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Modern Slavery, Essay Example

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Slavery is an age-old practice that rendered some people deprived of their fundamental human rights. The people enslaved were subjected to some form of control by other human beings. This act dispossessed them of their ability to choose what they wanted, where to live, whom to be with, and other life privileges that a free human being can get or must have in life.

The article confirms that slavery still exists in modern days as well. The only difference between this and the former type of slavery is in the manner it is done. Modern slavery is manifested in such forms as human trafficking, being locked up in brothels and subjected to poor and inhumane working conditions in restaurants and many others. This shows that the modern forms of slavery are related to work. When an employer subjects an employee to some hard labor conditions without good pay, then this can be seen as a form of slavery. The fact that someone is not happy about a position he or she is in but is forced to live in it, then this can be seen as a form of slavery. The slavery types identified in the article are labor slavery, sex slavery, and child slavery.

As presented in the article, the major causes of modern slavery are related to the pursuit of money. Virtually all activities that are seen to put people in a way of slavery, such as human trafficking and forced labor in brothels and restaurants, are all geared towards making monetary gains. These causes are also contributed by the lack of government surveillance to prohibit the bad practice in the society. Whereas slavery is specific to poor countries, Brazil, Haiti, India, Nepal, Congo, and Ghana have been identified as the major countries where labor slavery is rife.

The problem of slavery can be addressed by adopting two top-most strategies. First, the governments must adopt safety measures aimed at protecting their citizens from the vice. There should also be consultative programs among all governments to curb it because human trafficking is an inter-country problem. The strategy relates to the issuance of information relating to the forms of slavery and the ways of evading them. This will be helpful to the victims who end up being trapped in it without knowing.

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271 Slavery Topics and Essay Examples

✨ tips for an essay, research paper or speech about slavery, 🏆 best slavery titles for essay, 🥇 most interesting slave trade essay topics, ⭐ good titles for slavery essays, 💡 slavery writing prompts, 🔎 simple & easy slavery titles, ✍️ slavery essay topics for college, ❓ research questions about slavery.

Writing an essay on slavery may be challenging as the topic brings up negative emotions to many people.

This issue is related to differences between social positions and their negative effects. In addition, slavery reveals racial disparities in society and damages race relations in many cultures.

Good slavery essays discuss the aspects and problems that are important and relevant today. Choose slavery essay topics that raise significant problems that remain acute in modern society. Slavery essay titles and topics may include:

  • The problem of human trafficking in today’s world
  • Why is it hard to stop child trafficking in today’s world?
  • The aspects of plantation life for slaves
  • The development of American slavery
  • Was slavery inevitable?
  • Differences and similarities between slavery in the US and serfdom in Russia
  • The ineffectiveness of peaceful means against slavery
  • Destructive aspects of slavery
  • The link between slavery and racism
  • The differences between the impact of slavery on women and men of color

Once you select the issue you want to discuss, you can start working on your paper. Here are some tips and secrets for creating a powerful essay:

  • Remember that appropriate essay titles are important to get the readers’ interest. Do not make the title too long but state the main point of your essay.
  • Start with developing a structure for your essay. Remember that your paper should be organized clearly. You may want to make separate paragraphs or sections for the most important topics.
  • Include an introductory paragraph, in which you can briefly discuss the problem and outline what information the paper will present.
  • Remember to include a concluding paragraph too, in which you will state the main points of your work. Add recommendations, if necessary.
  • Do preliminary research even if you feel that you know much about the topic already. You can find useful information in historical books, peer-reviewed journals, and trusted online sources. Note: Ask your professor about the types of sources you are allowed to use.
  • Do not rely on outside sources solely. Your essay should incorporate your knowledge and reflections on slavery and existing evidence. Try to add comments to the citations you use.
  • Remember that a truly powerful essay should be engaging and easy-to-understand. You can tell your readers about different examples of slavery to make sure that they understand what the issue is about. Keep the readers interested by asking them questions and allowing them to reflect on the problem.
  • Your slavery essay prompts should be clearly stated in the paper. Do not make the audience guess what the main point of the essay is.
  • Although the content is important, you should also make sure that you use correct grammar and sentence structures. Grammatical mistakes may make your paper look unprofessional or unreliable.
  • If you are writing an argumentative essay, do not forget to include refutation and discuss opposing views on the issue.
  • Check out slavery essay examples online to see how you can structure your paper and organize the information. In addition, this step can help you to avoid possible mistakes and analyze the relevance of the issue you want to discuss.

Do not forget to check our free samples and get the best ideas for your essay!

