly managed and the country, and in the process of managing the country the merchants or reach settlers in these countries took advantage of the laws that allowed them to own and use slaves this was not only in the United States of America but was also experienced in the Latin American counties.
The influence of slavery in Brazil families and social life in the 19th century
In the paper I am going to highlight the plight of the Brazilian slaves in there family and social life in the 19th century, in this period most of the Latin American countries had gotten there independence Brazil included. Brazil being colonized by the Portuguese had slaves, who served the rich and elite in Brazil after its independence, and it's from theses slaves experience that will form the basis of the paper as the Brazil natives were subjected to slavery and we are going to highlight on the ways that slavery affected there social and family life of these slaves in Brazil.
There are different ways that determined the likelihood of an individual being a branded a slave in the society one of the classification is the phenotype (Levine et al, pg 314). This is where the outward physical appearance of an individual was used to determine an individual other features also included the Hair, Nose, Lips Shape and Skin Color, another way was Genetics this is where a mans ancestry determined an individual thus an individual will be said to be inferior and every descendant from his linage will be considered to be inferior and lastly is the sociocultural status where one's checks at the formal education, religion, wealth, custom, dress and manners are considered when determining an individuals status in the society thus classifying an individual into the specific class that the society views is the best for the individual.
It should be noted that Brazil was one of the greatest, productive and important country in Latin America that was conquered by the Europeans this is because it provided them with a variety of raw material and products, it should be noted that slavery has played a very important role in shaping the present ethical and structuring outfit of what is being seen now in Brazil (Net Industries, par 4). Slavery is seen to be the mainstream in the country for over six decades after the country's 1822 independence and it should be noted that these slaves played a very important economic role in the country's economy as the helped in the fields of mining and sugarcane production.
Brazil also obtain a large percentage of all the enslaved Africans who were traded in the trans-Atlantic slave trade with the estimated 35.5 % (3 million) Africans being sent to Brazil just to work on the sugarcane plantation and mining industry.
Brazil had to import slaves into the country because the indigenous people was worsening as they never loved the Portuguese and the Portuguese got found it very difficult for them to acquire cheap labour from them this pushing them to resort to other avenues (The New York Times book review, pg 47). Another reason is the permition accorded to the Brazilian landowners the opportunity to own slaves this made it easy for the rich to own there own slaves thus acting to the benefit of the Brazilian people.
Families in Brazil were divided into classes, In that there was a division of classes between the respective families, this grouping made it difficult for these families to interact with each other, the reason being that all the individuals in the society knowing there respective grouping(Net Industries, par 4). Thus the middle class only married the people from there class and the upper-class married the upper class and while the lower class did the same thus making it difficult for these families to be together or even associate with the others and in the process creating a differentiating mark / classes between the families (Hwang et al, pg 35).
In the 19th century slavery also resulted to a changed social arrangement and behaviors, in that there was the formation and organization of consensual unions, thus in other words in some slave families men tended to escape from there parental (Patriarchal) roles, this negligence of me to perform there duties resulted to women assume there husbands roles (Boehm, pg 40). Thus resulting to the women becoming the heads of the houses and at the same time the key providers of there families this resulting to a changed cultural practice as most men weren't willing to take good care of there families as a result of slavery.
Slavery also resulted to the breakage of families; this is especially as a result of the strict commands that were set by the slave owners that bared a slave family for staying together as a family, this was a way that will be used by the slave owners to discourage the cohesion that might exist between these African families so the slaves wouldn't be able to be as a family that would help foster good relationship between the members of the family that they belong to thus slavery disintegrates a family (Freyre, par 4). It is also noted that some teenage parents left there parents houses and they illegally get married to there mates and in the process they have children with there spouses without the knowledge of the slave owners.
The female slaves were also raped by there owners and they wouldn't be in any point say to anyone including the village officials of the person who raped them (Scott, pg 29). According (Levine Et al, pg 314) a form of seeing the slaves as inferior people who had no rights and absolute reasons for airing there sentiments and problems, this eventually resulted to the (raped) slave women being submissive and traumatized to of the owners and this in the process to mixed breading where children were born from parents from different races.
Slavery also made / gave the men more authority that they women in that the men were responsible in conduction major roles such as mining, farming and other hardcore jobs, thus left the women with no other role in the family but only staking care of the children and feeding the family (Freyre, par 4). This evidently made the women more and more submissive, they were only supposed to make some of the solutions in the absence of there husbands and this ultimately resulted to the women being seen as useless in the slaves social life.