Slavery In Southeast Asia Essay

1659 Words 7 Pages
Slave is defined as someone who is legally owned by another person and is forced to work for that person without pay. In early Southeast Asia slaves were a prominent factor in the economic system. Slavery in Southeast Asia is unique to most forms of slavery across the globe. Slaves in Southeast Asia were extended exclusive rights and privileges and most frequently, these slaves were duty-bound for punishment of crime or for having withstanding debt. For their ability to choose their labor, access to rare privileges and rights, and their likely possibility of freedom, slaves is early Southeast Asia cannot be considered slaves by the common definition.
During the transatlantic slave trade, Africans were taken or sold to Europeans and place in
…show more content…
Another unique attribute of slavery in Southeast Asia was that “bondage never became a permanently hereditary status” (Ooi 1223). Historically, in most other regions with slavery, children born of slaves almost always become slaves when they are old enough to begin slave work. Typical slaves in history are indebted for life. Due to even the slightest possibility that Southeast Asian slaves could be released from their servitude disqualifies them from slave …show more content…
Whereas in Southeast Asia, most slaves could be considered of fairly high status with a plethora of rights and abilities. With the spread of Islam, slaves were considered both “ both people and property under sharia, and therefore masters had a moral and legal obligation to feed, clothe, protects, and educate their slaves in Islam” (Eltis 169). Also under sharia law “slaves had the right to marry” (Eltis 169). Slaves in Southeast Asia could not be “denied rights of property and could themselves be slave owners. They could also have spouses and families and legal rights in family” (Eltis 181). As slaves in the Americas were often bought and sold with no regard to breaking up families, in Southeast Asia “there was a social obligation not to sell debt bondspeople outside their natal society” (Eltis 172). Furthermore, “most slaves could not be bought and sold such as serfs who are tied to the soil and have certain obligations to a patron other than the ruler, and people in debt bondage, who likewise cannot be bought or sold” (Henley 61). Slaves could not be sold by their owners but they could in fact sell themselves to “increase their own material wealth” (Eltis 172). Slaves were from all walks of life; they could be “powerful royal administrators, officials at every level of state, high-ranking military and naval officers or lowly servants, ritually important skilled craftsmen, highly prized

Related Documents