  • Slavery in To Kill a Mockingbird Novel The introduction of Tom by the author is a plot device to represent the plight of the slaves in the state.
  • Sethe’s Slavery in “Beloved” by Toni Morrison In spite of the fact that the events depicted in Beloved take place after the end of the American Civil War, Sethe, as the main character of the novel and a former slave, continues to […]
  • Analysis of Themes of Slavery in Literature The paper will be concentrated on the analysis of the works ‘The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano’ by Olaudah Equiano, ‘Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass’ by Frederick Douglass, and ‘Incidents […]
  • Slavery in the Roman Empire The elite were the rich people, and majority of the population that comprised of the common farmers, artisans, and merchants known as the plebeians occupied the low status.
  • How “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” Addresses Slavery The insensitivity in this mistreatment and dehumanization of Black people is pervasive to the extent that Jim considers himself “property” and was proud to be worth a fortune if anyone was to sell him. To […]
  • Chapters 4-6 of ”From Slavery to Freedom” by Franklin & Higginbotham At the same time, the portion of American-born slaves was on the increase and contributed to the multiracial nature of the population.
  • Economic Impact of Slavery Growth in Southern Colonies 1 The need to occupy southern colonies came as a result of the successes that were recorded in the north, especially after the establishment of cash crop farming. The setting up of the plantations in […]
  • “American Slavery, 1619-1817” by Peter Kolchin The concluding chapter details of the demise of slavery on the onset of the Civil War and Reconstruction. The period of American Revolution was a “watershed “in transforming the vision that portrayed slavery was justifiable […]
  • John Brown and His Beliefs About Slavery John Brown was a martyr, his last effort to end slavery when he raided Harper’s Ferry helped to shape the nation and change the history of slavery in America.
  • Du Bois’ “The Soul of Black Folk” and T. Washington’s “Up From Slavery” Du Bois in the work “The Soul of Black Folk” asks the question, why black people are considered to be different, why they are treated differently as they are the same members of the society, […]
  • Impact of Revolution on Slavery and Women Freed slaves and other opponents of the slave trade in the north agitated for release and freedom of slaves in the south.
  • Globalization and Slavery: Multidisciplinary View Globalization is an exciting concept and maybe one of the greatest achievements of the modern world. A case of the multidisciplinary nature of slavery is also evident in Pakistan, where slavery thrives on religious grounds.
  • “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” and Slavery It is said that “the book is a very inadequate representation of slavery; and it is so, necessarily, for this reason, – that slavery, in some of its workings, is too dreadful for the purposes […]
  • Betty Wood: The Origins of American Slavery Economic analyses and participation of the slave labor force in economic development are used to analyze the impact and role of slave labor in the development of the American economy.
  • Slavery and Identity: “The Known World” by Edward Jones Moses is used to this kind of life and described by one of the other characters as “world-stupid,” meaning he does not know how to live in the outside world. He has a strong connection […]
  • “Slavery and the British Empire: From Africa to America” by Morgan Kenneth Slavery has for a very long time attracted the attention of many history scholars.”Morgan Kenneth, in his book Slavery and the British Empire gives a deep in site of how the British came to embrace […]
  • Metaphoric Theme of Slavery in “Indiana” by George Sand In her novel about love and marriage, Sand raises a variety of central themes of that time society, including the line of slavery both from the protagonist’s perspective and the French colonial slavery.
  • Freedom in Antebellum America: Civil War and Abolishment of Slavery The American Civil War, which led to the abolishment of slavery, was one of the most important events in the history of the United States.
  • The Theme of Slavery in Aristotle’s “Politics” He notes that the fundamental part of an association is the household that is comprised of three different kinds of relationships: master to slave, husband to wife, and parents to their children.
  • Gender Politics: Military Sexual Slavery In this essay, it will be shown that military power and sexual slavery are interconnected, how the human rights of women are violated by the military, and how gender is related to a war crime.
  • Impacts of Slavery and Slave Trade in Africa Slavery existed in the African continent in form of indentured servitude in the previous years, but Atlantic slave trade changed the system, as people were captured by force through raids before being sold to other […]
  • Cultural Consequences of the US Slavery: 1620-1870 3 In the same way that the African had adopted the new language and devised their own language, the Whites began to be influenced by their style of talking and their speech began to be […]
  • The American Anti-Slavery Society The goal of the society has not changed since then, and we strive for the complete abolition of slavery in this country of blessed.
  • The “Slavery by Another Name” Documentary The documentary highlights how the laws and policies of that time enabled the exploitation of Black people and how the legacy of slavery continued to shape the racial dynamics of the country.
  • Human Trafficking: Slavery Issues These are the words to describe the experiences of victims of human trafficking. One of the best places to intercept human trafficking into the US is at the border.
  • The Slavery Experience: Erra Adams Erra Adams indicates that he was the oldest of the children and his task was to plow the land. The formerly enslaved person noted that the death of the master was a real grief for […]
  • Abraham Lincoln: The End of Slavery Lincoln actively challenged the expansion of slavery because he believed the United States would stay true to the Declaration of Independence. It is worth considering the fact that Lincoln was not the only advocate for […]
  • Recreation of Slavery in “Sweat” Book by Hurston Perhaps the best-portrayed theme and the most controversial one is the recreation of slavery on the part of Afro-Americans who have just been freed of it.
  • California’s Issues With Slavery However, the report and the book indicate this point and emphasize that the concept of free land was made in favor of white people but not in the interests of African Americans.
  • Sexual Slavery and Human Smuggling They were the only people in the house, and it appeared that her parents were not home. The social worker’s job in Tiffani’s life is to look into her past, from her childhood through her […]
  • Were the Black Codes Another Form of Slavery? Slavery in the United States has been a part of the nation’s history for hundreds of years, and yet it did not end abruptly.
  • How Slavery Makes Sense From Various Perspectives Given that there is a historical precedent for the “peculiar institution,” it would be erroneous to dismiss slavery as something that is new. Thus, the institution of slavery is found even in the Bible, and […]
  • Slavery in The Fires of Jubilee by Stephen Oates Apart from the story being arranged in chapters, the layout and approach suggest that the author has described the area of events narrated and then given the narration.
  • Modern Slavery in Global Value Chains: Case Study The main reason for accusations of forced labor is that most of the factories Nike owns are in Vietnam, and they provide the lowest possible wages.
  • Differences of Slavery: Oklahoma Writers’ Project vs. The Textbook Today, many sources discuss the characteristics of slavery, its causes, and the outcomes and describe the conditions under which the Civil War began. In the accounts and the textbook, different opportunities for slaves are given […]
  • Autobiography & Slavery Life of Frederick Douglass This essay discusses the slavery life of Frederick Douglass as written in his autobiography, and it highlights how he resisted slavery, the nature of his rebellion, and the view he together with Brinkley had about […]
  • The American Civil War: Pro- & Anti-Slavery Forces The pro-slavery forces argued that slavery was the right thing to do, promoting abolitionists and the anti-slavery forces as terrible villains because they wanted to abolish slavery.
  • Slavery: Historical Background and Modern Perspective Despite the seemingly short period of contract slavery, people did not have the right to marry without the owner’s permission while the contract term was in effect.
  • Irish Immigrants and Abolition of Slavery in the US The selected historical events are Irish immigration to the United States in the 1840s and 1850s and the movement for slavery abolition, which existed in the country at the same time.
  • Irish Immigration to America and the Slavery Despite the fact that the Irish encountered a great number of obstacles, the immigration of Irish people to the United States was advantageous not only to the immigrants but also to the United States.
  • Irish Immigrants and the Abolition of Slavery Irish people, though not as deprived of rights as the enslaved Africans, also endured much suffering and fought slavery to the best of their ability.
  • North of Slavery: The Negro in the Free States: 1790 – 1860 The book North of Slavery: The Negro in the Free States: 1790 1860 by Leon Litwack is an illustration of how African Americans were treated in the northern states just before the start of The […]
  • Modern Slavery and Its Emergence The author turns to the examples of three European countries and, through the analysis, reveals the piece of the effects of the slave trade and the modernization of its forms.
  • Moral Aspect of Slavery from a Northern and Southern Perspective Pro-slavery, non-expansionist, and abolitionist perspectives on the moral foundations of slavery identify both differences between the North and south of the US and the gradual evolution of the nation’s view of African people.
  • Thomas Jefferson on Slavery and Declaration of Independence Additionally, with the Declaration of Independence, Jefferson set the foundation for the abolition of slavery in the future. Thus, the claim that Jefferson’s participation in slavery invalidates his writing of the Declaration of Independence is […]
  • Europeans’ Interest in Sugar and Slavery Hence, in the Atlantic world, it was also a significant factor, contributing not only to the well-being of the affected populations in Europe but also to the growth of slavery in the region.
  • Self-Reflection on John Adams: Slavery and Race This could demonstrate the advantages and disadvantages of the freedom of speech limitations that are considered in modern America. Therefore, I would like to know the perspectives of different political parties on the events of […]
  • Slavery and Indentured Servitude Slavery practices were perceived to extend in Boston, which is believed to be the first place where someone tried to force enslaved people to have children to earn money. To summarize, the practice of slavery […]
  • Indentured Servitude and Slavery The slave population in the North progressively fell throughout the 1760s and 1770s with slaves in Philadelphia reducing to approximately 700 in 1775.
  • Critical Response: The Origin of Negro Slavery Considering that individuals of all races were involved in slavery in the New World, racism emerged as a consequence of forced labor and was not originally connected to the targeted discrimination of African Americans.
  • Chesapeake Colonies and Development of Slavery The given trend was similar to the Middle and Chesapeake colonies, proving specific attitudes to slavery peculiar to people of that period.
  • American Slavery Arise and Abolition In this regard, the new slaves were not truly emancipated, as they were still dependent on a source of resources for subsistence.
  • Analysis of Slavery in United States The main points highlighted in the lecture are focused on the socio-economic differences between the two systems, the actual life of slaves, and methods of blacks’ rebellion.
  • Review of Slavery Topic in “Never Caught” Thus, the former’s relationship to this institution was guided by humanity towards the slaves and the development of legal methods of improving their lives that did not exist in the latter case.
  • Prohibiting Slavery in the United States In other words, the original ideas incorporated the considerations of sexual immorality due to the abuse of the affected persons and the practice of breeding people for sale. The contributions to the discussion were also […]
  • Slavery Experience by Abdul Rahman ibn Ibrahim Sori Abdul Rahman continued talking about his family and status, but his royal priorities were not enough to confirm his identity and return to his family.
  • Discussion of Slavery in Focus For this reason, the audience that reads about cases of slavery in some of the third-world countries has the feeling of encountering the past something that, in readers’ understanding, is already a history.
  • New Slavery in “Disposable People” by Kevin Bales The immense increase of the population after World War II and the influence of development and globalization of the world’s economy on traditional families in developing countries have led to the increment in the gap […]
  • Analysis of Documents on Greek Slavery The passages will be examined and evaluated better understand the social and cultural history of the period and learn more about the social order in Ancient Greece. It can be asserted that the issue of […]
  • Discussion of Justification of Slavery As a result, such perceptions gave rise to the argument that the latter people are inferior to Europeans and, thus, should be in a position of servitude.
  • The Industrial Revolution, Slavery, and Free Labor The purpose of this paper is to describe the Industrial Revolution and the new forms of economic activity it created, including mass production and mass consumption, as well as discuss its connection to slavery.
  • Expansion of Freedom and Slavery in British America The settlement in the city of New Plymouth was founded by the second, and it laid the foundation for the colonies of New England.
  • Should the U.S. Government Pay Reparations for Slavery Coates tries to get the attention of his audience by explaining to them the importance of understanding the benefits of the impact the slaves faced during the regime of white supremacy.
  • Antebellum Slavery’s Role in Shaping the History and Legacy of American Society The novel tells the story of two different times, the 1970s and 1815s, and shows other conditions of the heroes’ existence due to gender and racial characteristics.
  • View on the Slavery in the State of Mississippi According to Mississippi’s “Declaration of Causes,” slavery is “the greatest material interest of the world” and “these products are peculiar to the climate verging on the tropical regions”.
  • Alexander Stephens on Slavery and Confederate Constitution The speaker remarks that the persistent lack of consensus over the subordination and slavery of the “Negro” between the South and North was the immediate reason why the Confederates decided to secede and establish their […]
  • Origins of Modern Racism and Ancient Slavery The diversity of African kingdoms and the empires were engaged in the slave trade for hundreds of years prior to the beginnings of the Atlantic slave trade. The working and living condition of slaves were […]
  • Isaac Burt: Modern-Day Slavery in the US Therefore, the author begins with the critical review of data on the notion of human trafficking, including sex and labor trafficking forms, which often use immigrants and women as vulnerable populations.
  • How Violent Was the Slavery? Ask African American Women The book significantly impacted American literature due to the writer’s roots and the problems of slavery addressed in a detailed manner.
  • The Role of Slavery for the American Society: Lesson Plan Understand how the development of slavery could influence the social and economic life of the Southern states and the role of the plantation system in the process.
  • Colonialism and the End of Internal Slavery The Atlantic slave trade was considered among the main pillars of the economy in the western region between the 16th and 19th centuries.
  • The History of American Revolution and Slavery At the same time, the elites became wary of indentured servants’ claim to the land. The American colonies were dissatisfied with the Royal Proclamation of 1763 it limited their ability to invade new territories and […]
  • The Expansion of Slavery: Review Their purpose was to track and catch runaway slaves and return them to their masters. The work of slaves was primarily agricultural.
  • Abolitionist Movement: Attitudes to Slavery Reflected in the Media One of the reasons confirming the inadmissibility of slavery and the unfairness of the attitude towards this phenomenon is the unjustification of torture and violence.
  • Slavery and Social Death by Orlando Patterson As a result, relatively same practices of social death were applied to indigenous American people, which proves Patterson’s point of view that this attitude was characteristic not only for the African slave trade.
  • Antebellum Culture and Slavery: A Period of History in the South of the United States The antebellum era, also known as the antebellum south, is a period of history in the south of the United States before the American Civil War in the late 18th century.
  • Slavery and Society Destruction Seduced by the possibility of quick enrichment, the users of slave labor of both the past and the present, betrayed their humanity due to power and money.
  • Trans-Atlantic Chattel Slavery and the Rise of the Modern Capitalist World System The reading provides an extensive background of the historical rise and fall of the African nations. The reading gives a detailed account of the Civil War and the color line within its context.
  • Modern Slavery: Definition and Types Modern slavery is a predatory practice that is being utilized by businesses and organizations, some seemingly legitimate, worldwide through the exploitative and forced labour of victims and needs to be addressed at the policy and […]
  • Human Trafficking as a Global Crime Industry: Labor, Slavery, Sexual Slavery, Prostitution, and Organ Harvesting As members of the society, every individual has to be aware of this glaring issue, and do their part in preventing human trafficking. This project will present an in-depth analysis of various aspects and perspectives […]
  • Slavery in “Disposable People” Book by Kevin Bales The key point of his book is that the phenomenon of slavery is impossible to be eradicated. He has studied the current economic and political situations of the countries presented in his book that help […]
  • Late Slavery and Emancipation in the Greater Caribbean The epoch of slavery defined the darkest history in the evolution of the civilization of humanity; the results of slavery continue permeating the psychology of very “far” descendants of the slaves themselves.
  • Transatlantic Slave Trade and Colonial Chesapeake Slavery Most of the West African slaves worked across the Chesapeake plantation. This paper will explore the various conditions and adaptations that the African slaves acquired while working in the Chesapeake plantation.
  • Slavery and Secession in Georgia The representatives of the State of Georgia were worried because of the constant assaults concerning the institution of slavery, which have created the risk of danger to the State.
  • Slavery of African in America: Reasons and Purposes Since the beginning of the sixteenth century, the African slaves were shipped to Europe and Eastern Atlantics, but later the colonies started demanding workers and the trade shifted to the Americas.
  • Slavery in Charleston, South Carolina Prior to the Year 1865 Charleston is a city in South Carolina and one of the largest cities in the United States. It speaks about the life and origin of the slaves and also highlights some of their experiences; their […]
  • Verisimilitude of Equiano’s Narrative and Understanding of Slavery The main argument in the answer to Lovejoy was that the records could clarify the author’s true age, which is the key to the dismissal of the idea that Equiano is a native African.
  • The Case for Reparations: Slavery and Segregation Consequences in the US Ta-Nehisi Coates, in his essay The Case for Reparations, examines the consequences of slavery and segregation in the United States and argues the importance of reparations for black Americans, both in a financial and moral […]
  • Critique of Colin Thies’ “Commercial Slavery” The goal of the article was to evaluate the economic and political situation of the African slave trade and avoid other aspects according to which people were considered as oppressed and enslaved.
  • Fredrick Douglas Characters. Impact of Slavery The institution of slavery drove and shaped the enslaved people to respond and behave in different ways in that Fredrick Bailey was forced to flee away from slavery and later changed his name to Fredrick […]
  • Litwack’s Arguments on the Aftermath of Slavery This paper seeks to delve into a technical theme addressed by Leon on what kind of freedom was adopted by the ex-slaves prior to the passage of the 13th U.S.constitutional amendment of 1865 that saw […]
  • Slavery, Civil War, and Abolitionist Movement in 1850-1865 They knew they were free only they had to show the colonists that they were aware of that.[1] The slaves were determined and in the unfreed state they still were in rebellion and protested all […]
