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Britain's Forgotten Slave Owners.

Discussion in 'Personal' started by Jude Fawley, Jul 2, 2020.

  1. Jude Fawley

    Jude Fawley Star commenter

    Please check out these programmes on the BBC iPlayer.

    The twisted sickness of the forty-six thousand British slave owners. Their deep illness exposed by name, address and occupation.

    I can't see there is anything that a black lives activist can do to destroy the British slave owner heritage that will ever be as destructive as the actions of those British slave owners.

    I hope we can all work together to do something to put right this British sickness and at least get rid of any public expressions of slave ownership.

    Personally, I want everything that has any connection with this vile and evil trade in human misery destroying. I also want to see the correct reparations made.

    No amount of money taken from the descendants of the British slave owners can ever put this right. Those forty-six thousand slave owners must be exposed and roundly condemned for their evil sickness.

    I hope we will all work towards putting this right. I feel that because it happened here in our country we all have a responsibility to make some kind of amends.

    A good starting point would be to expose the names of the slave owners in a public setting and build a permanent monument to their victims.

  2. Jude Fawley

    Jude Fawley Star commenter

    A publication that might be worth a look at is 'Slavery And The British Country House'.


    We are all scattered across the countries comprising Britain. Once we are out of lockdown we might be able to visit these country houses and demonstrate to highlight their history in relation to the slave trade.

    I think I'll go to a few nearby and disturb a few guided tours to highlight the blood on which they were built and maintained.

    Hopefully others will too.

    I feel that, as educators, we might be best placed to keep this alive and do something positive to highlight the slave owners.

    It would be easy to make this some kind of academic project and dilute the whole issue.

    I would argue that direct non-violent action is required.

    Please watch the programmes. I will warn you that you will be sickened within the first five minutes.

    This is a deep sickness shot through our whole country and still visible today. It must be eradicated.
  3. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    I welcomed your posts upon reading them, and then at the end found myself wishing you had said this whole country instead of our whole country.
    The entire content and premise of what you have posted means it can only have been an oversight, and that you actually understand the difference acutely.
    If you do not, then it is difficult for me to take the 2 posts for what they attempt as being true to what you really believe..
  4. rachel_g41

    rachel_g41 Established commenter

    Seconded - these are excellent. I saw them a few years ago when on a visit back to the UK. They were on very late at night so don't know how widely they'd have been seen. I can't get the iplayer from here but they do exist elsewhere, if you look around.
  5. LondonCanary

    LondonCanary Star commenter

    I found this by Prof Robert George at at Princeton, thought provoking.

    / I sometimes ask students what their position on slavery would have been had they been white and living in the South before abolition. Guess what? They all would have been abolitionists! They all would have bravely spoken out against slavery, and worked tirelessly against it.
    2/ Of course, this is nonsense. Only the tiniest fraction of them, or of any of us, would have spoken up against slavery or lifted a finger to free the slaves. Most of them—and us—would have gone along. Many would have supported the slave system and happily benefited from it.
    3/ So I respond by saying that I will credit their claims if they can show evidence of the following: that in leading their lives today they have stood up for the rights of unpopular victims of injustice whose very humanity is denied, and where they have done so knowing:
    4/ (1) that it would make them unpopular with their peers, (2) that they would be loathed and ridiculed by powerful, influential individuals and institutions in our society; (3) that they would be abandoned by many of their friends, (4) that they would be called nasty names, and
    5/ (5) that they would risk being denied valuable professional opportunities as a result of their moral witness. In short, my challenge is to show where they have at risk to themselves and their futures stood up for a cause that is unpopular in elite sectors of our culture today.
  6. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    I hadn't seen the programme before but watched the first one last night and it gets straight to the point, no waffle. There are plenty of history-based programmes around that should only be half as long as they are, but this isn't one of them. Recommended viewing.

    It references research into Caribbean slave ownership by UCL, details of which can be found here.

    You can search the slave ownership database for family surnames.
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2020
    hplovegame48 likes this.
  7. Spoofer4114

    Spoofer4114 Lead commenter

    Of course it is nonsense most of us would probably have gone along with it, and I include myself in that, because we would have been indoctrinated into the acceptance of the status quo. History doesn't tell us what men used to be it tells us what men are. Under the right conditions I think we all are capable of anything, even dressing up in our Sunday best to watch a black man get lynched as used to happen in the American south..
    Brunel and rachel_g41 like this.
  8. stopwatch

    stopwatch Lead commenter

    I watched these a couple of weeks ago. I knew, basically, that slavery was bad, but this showed exactly how cruel it was as well as showing how widespread slave ownership was. I would suggest you also watch the movie ‘12 years a slave’ which is based on a true story.
    There has already been a thread on reparation, which goes through a lot of the practical and moral issues both for and against this idea.
  9. stopwatch

    stopwatch Lead commenter

  10. stopwatch

    stopwatch Lead commenter

    I watched the 2 part series with David Olusoya 'Britains forgotten slave owners' on iPlayer last week. Fascinating documentary which goes a long way to describing and explaining the history of slavery (or rather Britains part in it).

    When slave owners were recompensed for the loss of their 'property', there were 40,000 people who owned slaves, who claimed money back. At least 50% of these owners lived in all areas of the UK and never ever saw their slaves.

    These varied from the 'big guns' who owned hundreds to somebody who owned just one. A lot of owners were widows who inherited their slaves from their husbands. The income from the slaves was their 'pension'. There was a vicar on the list, an abolitionist and also a slave descendant.

    I suppose that you could go for the descendants (or 'descendant companies') for some kind of contribution, but to find descendants of all 40,000 owners, would be near impossible.

