What is slavery?

  • (noun): The state of being under the control of another person.
    Synonyms: bondage, thrall, thralldom, thraldom
    See also — Additional definitions below


Slavery is a system under which people are treated as property to be bought and sold, and are forced to work. Slaves can be held against their will from the time of their capture, purchase or birth, and deprived of the right to leave, to refuse to work, or to demand compensation. Historically, slavery was institutionally recognized by many societies; in more recent times slavery has been outlawed in most societies but continues through the practices of debt bondage, indentured servitude, serfdom, domestic servants kept in captivity, certain adoptions in which children are forced to work as slaves, child soldiers, and forced marriage. There are more slaves in the early 21st century than at any previous time but opponents hope slavery can be eradicated within 30 years.

Read more about Slavery.

Some articles on slavery:

Slavery In Canada
... Slavery in what now comprises Canada existed into the 1830's, when slavery was officially abolished ... Slavery which was practiced within Canada's current geography, was practiced primarily by Aboriginal groups ... and the later British North America (see chattel slavery) during the 17th century, but large-scale plantation slavery of the sort that existed in most European colonies in the Americas, from New ...
Slave And Free States - End of Slave States
... Missouri, Tennessee, the new state of West Virginia, and the District of Columbia prohibited slavery before the Civil War ended ... However, in Delaware, New Jersey, and Kentucky, slavery continued to be legal until the 13th Amendment to the United States Constitution abolished slavery throughout the United States in December 1865, ending the ...
Turning Point Of The American Civil War - Union Victory in Battle of Antietam (September 1862)
... The British public had strong anti-slavery beliefs and would not have tolerated joining the pro-slavery side of a fight where slavery was now a prominent issue ...
François-André Isambert - Abolition of Slavery
... In the painting of the 1840 Anti-Slavery convention there is a figure to the left described as "M.M.Isambert" and in the centre is John Scoble the secretary of the British Anti-Slavery group ...

More definitions of "slavery":

  • (noun): The practice of owning slaves.
    Synonyms: slaveholding
  • (noun): Work done under harsh conditions for little or no pay.

Famous quotes containing the word slavery:

    The parallel between antifeminism and race prejudice is striking. The same underlying motives appear to be at work, namely fear, jealousy, feelings of insecurity, fear of economic competition, guilt feelings, and the like. Many of the leaders of the feminist movement in the nineteenth-century United States clearly understood the similarity of the motives at work in antifeminism and race discrimination and associated themselves with the anti slavery movement.
    Ashley Montagu (b. 1905)

    There is but little virtue in the action of masses of men. When the majority shall at length vote for the abolition of slavery, it will be because they are indifferent to slavery, or because there is but little slavery left to be abolished by their vote. They will then be the only slaves. Only his vote can hasten the abolition of slavery who asserts his own freedom by his vote.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)

    ... no one who has not been an integral part of a slaveholding community, can have any idea of its abominations.... even were slavery no curse to its victims, the exercise of arbitrary power works such fearful ruin upon the hearts of slaveholders, that I should feel impelled to labor and pray for its overthrow with my last energies and latest breath.
    Angelina Grimké (1805–1879)