  • Slavery History in North America in the Middle 1830s I was born in a small village in Georgia, in the middle 1830s, a time when the United States was going through a lot of slave trade activities, and to many, the trade was accommodated […]
  • The Major Developments in Slavery During 1800-1877 Several states in the South, in 1877 beginning with Georgia, took gain of this by issuing a succession of laws and a tax was put on voting.
  • Slavery in America: Causes and Effects Slavery in America was a period in which people were caught and taken to do manual work in America from various parts of the world as a result of colonization.
  • Slavery as an Institution in America This paper will look at the factors that enhanced the expansion of slavery as an institution in America during this period and further highlight the views held by the southern on slavery about its social […]
  • Concept of Slavery Rousseau’s Analysis Rights and slavery are presented by the thinker as two contrary notions; Rousseau strived to provide the analysis of rights in their moral, spiritual sense; the involvement into dependence from the rulers means the involvement […]
  • The Literature From Slavery to Freedom Its main theme is slavery but it also exhibits other themes like the fight by Afro-Americans for freedom, the search for the identity of black Americans and the appreciation of the uniqueness of African American […]
  • Slavery in New Orleans and Charleston This paper is going to establish this claim by making a comparison of the lives of the slaves who lived in the urban areas such as the New Orleans and Charleston with those slaves that […]
  • How Slavery Has Affected the Lives and Families of the African Americans? This paper will focus on how slavery in the earlier years has affected the lives and families of the African Americans in the year 2009.
  • Slavery as One of the Biggest Mistakes And the last important thing which caused forming the institution of slavery for such a long period in the judgment of Winthrop D.
  • Colonial Economy of America: Poverty, Slavery and Rich Plantations This topic deals with life in the colonial economy of America and the approach of white people towards black people. Mainly through natural production, the people became wealthy and they led a typical way of […]
  • African Slavery and European Plantation Systems: 1525-1700 However, with the discovery of sugar production at the end of the 15th Century to the Atlantic Islands and the opening up of the New World in the European conquests, the Portuguese discovered new ways […]
  • “Slavery and African Life: Occidental, Oriental, and African Slave Trades” by Patrick Manning The author’s approach of examining the slavery issue from the lens of economic history and the involvement of normal Africans living in Africa is then examined.
  • Slavery and Democracy in 19th Century America In the 19th century when white folks are busy building a nation and taking part in the more significant aspects of creating a new future for their children, Negro slaves were still doing a backbreaking […]
  • Abraham Lincoln`s Role in the Abolishment of Slavery in America In this speech, Lincoln emphasized the need for the law governing slavery to prevail and pointed out the importance of the independence of individual states in administering laws that governed slavery without the interference of […]
  • Cotton, Slavery, and Old South The early nineteenth century was a time that was as significant for the south as it was for the north. If the south was to be divided into the upper south and the lower south, […]
  • Slavery in Latin America and North America In the French and British Caribbean colonies, slaves were also imported in great numbers and majority of the inhabitants were slaves.
  • “American Slavery an American Freedom” by Edmund S. Morgan The book witnesses the close alliance between the establishment of freedom rights in Virginia and the rise of slavery movement which is considered to be the greatest contradiction in American history.
  • Lincoln and African Americans’ Role in the Abolition of Slavery This paper seeks to compare and contrast the role of Abraham Lincoln and the African Americans in bringing slavery to an end in the US.
  • Western Expansion and Its Influence on Social Reforms and Slavery The western expansion refers to the process whereby the Americans moved away from their original 13 colonies in the 1800s, towards the west which was encouraged by explorers like Lewis and Clarke.
  • How Important Was Slave Resistance as a Cause of Abolition of Slavery? This was particularly evident throughout the history of slaves in the Americas, and across the historical geography of slavery, from the time the slaves were seized from Africa through to the life they were subjected […]
  • “Up From Slavery” by Booker T. Washington Each morning it was the duty of the overseer to assign the daily work for the slaves and, when the task was completed, to inspect the fields to see that the work had been done […]
  • U.S. in the Fight Against a Modern Form of Slavery Since the United States of America is the most powerful nation in the world it must spearhead the drive to eradicate this new form of slavery within the U.S.and even outside its borders.
  • The Profitability of Slavery for the Slave Master What is missing from this story is the fact that in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, North American colonies had to buy African slaves on a world market at prices which reflected the high profitability […]
  • Slavery in the United States There was a sharp increase in the number of slaves during the 18th century, and by the mid of the century, 200,000 of them were working in the American colonies.
  • Sociology, Race & Law. Cuban Form of Slavery Today Castro was benefiting alone from the sweat of many Cubans who worked abroad and in Cuba thinking that they could better their livelihood.
  • African American Women’s Gender Relations and Experience Under Slavery When the New England Confederation was formed in 1643 to promote matters of common concern for the New England Colonies, one provision of the compact was for the rendition of bondservants.
  • How African Men and Women Experienced Slavery? The book Ar’ not I a Woman, the author portrays that life of a woman in plantation was more difficult that life of a man because of different duties and responsibilities assigned to a woman-slave.
  • Abraham Lincoln and Free Slavery Moreover, he made reference to the fact that the union was older than the constitution and referred to the spirit of the Articles of the Constitution 1774 and Articles of Confederation of 1788.
  • Origins, Operations, and Effects of Black Slavery in US However, the impact that the enslavement of the vast numbers of Africans brought to America was phenomenal. This was a major effect of the slave trade.
  • “Slavery Isn’t the Issue” by Juan Williams Review The author claims that the reparation argument is flawed as affirmative action has ensured that a record number of black Americans move up the economic and social ladder.
  • Protest Against Slavery in ”Pudd’nhead Wilson” by Mark Twain Pudd’nhead Wilson is the ironic tale of a man who is born a slave but brought up as the heir to wealthy estate, thanks to a switch made while the babies were still in the […]
  • African Americans Struggle Against Slavery The following paragraphs will explain in detail the two articles on slavery and the African American’s struggle to break away from the heavy and long bonds of slavery. The website tells me that Dredd Scott […]
  • Slavery in the World The first independent state in the western hemisphere, the United States of America, was formed as a result of the revolutionary war of North American colonies of England for Independence in 1775-1783.
  • Slaves and Slavery in Ancient Rome The revolt of slaves under the direction of Spartacus 73-71 BC is considered the most significant event of the period of crisis of the Roman republican regime in the first century DC and is estimated […]
  • Issue of Slavery in “The Known World” by E. P. Jones The slaves were remained in the custody of the white masters received the same treatment as that of bondage slaves. The book is a beautiful representation of pre-war life in Virginia and how the widespread […]
  • Olaudah Equiano as a Fighter Against Slavery Equiano’s Narrative demonstrates a conscious effort to ascribe spiritual enlightenment to the political arena and hence ascertain the importance of the relationship between spiritual intervention, the amysterious ways of Providence’ and parliamentary decisions concerning the […]
  • Lincoln as a Fighter Against Slavery It is while a leader of the party he made her first moves to fight slavery in the Illinois house where he argued that slavery was a social evil and ought to be dealt away […]
  • Slavery in Early America Review However, the local population was dwindling with the influx of disease and abuse and this, combined with Spain abolishing the enslavement of natives in the Americas in the mid-1500s, necessitated a need to acquire Africans […]
  • Slavery Without the Civil War: Hypothesis The demand for slaves and the positive effect of this in the slaveholders’ profitability as well as the fact that both slaveholders and the slaves need one another to survive saw to it that the […]
  • Slavery: Central Paradox of American History Since the rise of United States as a nation, historians have long thought of the emergence of slavery and freedom in our society as a great contradiction. As the central paradox, slavery needed to emerge […]
  • Brief History of Slavery in the United States In his article regarding the true sentiments of the slaves, Genovese suggests the reasons why the slaves were perceived as lazy was as the result of their more natural, rural lifestyle.”The setting remained rural, and […]
  • Virginia After the Boom: Slavery and “The Losers” New labor force that came to Virginia “threatened the independence of the small freeman and worsened the lot of the servant”.
  • Antebellum Slavery in Mark Twain’s World Twain’s depiction of Jim and his relationship with Huck was somewhat flawed in order to obey the needs of the story, and also by Twains’ interest in slave autobiographies and also in blackface minstrelsy.
  • Slavery in New York City: Impact and Significance Blacks’ significance in the development of the city’s most critical systems, such as labor, race, and class divisions, makes it possible to conclude that the influence of slavery in New York was substantial. The effect […]
  • Slavery In The United Stated Society In the above discussion, there is a short story of slavery in the USA. By abolishing slavery in the USA is the sign of democracy and human dignity.
  • Black American Authors on Slavery Analysis The work is centered on the same theme that the Narrative the author tells the reader of her experiences as a slave and the way she managed to escape from it.
  • Slavery Still Exists in American Prisons An examination of the history of the penal system as it existed in the State of Texas proves to be the best illustration of the comparisons between the penal system and the system of slavery.
  • Ghana: The Consequences of Colonial Rule and Slavery One of the reasons for this dependency is that the country had been the foothold for the slave trade for about four centuries.
  • “Slavery and the Making of America” Documentary According to the film Slavery and the Making of America, slavery had a profound effect on the historical development of American colonies into one country.
  • Harriet Jacobs’s Account of Slavery Atrocities She wrote that she wanted the women living in the North to understand the conditions in which slaves lived in the Souths, and the sufferings that enslaved women had to undergo.
  • Anti Slavery and Abolitionism Both gradual emancipation and conditional emancipation were not allowed, but free blacks from the North and evangelicals revealed their opposition in the form of the movement that required the development of social reform.
  • Sexual Slavery in “The Apology” Film by Hsiung The documentary being discussed focuses on the experiences of three women, the survivors of military sexual slavery in China, South Korea, and the Republic of the Philippines.
  • Slavery Resistance from Historical Perspective The lack of rights and power to struggle resulted in the emergence of particular forms of resistance that preconditioned the radical shifts in peoples mentalities and the creation of the tolerant society we can observe […]
  • Slavery Abolition and Newfound Freedom in the US One of the biggest achievements of Reconstruction was the acquisition of the right to vote by Black People. Still, Black Americans were no longer forced to tolerate inhumane living conditions, the lack of self-autonomy, and […]
  • Slavery Elements in Mississippi Black Code These are the limitation of the freedom of marriage, the limitation of the freedom of work, and the limitation of the freedom of weapon.
  • History: Slavery in Southern States The strategy of pacification was especially prevalent during that time because wealthy slaveowners wanted to keep possible protests under control and prevent the rest of the white population from supporting the abolition of slavery in […]
  • Slavery in “Abolition Speech” by William Wilberforce The following article is devoted to the description of the problem of slavery and the slave trade in Africa. The author also underlines the incompetency of the committee, which is in charge of the question […]
  • Slavery History: Letters Analysis The letters analyzed in this paper give a piece of the picture that was observed during the 1600s and the 1700s when slaves from different parts of the world had to serve their masters under […]
  • Social Psychology of Modern Slavery The social psychology of modern slavery holds the opinion that slavery still exists today, contrary to the belief of many people that slavery does not exist in the modern world.
  • Slavery: History and Influence The slaves were meant to provide labor for the masters and generate wealth. During the day, they would sneak to breastfeed the newborns.
  • Reformer and Slavery: William Lloyd Garrison The newspaper was published until the end of the civil war and the abolition of slavery by the enactment of the Thirteenth Amendment.
  • Slavery Role in the American Literature Stowe has claimed that the anti slavery groups questioned the morality of the white Christians who were at the fore front in the oppression of the Black people.
  • Slavery as a Cause of the American Civil War On the other hand, one is to keep in mind that many historians are of the opinion that the reasons for the war are not so easy to explain.
  • Thomas Jefferson on Civil Rights, Slavery, Racism When I authored the declaration of independence of the United States of America, I was having a democratic perspective of the American people on my mind.
  • Slavery, American Civil War, and Reconstruction Indian removal from the Southeast in the late 19th century was as a result of the rapid expansion of the United States into the south.
  • Slavery in the Ancient World and the US Appearance age and attitude of the slaves acted as the determinants to the wage that they were to be paid for their services.
  • Slavery in “Flight to Canada” Novel by Ishmael Reed In his novel Flight to Canada, Ishmael Reed blurs the boundaries between the prose and poetry as well as the past and the present to express his satirical criticism of the legacy of slavery even […]
  • Slavery and the Southern Society’s Development The fact that quite a huge number of white people moved to the “Deep South” where cotton planting was among the most lucrative forms of income-generating activities, just goes to show that the whites relied […]
  • Paternalistic Ethos During American Slavery Era
  • The Book About Slavery by Hinton Rowan Helper
  • Slavery and Freedom: The American Paradox
  • Slavery in the USA and Its Impact on Americans
  • Voices From the Epoch of Slavery
  • “Slavery by Another Name” Documentary
  • Modern Slavery in Thailand and Mauritania
  • Frederick Douglass as an Anti-Slavery Activist
  • George Whitfield’s Views on Slavery in the US
  • Internal Colonization and Slavery in British Empire
  • Slavery in “Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass”
  • Slavery in “A Brief History of the Caribbean”
  • Slavery in Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass
  • Slavery Phenomenon and Its Causes in the USA
  • Women Trafficking and Slavery: Trends and Solutions
  • Human Trafficking and Modern-day Slavery
  • Slavery Arguments and American Civil War
  • Ethical Problems With Non-Human Slavery and Abuse
  • Racism in USA: Virginia Laws on Slavery
  • Sojourner Truth: Slavery Abolitionist and Women’s Suffrage
  • Slavery in Islamic Civilisation
  • Religious Studies of the Slavery Problem
  • Slavery and the Abolition of Slave Trade
  • Slavery and the Civil War Relationship
  • Abraham Lincoln Against Slavery
  • Blacks Role in Abolishing Slavery
  • The Poetry on the Topic of Slavery
  • John Brown and Thomas Cobb Role in Ending Slavery
  • Slavery in the Southern Colonies
  • Christianity, Slavery and Colonialism Paradox
  • Slavery and the Civil War
  • Literary Works’ Views on Slavery in the United States
  • Analysis of Slavery in American History in “Beloved“ by Tony Morrison
  • History of Abolishing Slavery
  • The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery
  • Sex Slavery in India
  • The Period of Slavery in the “Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl” by Harriet Jacobs
  • Slavery in America: “Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass”
  • Abolition of Slavery in Brazil
  • Slavery Effects on Enslaved People and Slave Owners
  • The Problem of Slavery in Africa
  • Racial Slavery in America
  • “Not For Sale: End Human Trafficking and Slavery”: Campaign Critique
  • Colonial Portuguese Brazil: Sugar and Slavery
  • Aristotle on Human Nature, State, and Slavery
  • Reform-Women’s Rights and Slavery
  • Human Trafficking in the United States: A Modern Day Slavery
  • Oronooko by Aphra Behn and the Why there is no Justification for Slavery
  • Rise and Fall of Slavery
  • History of Slavery Constitution in US
  • Propaganda in Pro-slavery Arguments and Douglass’s Narrative
  • Testament Against Slavery: ”Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass”
  • Comparing and Contrasting three Versions of Slavery
  • How Did the French Revolution Impacted the Issue of Slavery and the History of Santo Domingo?
  • Why slavery is wrong
  • The Evolution of American Slavery
  • Slavery and Racism: Black Brazilians v. Black Americans
  • History of the African-Americans Religion During the Time of Slavery
  • The Emergence of a Law of Slavery in Mississippi
  • The Effects of Slavery on the American Society
  • The Ideas of Freedom and Slavery in Relation to the American Revolution
  • Up from Slavery, Down to the Ground: Sailing Amistad. A
  • Slavery in the British Colonies: Chesapeake and New England
  • Slavery and the Old South
  • African American Culture: A History of Slavery
  • Slavery and the Underground Railroad
  • Slavery Illuminates Societal Moral Decay
  • The Southern Argument for Slavery
  • Did Morality or Economics Dominate the Debates Over Slavery in the 1850s?
  • Masters and Slaves: ”Up From Slavery” by Washington Booker
  • No Reparations for Blacks for the Injustice of Slavery
  • Slavery: The Stronghold of the Brazil Economy
  • Slavery, Racism, and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade
  • Slavery, the Civil War & Reconstruction
  • Slavery in American History
  • The Slavery in America
  • Beloved by Toni Morrison: History of Slavery and Racial Segregation in America
  • African Americans: The Legacy of Slavery in the U.S.
  • Sexual Slavery and Prostitution During WWII and US Occupation in Japan
  • A New Dawn: The Abolishment of Slavery in the USA
  • How Slavery Applies to Africans Within the Islamic World?
  • Where Did Slavery Start First in the World?
  • How Did Slaves Respond to Slavery?
  • How the Germans Influenced Modern Day Slavery?
  • How Did Slavery Change From the Arrival of the First Enslaved People in the 1600s to the Abolition of Slavery in the 1860s?
  • How Did Slavery Encourage Both Economic Backwardness and Westward Expansion?
  • Why Did Colonial Virginians Replace Servitude With Slavery?
  • Did Slavery Create More Benefits or Problems for the Nation?
  • What Was Slavery Like and How Is It Today?
  • When and How Did Slavery Begin?
  • What Were the Positive and Negative Effects of Slavery on the Americas?
  • Is There a Difference Between Human Trafficking and Slavery?
  • How Did Slavery Shape Modern Society and the Colonial Nations?
  • How Did Economic, Geographic, and Social Factors Encourage the Growth of Slavery?
  • How Did Colonization Along the Atlantic Contribute to Slavery?
  • What Degree Did Slavery Play in the Civil War?
  • Modern Day Slavery: What Drives Human Trafficking?
  • How Did Slavery Start in Africa?
  • How Did Slavery Affect the Spirit of the Enslaved and the Enslavers?
  • What Did the Haitian Revolution Do to End Racial Slavery?
  • How Were African Americans Treated During the Slavery Period?
  • What Created Slavery?
  • How Important Was Slavery Before 1850? Was It a Marginal Institution, Peripheral to the Development of American Society?
  • How Did African American Slavery Help Shape America?
  • When Did Slavery Start in America?
  • How Can the World Allow Slavery to Continue Today?
  • What Were the Differences Between Indentured Servitude and Slavery?
  • In What Industries Is Slavery Most Prevalent?
  • How Was Slavery Abolished?
  • Did the Atlantic Plantation Complex Create Slavery?
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What is modern slavery?

