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Ellie Kraus

on 8 April 2013

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Slave Control Although whipping was common when it came to slave control, more often than not it was neglect that caused pain among slaves. Whipping was only necessary if slaves were to in some way do something out of line, which was not likely in such terrible and exhausting conditions. Some of the most harm done to slaves was the neglect of their masters. Slaves did not receive any medical attention and usually were not even given places to sleep. Exposure to the environment of heat, fumes etc. was one of the main sources of death among slaves, especially children. Diseases such as malaria were rampant and also killed slaves very easily.

www.pbs.org Slave Control Many slave owners would whip their slaves when they misbehaved. It was very common for whipping to occur and slaves became used to the idea that they would be whipped when they disobeyed orders or did anything wrong. An excerpt from Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglas, an American Slave depicts this. "I have often been awakened at the dawn of the day by the most heart-rendering shrieks of an own aunt of mine whom he [the slave holder] used to tie up to a joist, and whip upon her naked back till she was literally covered with blood." Whipping was the most highly used control over slaves.
Douglas, p. 51 Slave Resistance There were cases in which slaves used song to resist the ever present torture that was their enslavement. As Frederick Douglas puts it, "The songs of a slave represent the sorrows of his heart; and he is relieved by them, only as an aching heart is relieved by its tears."
Douglas, 58 Slave Resistance Slaves also escaped, when the circumstances were not too dangerous; "Thousands of slaves ran away. Some left the plantation for days or weeks at a time and lived in hiding. Others formed maroon communities in mountains, forests or swamps. Many escaped to the North. There were also numerous instances of slave revolts throughout the history of the institution." However, this method of resistance often was very dangerous. Slaves could be shot while trying to escape, they could be caught and immediately put to death. This option was extremely risky.
www.pbs.org Slave Resistance Some slaves would feign illness so that they could escape having to work for a particularly harsh master. as a result, they would be sold to another slaveholder. In still other circumstances, slaves would tell their master that cattle had died or that pigs had caught a rare disease so that their master would not want to eat it, leaving it for them. This was called malitis, and all it was was a tap on the head to an animal so that they appeared to be ill.
www.pbs.org herb.ashp.cuny.edu Ellie Kraus Slave Control and
Slave Resistance How did slave masters control their slaves? How did slaves resist their masters? www.stueysplace.ca youtube.com faculty.umf.maine.edu uppitynegronetwork.com Works Cited Questions: PBS. PBS, n.d. Web. 08 Apr. 2013. "HERB: Resources for Teachers | A Former Slave Recalls an Outbreak of "Malitis"" Omeka RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Apr. 2013. Douglas, Frederick. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglas, an American Slave. Boston: Anti-Slavery Office, 1845.
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