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Slave Culture

Slave Culture

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Slave Culture

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  1. Slave Culture

  2. Outcomes: • 3.5 explain and describe the development and difficulties of slave culture economically, politically, socially, and spiritually in North America and Caribbean • 3.6 examine how people of African descent used various means to resist enslavement through cultural expression, i.e., music and slave insurrections, religion, folktales and writing

  3. Concepts to think about… • What is culture? • How does every culture express itself? What does every culture have in common? • Why would it be in the best interest of the slave owners to keep their slaves without power?

  4. How could these impact how you live?

  5. The Daily Grind of a Slave • Given enough to eat • Provided shelter • Could get access to better if job was in the main house • Could often be sold without warning • Not uncommon for the master to father children with the slaves who would then become slaves • Crop work long and dangerous including poisonous animals like snakes • Brutal punishments like whipping, withholding of food, locking in cages with no access to food or water, tied to a tree in the sun… • Day started early and ended late • Work decided by a quota – punishments if they were not met

  6. The Daily Grind of a Colonial • Houses made of brick or stone • Small farmers lived mostly hand to mouth with help from neighbours • Plantation owners were rich and lived mostly for recreation • Church meetings like picnics or socials were major events • Clothing depended on your level of society and was often colourful and decorated with flowers or ribbons on Sundays • Long work days but plenty of recreational opportunities for the average person

  7. How could a slave get freedom? • freed by their owners to honor a pledge, to grant a reward, or, before the 1700s, to fulfill a servitude agreement • bought by Quakers, Methodists, and religious activists for the sole purpose of freeing them (a practice soon banned in the southern states) • ran away to free territory • "self-purchase“ • purchasing their own relatives.

  8. Slave culture - YouTube • Who’s interests were served by slavery? • What link do you see in the “lopsided balance of power”? • Give evidence for a link between economic power, social power (power to make social change), and political power with marginalization. • How do you see the mixing of African and Colonial traditions? • What was one form of ultimate power that slave owners had that was alluded to at the end of the clip?

  9. Review the article and complete the questions: Slave Religion

  10. Expression of Culture • Slaves were not permitted to read and write • Teaching a slave to read or write was against the law • Passing down of stories or warnings was through oral tradition, songs and art • From one generation to the next subtle changes

  11. Expressions of culture • Food – Spiced, melons, corn, fished and hunted, usually not given enough • Clothing – Made from what they were given, traded through the plantations among slaves • Religion – mixtures of African and Christianity • Art – Decorated what they could use like pipe bowls, functional art and told stories – quilts hidden in plain view

  12. Slave Music • Different Kinds of Music • Different occasions • Few instruments • Often required few people • Often told a story • 3 main kinds: Work, Worship, Recreation • Cornfield Holler – YouTube (Work Song) • “It makes a long time man feel bad" & "Prison Blues" – YouTube (Work Song) • Do Lord Remember Me Mississippi John Hurt – YouTube (Worship) • Amazing Grace - Wintley Phipps – YouTube (Worship) • Paul Robeson - Shortenin bread :) - YouTube(Recreation) • go to sleep little baby (a cappella ~ harmony) – YouTube (Recreation)

  13. Slave Song Book? • HISTORY DETECTIVES | Slave Songbook | PBS - YouTube • What would make this a very important find? • How important was music in slave culture? • How do we know?

  14. Discussion Groups • In groups of 4 discuss the concept given. Make sure you appoint a recorder to write down at least three points you discussed and at least one more question you would have. • Discussion Topics: • •Discuss the concept of a slave culture that is different from colonial culture • •Consider how the slave culture evolved as a different culture from the colonial settlers • •Discuss why it would be in the best interest of a colonial culture to marginalize slaves and their children • Discuss the combination of African traditions and religions with Christianity • Discuss the link between religious ties and conditions of slavery • •Discuss the unique importance of folklore and oral traditions, including music to a non-literate and repressed group of people