modern slavery

“We were only there to work. It felt like I was in jail.” Laboni, Nepal

You might think that slavery is a thing of the past. But right now, almost 50 million people are trapped in slavery worldwide.   

It’s a problem that affects every country on earth –  including yours .   

In many ways, slavery may look different from the slavery of the Transatlantic slave trade, but modern slavery – as a term – encompasses many forms of slavery, including human trafficking and people being born into slavery.  

There are hundreds of definitions of modern slavery. All of these include aspects of control, involuntary actions and exploitation.  

At Anti-Slavery International, we define modern slavery as when an individual is exploited by others, for personal or commercial gain. Whether tricked, coerced, or forced, they lose their freedom . This includes but is not limited to human trafficking, forced labour and debt bondage.

Our mission is to stop slavery – to secure freedom for everyone, everywhere, always.  

essay on modern slavery

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Modern slavery is all around us, often hidden in plain sight. People can become enslaved making our clothes, serving our food, picking our crops, working in factories, or working in houses as cooks, cleaners or nannies. Victims of modern slavery might face violence or threats, be forced into inescapable debt, or have their passport taken away and face being threatened with deportation.  

Many people have fallen into this trap because they were trying to escape poverty or insecurity, improve their lives and support their families. Now, they can’t leave.  

According to the latest Global Estimates of Modern Slavery (2022 ) from Walk Free, the International Labour Organization and the International Organization for Migration:  

  • 49.6 million people live in modern slavery – in forced labour and forced marriage
  • Roughly a quarter of all victims of modern slavery are children
  • 22 million people are in forced marriages. Two out of five of these people were children
  • Of the 27. 6 million people trapped in forced labour , 17.3 million are in forced labour exploitation in the private economy, 6.3 million are in commercial sexual exploitation , and nearly 4 million are in forced labour imposed by state authorities
  • The Covid-19 pandemic has exacerbated the conditions that lead to modern slavery
  • Migrant workers are particularly vulnerable to forced labour.

Source: Global Estimates of Modern Slavery: Forced Labour and Forced Marriage , Geneva, September 2022  

Types of slavery today  

Modern slavery takes many forms. The most common are:  

  • Human trafficking . The use of violence, threats or coercion to transport, recruit or harbour people in order to exploit them for purposes such as forced prostitution, labour, criminality, marriage or organ removal
  • Forced labour . Any work or services people are forced to do against their will, usually under threat of punishment
  • Debt bondage/bonded labour . The world’s most widespread form of slavery. People trapped in poverty borrow money and are forced to work to pay off the debt, losing control over both their employment conditions and the debt
  • Descent –based slavery (where people are born into slavery). A very old form of slavery, where people are treated as property, and their “slave” status has been passed down the maternal line.
  • Child slavery . When a child is exploited for someone else’s gain. This can include child trafficking, child soldiers, child marriage and child domestic slavery
  • Forced and early marriage . When someone is married against their will and cannot leave. Most child marriages can be considered slavery
  • Domestic servitude . Domestic work and domestic servitude are not always slavery, and when properly regulated can be an important source of income for many people. However, when someone is working in another person’s home, they may be particularly vulnerable to abuses, exploitation, and slavery, as they might be hidden from sight and lack legal protection.

Why are people in slavery today?  