    You are right that racism could be considered as a spin off or legacy of slavery, but I think that is is also part of human nature - people feel threatened by the unknown, or by those whose cultures are different to theirs. If they can subjugate or dominate these people, then they will. This takes away the (perceived) threat.

    It also, always, concerns me that reparation almost always involves money being paid directly. As I said before, the biggest contribution would be a recognition of what happened along with physical reminders in the shape of monuments, memorials and museums.

    Along with that of course are the individual contributions of raising our children/the next generation to be tolerant and compassionate towards all sections of the community, as wellas living that philosophy ourselves as an example.
    Nealswife likes this.
  11. circuskevin

    circuskevin Established commenter

    Hello @LondonCanary ,

    You no doubt know already I have stood up for a minority of special needs pupils. "Teachers are dimwits", I proclaimed in the House of Commons!

    I have explained this often enough on this forum so shall not bore you any more ... :)

    Nealswife likes this.
  12. alex_teccy

    alex_teccy Star commenter

    Will we providing names of the African kingdoms and rulers who did the actual hard work of captivating individuals for slavery? You know, for historical accuracy.
    artboyusa likes this.
  13. Nealswife

    Nealswife Occasional commenter

    I am new here - please post a link as stated about SEND pupils here.

    And I have stood up for BAME pupils and parents - and been suspended for my sins...but I fight on as some managers in education, are wrong about the the different treatments and language they use, to imply that some are not worthy! In this day and age, I was unhappy about this and it got me fired! It's not easy to stand up and fight against stupidity - not all educators are fair - nor do they care about the future, let alone the past.

    Hopefully, the next generations will see things differently.
    hplovegame48 likes this.
  14. Skeoch

    Skeoch Star commenter

    I can see where the OP is coming from on reparations but there's so much to unscramble that I can't see any way through. If we consider the transatlantic trade, the people who profited include the West African peoples who captured slaves, the people who ran the slave caravans, the African traders on the coast. Then the shipowners, the officers and crew; the shipbuilders, carpenters, sailmakers, gunsmiths, iron founders who made the ships; the chandlers and victuallers. Then the tradesmen making the goods to sell in Africa; further back the primary industries of iron, coal, forestry, agriculture. Then the cotton and sugar trades and their dependent industries in Britain. Now also consider other slave trades: Brazil, Arab, Madagascar, the white slave trade to North Africa.
    And while some people became rich, it's likely that many, many more, like the ships' crews or the guards for the caravans were low paid, needing any job they could get regardless of ethics, and have left far more descendants all round the world. Getting reparations from them? As to the people who became rich: it's not common for wealth to remain for many generations, so their descendants may not be rich now.
    Dunteachin likes this.
  15. hplovegame48

    hplovegame48 Occasional commenter

    I found both episodes shocking and enthralling. So worth watching. The map is accessible to look at and I discovered a local country house, now an agricultural college, was owned by a slaver.
    I always enjoy the programmes David Olusoga does.
    Lidnod likes this.
  16. modelmaker

    modelmaker Lead commenter

    I watched the series when it was first broadcast in 2015. I agree it was fascinating, essential viewing too for anyone who cares to understand how the slave trade worked.

    No just one. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/20...land-bank-england-apologise-historic-slavery/
    The church even had its own plantation.

    To understand this shameful part of British history, it needs to be viewed through the lens of world history though. Slavery existed since the dawn of time. Britain's involvement in it was just a snapshot of what had been a way of life for millenia. We might reflect on what the meaning of the lyrics in Rule Britania meant at the time it was written.

    "Rule, Britannia! Britannia, rule the waves!
    Britons never, never, never shall be slaves."
    hplovegame48 likes this.
  17. catbefriender

    catbefriender Lead commenter

    The brilliant Professor Louis Gates Jnr has written a lot on this and the Ghanaian connection and did a BBC programme on the same about 15-20 years ago. It upset a lot of Ghanaian though because they felt it targeted them, when it was just an example of one region. The programme shown the ancestors of the Ghanaian kings crying their eyes out for what they did and stating they wished their ancestors didn't do it.

    The famous novel, 'Uncle Tom's Cabin' mentioned this too. So it is very well known.

    There was differences between African and European slavery such as in Africa:
    a. a slave could be freed if they worked hard enough or had talent and
    b. a child born of a freeman was not a slave.

    Africans didn't fully understand what would happen. They thought the Western slavery model was the same as theirs. Still doesn't justify what they did, but explains why they thought they were just doing their usual business, but with Europeans as opposed to another African tribe. There was a famous Ghanaian king whose sons, both educated in England, went down into the slave ships to count the slaves and was locked in there with him. The father travelled all over the world to find his two sons, but never did.

    There was also a very rich Ghanaian woman who lived in New York. There were several high profile Africans livings in the West, having made huge profits out of slavery.
    magic surf bus likes this.
  18. DrLinus

    DrLinus Lead commenter

    The more people tell me how I am supposed to be affected by any particular subject the more inclined I am to wonder about their motivations and how they stand to gain if I accede to their demands.

    [This comment/section has been removed for breaching our Community Guidelines/Terms and conditions]
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 4, 2020
    artboyusa likes this.
  19. alex_teccy

    alex_teccy Star commenter

    Thanks for the detailed response.
    Do you think the Arabs who continued slavery right up 1962 had a different understanding of it? Will Saudi Arabi be handing out cash for its role?
  20. catbefriender

    catbefriender Lead commenter

    Slavery is still going on to this day. I think Jude's post is a very interesting one and another example of the George Floyd effect. I will definitely be checking out the programmes he mentioned, and if there are any from the Arabs' perspective, I would like to see them too.

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