People may end up trapped in slavery because they’re vulnerable to being tricked, trapped and exploited, often as a result of poverty and exclusion and because laws do not properly protect them.  

People can be particularly vulnerable to modern slavery when external circumstances push them into taking risky decisions in search of opportunities to provide for their families, or when people find they are simply pushed into jobs in exploitative conditions. Anyone could be pressed into forced labour, but people in vulnerable situations – such as being in debt, or not having access to their passport – are most at risk. Crises like the Covid-19 pandemic and climate change can make people even more vulnerable to exploitation.  

Where do we find slavery?  

People are being exploited and pushed into slavery all around the world. While it may take different forms, we’re committed to ending slavery for everyone, everywhere.  

Slavery is a problem in the UK, where many people experience human trafficking, bonded labour and forced labour. Many products on our local shop shelves might have been made by people in forced labour, but the complex supply chains that businesses have created might make it harder for business to spot exploitation and abuses in their supply chains. In many cases they even hide behind this complexity to evade responsibility. That’s why we are pushing for new laws to protect workers and hold businesses accountable for exploitation occurring in their supply chains.  

Slavery may be hidden but it exists and it’s controlling the lives of millions of people .  

Find out more

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We need to change what people think modern slavery is

essay on modern slavery

Senior lecturer, Bangor University

essay on modern slavery

Senior Lecturer in Psychology, Bangor University

Disclosure statement

Fay Short was commissioned to write an objective evaluation of the project by the North Wales Anti-Slavery Coordinator.

Tracey Lloyd was commissioned to write an objective evaluation of the project by the North Wales Anti-Slavery Co-ordinator

Bangor University provides funding as a member of The Conversation UK.

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essay on modern slavery

What images does the word “slavery” conjure up in your mind? Men in iron collars shipped from Africa on huge wooden galleons, forced to work the fields under the whip of the master? Perhaps you think that slavery is an old concept that became obsolete in Britain in 1833 with the introduction of the Slavery Abolition Act ?

If so, you’d be wrong. Sadly, the reality of slavery is that it continues to exist in our modern world and our belief that this crime is only an artefact of history might be making it harder to detect and disrupt. As psychologists, we are particularly interested in understanding the minds of the victim and the criminal, and are working towards an intervention to encourage a better understanding of exploitation.

Hidden crimes

The Walk Free Foundation describes modern slavery as “possessing or controlling another person for your own benefit or to make a profit”. One example is a person who has been trafficked into a country to do manual labour. The gang master might confiscate their passport, pay them less than minimum wage for working illegally long hours, and then take back all of this small wage packet to pay for “living expenses”, such as housing in a cold warehouse with many other workers and no proper beds, kitchen, or toilet facilities.

Modern slavery and human trafficking are hidden crimes. Just over 2,000 victims were reported in the UK last year, but some estimates put the real figure as high as 13,000 .

One of the problems in detecting this crime is that many people may not recognise slavery in action. Members of the public might fail to notice the signs of slavery, while police may not be aware that an offender is committing a crime under the control of another criminal.

Perhaps even more concerning is the fact that some criminals may not see their actions as “slavery” while some victims may not see themselves as “slaves”. One example can be seen in a recent news report about a man convicted of holding his wife as a domestic slave . Many people may view this as a case of domestic abuse, but the control and enforced labour in the home for the benefit of the husband meant that this was legally categorised as modern day slavery.

essay on modern slavery

Defining terms

One explanation for why a victim and criminal may not perceive a situation as slavery could be a mismatch between the self-schema and the “slavery” schema. A schema is your understanding of all of the elements that make up a certain thing: for example, your schema for a teacher might include using a red pen, wearing glasses, and holding a notebook. Your cognitive schemas are created through experience: to return to our example, if you and your friend attended different types of school then you may hold different schemas for a “teacher”.

If you have no personal experience on which to base your schema then you might rely on cultural stereotypes presented in the media. There is a clear media stereotype for slavery, and you can see this instantly recognisable schema if you run an internet search. Search Google images for “slave” – and almost all of the images will show African males in chains. Think about the concept of “slavery” presented at the start of this article, and consider whether this outdated perception could be the schema for “slave” held by modern criminals and victims.

Our self-schema is our understanding of all the elements that make us up as individuals, and it is clear that this old-fashioned definition of slavery will not match the self-schema of modern victims and criminals. This mismatch between the two could be one reason why victims claim that they are not being held as a slave and perpetrators deny that their relationship with the victim involves slavery.

One strategy for reducing the mismatch between the self-schema and the slavery schema is to educate people about modern slavery. As the stereotype for slavery becomes less dated, then the characteristics of the modern slave and slaver will become more similar to the self-schema held by modern individuals.

Breaking the chains

The North Wales Anti-Slavery Project , under the guidance of co-ordinator Jim Coy, has been shining a light on the dark figure of modern slavery by running conferences and training courses to raise awareness of the signs of modern slavery. One incredible success story for the project has been Operation BASE, which resulted in the rescue of 111 migrant workers living and working in terrible conditions.

We were asked to review the North Wales Anti-Slavery Project as independent experts, and concluded that this project has taken the first steps towards making North Wales hostile to slavery . But more work is needed – and we will be working with the project in the future to explore how psychological interventions could help to change the slavery schemas held by both victims and criminals.

These types of awareness-raising activities and targeted interventions will, in the words of the leader of the British anti-slavery movement of the 1800s , William Wilberforce, ensure that we can never say again that we did not know.

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Nurta Mohamed, 13, a Somali girl sits inside her mother's makeshift shelter after she ran away from a suspected forced marriage at the Alafuuto camp for internally displaced persons in Garasbaaley district of Mogadishu, Somalia August 14, 2020. Picture taken August 14, 2020. REUTERS/Feisal Omar - RC2LHI9D74I0

One in four victims of modern slavery – of which forced marriages are a part – are children. Image:  REUTERS/Feisal Omar - RC2LHI9D74I0

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Stay up to date:, human rights.

  • Modern slavery is rife in the developed world contrary to popular belief.
  • We need cross-border collaboration among actors in law enforcement, civil society, academia and the private sector to stop the phenomenon.
  • Data- and knowledge-sharing are the most powerful tools we have to address it, but they have their challenges. Collaboration can ease them.

Some believe that slavery is a thing of the past, but that is not the case. The most recent global slavery index estimates that there are 40.3 million women, men and children caught up in it, of whom 24.9 million are in forced labour and 15.4 million living in forced marriages. One in four victims of modern slavery are children.

The phenomenon is another type of global pandemic and, contrary to popular belief, it is prevalent even in developed countries. In fact, more than one and a half million people are living in conditions of modern slavery in Europe, North America, Japan and Australia.

But what exactly is modern slavery? The control of one person by another for economic exploitation, sexual use or psychological benefit , involving forced labour exploitation, forced sexual exploitation, forced marriage, state-imposed forced labour, forced child labour or child soldiering .

It is also highly lucrative. A recent International Labour Organization report revealed that modern slavery is estimated to generate profits of $150 billion per year globally.

Traffickers may be family members, employers or strangers, but each exploit the vulnerability of victims and are motivated by low risk and high reward.

essay on modern slavery

Collaboration among actors in law enforcement, civil society, academia and the private sector – and across borders too – is pivotal to overcoming the current status quo. It will facilitate the sharing of data and knowledge, and help develop appropriate technology solutions in order to eliminate, detect, investigate and prosecute modern slavery cases. Here's how:

Technology a double-edged sword

Experts are leveraging technology to tackle slavery on multiple fronts. Slave labour can be mapped out at known sites of modern slavery (such as brick kilns) from space or AI-powered chatbots that carry out conversations with buyers and providers of sexual services to generate leads for law enforcement.

In addition, machine-learning algorithms can analyse advertisements to identify at-risk children, whilst AI can be used for the analysis of statements produced by companies to demonstrate their compliance with the Modern Slavery Act.

While technology can offer benefits in combating slavery, it has also made it easier for perpetrators to perform myriad activities such as recruiting victims, advertising victims to potential customers and conducting financial transactions.

For example, with the rapid growth in digital technology, the global online community of perpetrators has been climbing and new forms of child abuse , such as live-streamed abuse, have emerged.

A lack of data-driven decision-making is stalling progress

The availability of reliable and timely data on areas such as trafficker profiles and the status of investigations is critical in the global fight against slavery. It can then be appropriately shared with the anti-slavery community including law enforcement agencies worldwide.

However, difficulties associated with gathering and storing the data, inadequate data management practices, siloed data access and a lack of standardised data sets make it difficult for policy makers, researchers, practitioners and academics working in the space to develop effective intervention strategies.

Microsoft is a founding member of Tech Against Trafficking , an industry coalition working to address these issues including the development of an open-data standard for collecting and recording data.

Law enforcement professionals worldwide are also overwhelmed by the massive amount of data that they have to examine and often rely on outdated systems to investigate a case.

For example, several agencies still rely on human reviewers to review Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) and thereby determine if an image involves a previously identified or a new child pornography victim. PhotoDNA can relieve humans via the review of known CSAM material.

essay on modern slavery

The privacy concern attached to data

Most technologies that tackle slavery require data and should respect the privacy of the survivors. It is therefore important to ask key questions as part of technology development. This may include:

How does the technology benefit the survivor, relevant stakeholders and society?

Has consent been obtained from the survivor?

What sensitive information is collected, and how is it used and protected?

For how long and where is the information stored, and who has access to it?

What information is shared with others?

Can survivors opt out?

Fragmented organisational efforts with governments trailing behind

Anti-slavery organisations do not collaborate closely, and there are disjointed efforts in developing tools to combat slavery.

For example, one analysis conducted by the Office of the Special Representative and Coordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings (OSCE) and Tech Against Trafficking in 2020 revealed a list of over 300 technology tools and initiatives addressing trafficking. Several of them were redundant or addressing overlapping problems.

Furthermore, most of these tools are developed by the private sector and NGOs, with governments trailing behind.

Governments also have a major role to play in making sure that victims are treated with respect and assisted in re-integrating into society, but the absence of governance structures in this regard is palpable.

There are some victims of modern slavery who have been trafficked into a foreign country facing deportation or waiting in custody as illegal immigrants. In the US, the T visa is a way to provide relief to victims by enabling them to seek employment authorisation in the US. However, it is difficult to obtain and involves a lengthy process, leaving victims in an even more vulnerable state.

Spreading the word on the mental toll

The psychological well-being of the those working in the anti-slavery space is not given the attention it deserves.

Working with survivors, sifting through the reported content on abuse, conducting investigations and building technologies can all take a toll on the mental health of the partaking stakeholders.

It is very important to acknowledge and invest in the psychological health of those involved in the fight against this heinous crime.

The average person doesn't realise how insidious the effects are

Creating awareness campaigns can help debunk misconceptions about modern slavery, encourage the general public to question their shopping habits and push companies to review their anti-modern slavery best practices.

For instance, Microsoft is working to tackle some of the challenges. Emerging technologies might not have reached their potential, but they can already help in the fight to end modern slavery. Governments, companies and civil society should redouble their efforts to ensure that the benefits of these powerful technologies are realised, and that their risks are addressed through better oversight, governance and regulation.

Each of us, as members of the public, has a role to play. Encouraging individuals to detect the warning signs, report potential crimes, and even come forward to help develop solutions is integral to creating change.

Much needs to be done to fight modern slavery, and these efforts should always respect the dignity of the victims.

It's time to change our mindset. As long as our understanding of slavery is archaic, we will fail to spot just how easily children can be manipulated to engage in sexually explicit conduct online for commercial purposes, for instance, or that the raw materials in our electronics originated from forced labour.

Without this knowledge we are unknowingly contributing to exacerbating the modern slavery problem.

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The Concept of Modern Slavery: Definition, Critique, and the Human Rights Frame

  • Published: 07 December 2018
  • Volume 20 , pages 229–248, ( 2019 )

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  • Janne Mende 1  

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Modern slavery is a major topic of concern in international law and global governance, in civil society, and in academic debates. Yet, what does modern slavery mean, and can its highly different forms be covered in a single concept? This paper discusses these questions in three steps: First, it develops common definitions of modern slavery. Second, it discusses critical rejections of these definitions. The two camps that adhere to the definitions of modern slavery, and that reject them, respectively, face certain limits. In a third step, the paper takes up with the limits and the strengths of both. It suggests that the limits of definitions of modern slavery can be overcome by critical approaches; and that the limits of critical approaches can be overcome by definitions of modern slavery. The key is their integration into a human rights frame. Ultimately, the paper proposes an approach to modern slavery that neither relies on a binary distinction between slavery and non-slavery, nor does it strive for the abolishment of the concept of modern slavery. Rather, the paper calls for a normatively and contextually embedded approach within the human rights frame.

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Ancient slavery and modern ideologies: Orlando Patterson and M. I. Finley among the dons

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Slavery and the Revival of Anti-slavery Activism

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Modern Slavery in the Global Economy

For a discussion of the differences and similarities between former and contemporary forms of slavery, see Quirk 2006 . One major difference is the legal status of slavery. The concept of modern slavery as opposed to historical forms of slavery can refer to both illegal and legal forms of slavery, thus becoming more dynamic and ambiguous (Crane 2013 , p. 50). The paper refers to the concept of modern slavery to cover this heterogeneity.

Further documents are dedicated to parallel or sub-forms of modern slavery. One prominent issue area covers child trafficking and the worst forms of child labor. Another issue area is forced labor, defined in the International Labour Organization’s (ILO) Convention no. 29 (1930) and no. 105 (1957). The Bellagio-Harvard Guidelines recognize forced labor as slavery only when “the control over a person tantamount to possession” (§ 8) is exercised. The same differentiation applies to other practices and institutions similar to slavery. In order to not get lost with the numerous parallel forms and sub-forms of slavery, this chapter focuses only on some of the key documents that more generally deal with (modern) slavery.

Interestingly enough, the focus on the movement of people mirrors the focus on slave trade in former abolition movements (Skinner 2009 , 35; Lawrance 2010 , 64, also cf. Wong 2011 ).

Cf. Research Network on the Legal Parameters of Slavery 2012 , §3; Bales 2013 , p. 283 f.; Choi-Fitzpatrick 2017 ; Cockayne et al. 2016 .

Similarly Bales 2013 , p. 284; Choi-Fitzpatrick 2012 , p. 16; Craig et al. 2007 , p. 12; Weissbrodt and Anti-Slavery International 2002 , p. 7; Herzfeld 2002 , p. 50; Moravcsik 1998 , p. 174.

I do not address the question, whether all forms of prostitution are a subordination of women, or whether sex workers need to be empowered in order to secure their working and living conditions, as it is being discussed extensively elsewhere (Kempadoo et al. 2012 ; Weitzer 2011 ; Quirk 2007 ; Ehrenreich and Hochschild 2004 ; Raymond and Hughes 2001 ).

These conditions include certain ways of perception and perception biases (Sikkink 2017 , p. 160ff.), public attention being a limited resource, and limited funding opportunities more generally.

I borrow this idea from Spivak’s strategic essentialism that she describes to be misunderstood when it neglects its own time limit, financial situation, context, dependence, and historicity (Spivak et al. 1993 ).

Also see Choi-Fitzpatrick 2017 for a nuanced discussion of how profiteers from slavery rationalize slavery.

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Mende, J. The Concept of Modern Slavery: Definition, Critique, and the Human Rights Frame. Hum Rights Rev 20 , 229–248 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12142-018-0538-y

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Forms of Contemporary Slavery

To many, the term “slavery” conveys images of the transatlantic slave trade of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries with all its deplorable horrors. Relegated to a barbaric past, few realize that the enslavement of human beings exists even today and remains a grave problem across our world. From traditional chattel slavery in Sudan to the contentious issue of trafficking in persons, international organizations such as Anti-Slavery International and Free the Slaves estimate that at least 27 million people are held in slavery like situations today. (Because of the hidden nature of modern slavery, it is difficult to determine precise numbers and data on modern slaves.)

Persistent modern-day slavery covers a variety of human rights violations and includes the practices of child labor, bonded labor, serfdom, servile marriage, trafficking in persons (especially women and children), and the exploitation of domestic and migrant labor. Such slavery-like practices remain clandestine in nature and, in certain cases, accepted as a part of society, making them difficult to root out and eliminate. Public ignorance has contributed to governmental and international inaction to abolish such forms of slavery. The problem is compounded by the fact that, worldwide, victims of contemporary slavery are characterized by their poverty and vulnerability.

An examination of international instruments to eliminate slavery and slavery-like practices reveals an ongoing evolution in the understanding of slavery and the many forms of enslavement. The Vienna Congress Declaration on the Universal Abolition of Slave Trade was adopted in 1815, though it was only in 1926 that the League of Nations gave an international definition to slavery. The 1926 Slavery Convention and its 1956 protocol “Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery, the Slave Trade, and Institutions and Practices Similar to Slavery” defined slavery as “the status or condition of a person over whom any or all of the powers attaching to the right of ownership are exercised.” Article 4 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states: “No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.”

The slave trade was defined to include all acts involved in the capture, acquisition, or disposal of a person with intent to reduce the person to slavery; all acts involved in the acquisition of a slave with a view to selling or exchanging the person; all acts of disposal by sale or exchange of a slave acquired with a view to selling or exchanging; and, in general, every act of trade or transport in slaves.

The Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery, the Slave Trade, and Institutions and Practices Similar to Slavery brought into focus institutions and practices resembling slavery but which were not covered by the Slavery Convention, such as debt bondage, servile forms of marriage, and the exploitation of children and adolescents. The objective of the Supplementary Convention was to intensify national and international efforts to abolish slavery and all institutions and practices similar to slavery.

Content by Mini Singh Research Analyst, FSE

Content in Arabic by Raja El Habti Research Assistant, FSE

The New York Times

Magazine | the 1619 project, the 1619 project.

AUG. 14, 2019

essay on modern slavery

In August of 1619, a ship appeared on this horizon, near Point Comfort, a coastal port in the English colony of Virginia. It carried more than 20 enslaved Africans, who were sold to the colonists. No aspect of the country that would be formed here has been untouched by the years of slavery that followed. On the 400th anniversary of this fateful moment, it is finally time to tell our story truthfully.

Our democracy’s founding ideals were false when they were written. black americans have fought to make them true., if you want to understand the brutality of american capitalism, you have to start on the plantation., myths about physical racial differences were used to justify slavery — and are still believed by doctors today., america holds onto an undemocratic assumption from its founding: that some people deserve more power than others., for centuries, black music has been the sound of artistic freedom. no wonder everybody’s always stealing it., ‘i slide my ring finger from senegal to south carolina & feel the ocean separate a million families.’, what does a traffic jam in atlanta have to do with segregation quite a lot., why doesn’t the united states have universal health care the answer begins with policies enacted after the civil war., slavery gave america a fear of black people and a taste for violent punishment. both still define our prison system., the sugar that saturates the american diet has a barbaric history as the ‘white gold’ that fueled slavery., a vast wealth gap, driven by segregation, redlining, evictions and exclusion, separates black and white america., a re-education is necessary., most americans still don’t know the full story of slavery. this is the history you didn’t learn in school., ‘we are committing educational malpractice’: why slavery is mistaught — and worse — in american schools., the 1619 project continues, the 1619 podcast.

essay on modern slavery

An audio series from The Times observing the 400th anniversary of the beginning of American slavery.

Live at the Smithsonian

essay on modern slavery

Watch highlights of a symposium about how history is defined — and redefined — featuring historians, journalists and policymakers.

Reader Responses

essay on modern slavery

We asked you to share photographs and stories of your enslaved ancestors. The images and stories helped paint a picture of a too-often-erased American history.

essay on modern slavery

We asked you how you learned about slavery in school. You told us about degrading role play, flawed lessons and teachers who played down its horrors.


essay on modern slavery

The 1619 Project was conceived by Nikole Hannah-Jones. In this interview, she talks about the project and the reaction to it.

essay on modern slavery

In the N.B.A., the very term “owner” has come under fire, as players, most of whom are black, assert self-determination.

Behind the Scenes of 1619

essay on modern slavery

Since January, The Times Magazine has been working on an issue to mark the 400th anniversary of the first enslaved people arriving in America.

For teachers

Looking for ways to use this issue in your classroom? You can find curriculums, guides and activities for students developed by the Pulitzer Center at pulitzercenter.org/1619 . And it’s all free!

More on NYTimes.com


Women and girls at high risk of being pushed into modern slavery

At an age when children should be in school, millions are engaged in work that is potentially harmful to their health.

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Women and children are at high risk of being pushed into contemporary forms of slavery, UN-appointed independent rights experts  said  on Wednesday.   

In an alert to coincide with the  International Day for the Abolition of Slavery  on 2 December, they warned that global challenges such as COVID-19 , climate change and armed conflict have amplified existing vulnerabilities.  

According to figures released by  UNICEF  and  ILO  in June, almost 80 million children aged 5 to 17, are subjected to hazardous work which is classified as a contemporary form of slavery. 

Now, according to the experts, these children may be working longer hours or under worsening conditions as a result of the economic recession and school closures caused by the pandemic.   

Many others may have been forced into the worst forms of child labour, owing to job and income losses among their families.  This includes the forced recruitment of youngsters into armed and criminal groups. 

Children in Burkina Faso engage in the worst forms of child labor, including in artisanal gold mining and quarrying.

According to unofficial estimates cited by the experts, one in every 130 women and girls is subjected to contemporary forms of slavery such as child and forced marriage, domestic servitude, forced labour and debt bondage. 

“ High levels of exploitation also prevail in global supply chains, which often rely on and reinforce labour exploitation and deepen gender inequality ”, the experts said.  

They argue that “gender inequalities lie at the heart of contemporary forms of slavery”, but note that these practices are also fuelled by intersecting forms of discrimination, such as race, social and economic status, age, disability, sexual orientation, and migration status, among others.  

The experts urge Member States to establish safe migration pathways, along with easier access to decent work and more cooperation with the business sector, civil society organisations and trade unions.   

For them, “ accountability of perpetrators must be strengthened as a matter of priority, as currently impunity prevails in far too many instances .” 

“Slavery in all its forms needs to end for everyone, including women and children in contexts of armed conflict. Slavery is a disgrace to humanity which in the 21st century cannot be tolerated”, they conclude.  

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the  UN Voluntary Trust Fund on Contemporary Forms of Slavery . This year alone, 18,000 victims received vital assistance from organizations supported by the Fund. 

To mark the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery, the experts appeal to all Member States to increase their contribution to the Fund, or to make one for the first time. 

The Special Rapporteurs are part of what is known as the  Special Procedures  of the  Human Rights Council . They work on a voluntary basis; they are not UN staff and do not receive a salary for their work. They are independent from any government or organization and serve in their individual capacity.  

  • modern slavery


Essay On Modern Slavery

Modern-slavery is a gargantuan part of the world today. Many people might not realise it, but it is everywhere. Slavery is a very complex issue that happens to adults, teenager, and even kids, and the horrific things that happen to them is not okay. Modern slavery includes three important points to recognize, such as addressing the problem, examples, of slavery, and how to solve it. To begin, it is very imperative and paramount to address the problem of slavery and what it is. Someone is in slavery if they are being forced into something that they do not want to do, and many people do not realize this. “There are tens of millions of people trapped in various forms of slavery throughout the world today. Researchers estimate that 40 million are enslaved worldwide, generating $150 billion …show more content…

Many people may think that they cannot help with any problem so big, but even the most miniscule things have worth. First of all, someone can do things that may take a couple minutes, like donating to big organizations like Free the Slaves to help stop unfair employment practices. “Contact your U.S. Senators and Representative and tell them to increase funding for the Trafficking in Persons Office of the U.S. State Department to fight slavery on the front lines” (Slavery Today). Also, someone can contact their mayor to have them revamp and revitalize services for any victims of sex trafficking and make sure they do not treat them as criminals, but as survivors. On the other hand, there are things that one may do that can be completed in an amount of hours. For example, one may volunteer for anti-trafficking organization, or organize fundraising and awareness day at school. Lastly, one may complete something in a couple of days, such as hosting an event to raise awareness or funds. There are copious ways of helping slavery come to an

Examples Of The Three Fifths Compromise

The issue of slavery was a significant “thorn in the side” of America from the very inception of our nation. Despite the fact that slavery was an accepted legal phenomenon in the eighteenth century, it also invoked significant controversy. Many Americans, typically those denizens of the southern states, felt that slavery was an indispensable economic necessity. Alternatively, others opined that slavery was an inherently immoral and unethical institution which denied certain races basic human rights, and as such warranted abolition, no matter the consequences. Although the Constitution never mentions the word “slave” once, slavery is referenced to in the Constitution several times, in three prominent compromises that our founding fathers were forced to make, for the sake of the establishment of a unified nation.

What Is Frederick Douglass Argument In Chapter 4

The truth—the unpleasant, horrible truth—must be known because it is so significant. This has been one of the most impactful readings in school because it doesn't hold back. Although learning about slavery is neither joyful or simple, it reveals the truth that slavery still has a bearing on Black Americans' lives and experiences. Despite the need of educating about slavery, it appears that classroom discussions regarding the subject are doomed to failure in some classrooms. There are petitions to remove slavery from textbooks all around America.

Significance Of Declaration Of Sentiments And Letter To An English Abolitionists

In today’s society having a slave is unacceptable, so for many people they wonder what made people once think that having a slave was right. This letter allows students and scholars to get a first-hand look on a slave holders perspective of owning slaves. It allowed readers to try to understand slaveholder’s motives for believing slavery is tolerable. Reading the Letter to an English Abolitionist with an open mind is significant because it allows readers to have a better grasp on American history when studying

Slavery Dbq Essay

Did you know that "All of England's North American colonies allowed slavery and in he late 1700s"? Slavery had disappeared in England and in the Mid-Atlantic colonies by the end of the 1700s. Enslavement of the Africans was still going on, even though it had disappeared in England and in the Mid-Atlantic colonies. At the end of the Civil War enslavement of the Africans had finished. The way slavery was practiced in England, in the Mid-Atlantic colonies, and in the southern colonies was similar and different in many ways.

The fight to end slavery was not only made up of African-Americans but whites and women groups. Women gathered and collected signatures on anti-slavery memorials. “Much of the actual burden of gathering signatures for anti-slavery memorials was taken up by the social-minded female”(taken from document 5b) A second example of how individuals and groups efforts deal with institution is that the Southerners feared that with an increased number of antislavery states, the abolitionists would have a majority in the Senate and would be able to outlaw slavery so, some people did not abide by the Fugitive Slave Law. It took hard-working and selfless individuals and groups to fight for the freedom of African Americans.

Anti Slavery In America Essay

During the 1808-1861, the slavery in America is a really big issue that cause many problem that come afterward. I believed that every men and women are born equally from god. We should have our own life, liberties, and opportunities to live in a better life. However, when the slavery started to appear into our society, many controversy and conflict also come as a result of slavery. In the book, “The Neglected Period of Anti-Slavery in America” of Alice Dana Adams, he wrote an interesting quote from David Benedict, saying that “The existence of slavery in a country is calculated to awaken all the propensities of human nature, whether good or bad.”

Essay On Slavery In The South

Resistance helped enslaved African Americans endure their lives by striking back at white masters". This demonstrates that slaves also got away with things these were some examples on how the slaves

Slavery In Colonial America Essay

Slavery began long before the colonization of North America. This was an issue in ancient Egypt, as well as other times and places throughout history. In discussing the evolution of African slavery from its origins, the resistance and abolitionist efforts through the start of the Civil War, it is found to have resulted in many conflicts within our nation. In 1619, the first Africans in America arrived in Jamestown on a Dutch ship.

Literary Devices In The Underground Railroad

From this, derives a bond with the reader that pushes their understanding of the evil nature of slavery that society deemed appropriate therefore enhancing their understanding of history. While only glossed over in most classroom settings of the twenty-first century, students often neglect the sad but true reality that the backbone of slavery, was the dehumanization of an entire race of people. To create a group of individuals known for their extreme oppression derived from slavery, required plantation owner’s of the South to constantly embedded certain values into the lives of their slaves. To talk back means to be whipped.

Essay On The Abolition Of Slavery

Introduction: During the 1800’s, Slavery was an immense problem in the United States. Slaves were people who were harshly forced to work against their will and were often deprived of their basic human rights. Forced marriages, child soldiers, and servants were all considered part of enslaved workers. As a consequence to the abolition people found guilty were severely punished by the law.

Essay On African Slavery

How big of impact could slavery have done to Africa at least that’s what they said? The slave trade had huge and horrible impact on Africa because it resulted in a tremendous loss of life, Africa has not developed economically as a result of the Slave trade, and Africa still suffers and is unable to provide food and water for its people. Africa had a huge loss of people but to be exact “nearly 90 percent of the Africans in these two major regions came from only four zones in Africa. ”(“The Transatlantic Slave Trade”, para 48) all had to go even against their will 10 million enslaved men, women, and children from West and East Africa to North Africa, the Middle East, and India.

Essay On Slavery In Latin America

Slavery, is the condition in which a human being is owned and controlled by another. This institution has deep roots in human history. It was practiced in most of the world, from prehistoric times to the modern era. Despite this commonality, slave systems have varied considerably. Societies have experienced different degrees of it, with different practices and different outlooks, even though the basic characteristic was the same.

Essay On African American Slavery

Slavery Slavery was a life changing, horrific, and difficult time for the African Americans. They went through several trials daily. They came to America in 1619. Slavery became popular in the American colonies during the 18th century when slavery began to become well known and taken for granted. Slaves worked on tobacco,rice,cotton, and indigo plantations.

Persuasive Essay On Human Trafficking

Now after listing some of the official organization that are using technology to help end this form of slavery, I would like to list some of the ways we, in this modern age, can help end this grievous crime. It might be easy to hear the facts about human trafficking, but fall into the false idea that it is simply up to our government and other such groups to deal with this important issue, and this is simply not true, in our technology advanced day and age it is now easier than ever to help do our part to help end this horror. Anyone can and should join in the fight against human trafficking, we can do this by, learning the indicators of human trafficking so you can help identify a potential trafficking victim. Human trafficking awareness training is available for individuals, businesses, first responders, law enforcement, educators, and federal employees, and many others. You can work with a local religious community or congregation to help stop trafficking by supporting a victim service provider or spreading awareness of human trafficking or encourage your local schools to partner with students and include modern slavery in their curricula.

How To Stop Human Trafficking Persuasive Speech

For $90 you can buy a living, breathing human being. This is a horrible fact that needs to be changed. That is why I am here today. I would like to inform you about a particular form of human trafficking. Forced labour, or slavery.

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Modern slavery

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Despite the abolition of slavery in the nineteenth century, the practice is prevalent in the contemporary world. It is estimated that more people are enslaved today than during the few centuries of the transatlantic slave trade. Modern slavery poses a serious challenge to human rights protection worldwide, and many governments as well as international and regional bodies are working towards preventing and combating it.

This course explored the historical origins and forms of slavery from ancient times to the twenty-first century. It also looked at the international legal instruments regulating the prohibition of slavery: international human rights treaties, ILO conventions, as well as regional human rights instruments.

You should now be able to:

  • understand the historical origins of slavery as well as examples of slavery
  • understand the international legal framework prohibiting slavery
  • understand the concept of modern slavery and its various forms
  • analyse the applicable law and apply it to a given example/case study
  • think critically about human rights aspects of slavery in a variety of contexts and to articulate an independent view
  • critically analyse and evaluate proposals for new legislation addressing modern slavery.

If you are unsure about any of these, go back and reread the relevant section(s) of this course.


Slavery Essay for Students and Children

500+ words essay on slavery.

Slavery is a term that signifies the injustice that is being carried out against humans since the 1600s. Whenever this word comes up, usually people picture rich white people ruling over black people. However, that is not the only case to exist. After a profound study, historians found evidence that suggested the presence of slavery in almost every culture. It was not essentially in the form of people working in the fields, but other forms. Slavery generally happens due to the division of levels amongst humans in a society. It still exists in various parts of the world. It may not necessarily be that hard-core, nonetheless, it happens.

Slavery Essay

Impact of Slavery

Slavery is one of the main causes behind racism in most of the cultures. It did severe damage to the race relations of America where a rift was formed between the whites and blacks.

The impact of Slavery has caused irreparable damage which can be seen to date. Even after the abolishment of slavery in the 1800s in America, racial tensions remained amongst the citizens.

In other words, this made them drift apart from each other instead of coming close. Slavery also gave birth to White supremacy which made people think they are inherently superior just because of their skin color and descendant.

Talking about the other forms of slavery, human trafficking did tremendous damage. It is a social evil which operates even today, ruining hundreds and thousands of innocent lives. Slavery is the sole cause which gave birth to all this.

Get the huge list of more than 500 Essay Topics and Ideas

The Aftermath

Even though slavery was abolished over 150 years ago, the scars still remain. The enslaved still haven’t forgotten the struggles of their ancestors. It lives on in their hearts which has made them defensive more than usual. They resent the people whose ancestors brought it down on their lineage.

Even today many people of color are a victim of racism in the 21st century. For instance, black people face far more severe punishments than a white man. They are ridiculed for their skin color even today. There is a desperate need to overcome slavery and all its manifestations for the condition and security of all citizens irrespective of race, religion , social, and economic position .

In short, slavery never did any good to any human being, of the majority nor minority. It further divided us as humans and put tags on one another. Times are changing and so are people’s mindsets.

One needs to be socially aware of these evils lurking in our society in different forms. We must come together as one to fight it off. Every citizen has the duty to make the world a safer place for every human being to live in.

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Essay on Modern Day Slavery

Students are often asked to write an essay on Modern Day Slavery in their schools and colleges. And if you’re also looking for the same, we have created 100-word, 250-word, and 500-word essays on the topic.

Let’s take a look…

100 Words Essay on Modern Day Slavery

What is modern day slavery.

Modern day slavery is when people are forced to work without pay, controlled by threats, debt, and violence. It’s like being trapped with no freedom. It’s not just in faraway places but can be found worldwide, even in wealthy countries.

Types of Modern Slavery

There are many kinds of modern slavery. Some people are made to work in homes, farms, or factories. Others are tricked into owing money and must work to pay it off. Sadly, some are forced to fight as soldiers or marry without choice.

Who are the Victims?

Victims can be men, women, or children of all ages. They are often poor or in need, making them easy targets for those who want to exploit them. They can be from any country, including our own.

Fighting Modern Slavery

To stop modern slavery, governments, organizations, and people must work together. Laws need to be strong, and everyone should learn about the signs of slavery to help set victims free. It’s a big problem, but we can fight it with awareness and action.

250 Words Essay on Modern Day Slavery

Modern day slavery is a serious problem where people are trapped, controlled, and forced to work with no freedom. It’s like the old slavery, but it’s hidden and happens today. People are treated as objects, not humans, and are often scared or unable to ask for help.

There are many forms of this bad practice. Some people are forced to work in houses, farms, or factories for little or no money. Others are made to fight as soldiers or are married without their choice. Then, there are those tricked into working by being promised a good job, but they end up in a bad situation they can’t escape from.

Who Does It Affect?

Anyone can be a victim, but it’s usually the poor or those without a lot of power. Children and women are especially at risk. People from places where there is a lot of war or not enough jobs are more likely to be tricked into slavery.

Many people and groups are working to stop modern slavery. They help by making laws stronger, rescuing victims, and teaching people about the dangers. It’s important for everyone to know about this problem so they can help stop it.

Modern day slavery is a big issue that hurts many people around the world. By learning and telling others, we can all help to end it. It’s up to us to make sure everyone is free and treated fairly.

500 Words Essay on Modern Day Slavery

Modern day slavery is a term that describes situations where people are forced to work or marry against their will. It also includes people who are bought and sold like objects. Even though slavery is illegal everywhere in the world, it still exists today. People who are trapped in these conditions often can’t leave because they are scared, being threatened, or they owe money they can’t pay back.

There are many different forms of modern slavery. Some people are forced to work in homes, farms, or factories for little or no money. This is called forced labor. Human trafficking is when people are moved to different places, inside or outside of their own country, to be exploited. Child labor is another form, where children are made to work instead of going to school. Lastly, forced marriage is when someone is married without their choice, often at a very young age.

Why Does Modern Slavery Happen?

Modern slavery happens for many reasons. Poverty is a big one. People who don’t have enough money may borrow some and then have to work to pay it back, but sometimes the work never ends. War and conflicts can also make people more vulnerable to slavery. Sometimes, it’s because of discrimination based on race, gender, or religion. People who are less powerful or have fewer rights are more at risk.

Anyone can become a victim of modern slavery, but some are more at risk than others. Often, it’s people who are in a tough spot, like those who are very poor, or who have been forced to leave their homes. Many times, these people are looking for a better life or a good job but end up being tricked and trapped by those who want to exploit them.

Many people and organizations around the world are fighting against modern slavery. They help by making laws stronger, rescuing and supporting victims, and teaching people how to stay safe. It’s also important for everyone to know about the signs of slavery so they can help stop it.

What Can We Do?

There are things that even kids can do to help fight modern slavery. Learning about the issue and talking about it can make more people aware. Also, when buying things, it’s good to think about where they come from and if the people who made them were treated fairly. Supporting businesses that take care of their workers is another way to help.

Modern day slavery is a serious problem that hides in the shadows of our world. It’s about people who are not free to live their own lives. By understanding it and working together to stop it, we can make a big difference. Every person deserves to be free and treated with respect, and it’s up to us to help make that a reality.

That’s it! I hope the essay helped you.

If you’re looking for more, here are essays on other interesting topics:

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  1. Modern Slavery: Definition and Types

    Modern slavery directly refers to the institutional slavery that occurs in present-day society through forms of forced labour via coercion, the threat of violence, or debt bondage. Modern slavery is often synonymous with human trafficking in the discourse on the topic. Although trafficking implies transportation of humans, the legal definition ...

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    Modern slavery is manifested in such forms as human trafficking, being locked up in brothels and subjected to poor and inhumane working conditions in restaurants and many others. This shows that the modern forms of slavery are related to work. When an employer subjects an employee to some hard labor conditions without good pay, then this can be ...

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    Good slavery essays discuss the aspects and problems that are important and relevant today. Choose slavery essay topics that raise significant problems that remain acute in modern society. Slavery essay titles and topics may include: The problem of human trafficking in today's world.

  4. What is modern slavery?

    There are hundreds of definitions of modern slavery. All of these include aspects of control, involuntary actions and exploitation. At Anti-Slavery International, we define modern slavery as when an individual is exploited by others, for personal or commercial gain. Whether tricked, coerced, or forced, they lose their freedom.

  5. Slavery in the 21st century

    e. Contemporary slavery, also sometimes known as modern slavery or neo-slavery, refers to institutional slavery that continues to occur in present-day society. Estimates of the number of enslaved people today range from around 38 million [1] to 49.6 million, [2] [3] [4] depending on the method used to form the estimate and the definition of ...

  6. We need to change what people think modern slavery is

    Modern slavery and human trafficking are hidden crimes. Just over 2,000 victims were reported in the UK last year, but some estimates put the real figure as high as 13,000.

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  9. PDF Modern Slavery

    CALL FOR PAPERS 'Modern Slavery and the Employment Relationship: Defining the Continuum of Exploitation' Special Issue: Journal of Industrial Relations, Vol.64(2), April 2022 Special Issue Guest-Editors: Dr Martijn Boersma, University of Technology, Australia Prof Justine Nolan, University of New South Wales, Australia

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    Key Documents. Depending on the perspective, the concept of slavery is defined rather concisely or rather controversially. "More than 300 international slavery treaties have been signed since 1815, but they rarely used the same definition." (Bales 2005, p. 3, also cf. Skinner 2009, p.35) However, a short overview of the key documents shows that definitions of modern slavery did manage to ...

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    In conclusion, modern slavery is a serious problem that takes away people's freedom. By understanding and acting against it, we can help to free those who are trapped and build a world where everyone is treated fairly. 500 Words Essay on Modern Slavery What is Modern Slavery? Modern slavery is a serious problem in today's world.

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    Essays. Forms of Contemporary Slavery ... (Because of the hidden nature of modern slavery, it is difficult to determine precise numbers and data on modern slaves.) Persistent modern-day slavery covers a variety of human rights violations and includes the practices of child labor, bonded labor, serfdom, servile marriage, trafficking in persons ...

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    "Trafficking in persons," "human trafficking," and "modern slavery" are used as umbrella terms to refer to both sex trafficking and compelled labor. The Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (Pub. L. 106-386), as amended (TVPA), and the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, supplementing the United Nations Convention […]

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    1 December 2021 Human Rights. Women and children are at high risk of being pushed into contemporary forms of slavery, UN-appointed independent rights experts said on Wednesday. In an alert to coincide with the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery on 2 December, they warned that global challenges such as COVID-19, climate change and ...

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  17. Essay On Modern Slavery

    Essay On Modern Slavery. 852 Words4 Pages. Modern-slavery is a gargantuan part of the world today. Many people might not realise it, but it is everywhere. Slavery is a very complex issue that happens to adults, teenager, and even kids, and the horrific things that happen to them is not okay. Modern slavery includes three important points to ...

  18. Modern slavery: Conclusion

    Conclusion. Despite the abolition of slavery in the nineteenth century, the practice is prevalent in the contemporary world. It is estimated that more people are enslaved today than during the few centuries of the transatlantic slave trade. Modern slavery poses a serious challenge to human rights protection worldwide, and many governments as ...

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    The world needs a Five Eyes to fight modern slavery. Erbakit Ortabay, 49, an ethnic Kazakh born in Xinjiang, speaks to the Associated Press, in London, Thursday, Oct. 6, 2022. Ortabay said he was ...

  20. Human Trafficking and Modern Day Slavery Essay

    Every year, millions of people are trafficked into the modern-day equivalent of slavery. They are secretly transported across borders and sold like commodities, or trafficked within their countries for the sole purpose of exploitation. It is a crime that violates the basic human rights of victims. (What is Trafficking, 2010).

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    500+ Words Essay on Slavery. Slavery is a term that signifies the injustice that is being carried out against humans since the 1600s. Whenever this word comes up, usually people picture rich white people ruling over black people. However, that is not the only case to exist. After a profound study, historians found evidence that suggested the ...

  22. Essay on Modern Day Slavery

    250 Words Essay on Modern Day Slavery What is Modern Day Slavery? Modern day slavery is a serious problem where people are trapped, controlled, and forced to work with no freedom. It's like the old slavery, but it's hidden and happens today. People are treated as objects, not humans, and are often scared or unable to ask for help. ...

  23. (PDF) Modern Slavery & Human Trafficking (2020)

    Siobhan Standaert. Rachel Kyes. Olivia Dudley. Alyssa Hurst. View. Sean Mennim. PDF | On Jan 1, 2020, Ronald Weitzer published Modern Slavery & Human Trafficking (2020) | Find, read and cite all ...

  24. Modern Slavery in Business: The Sad and Sorry State of a Non-Field

    The limited quality and quantity of business and management research on the topic of modern slavery belies its potential relevance to a wide range of business and management disciplines, from SCM to human resource management (HRM) and organizational behavior through to finance, accounting, strategy, and marketing.