African American Politics
23 September 2013
Slavery: America vs. Brazil
Slaves in America arrived in the same way that slaves in Brazil arrived. Packed like sardines on a ship set to sail to the New World. As the years went by and slavery continued to plague both countries, revolts were planned and slaves fought hard for their freedom. By the nineteenth century both countries abolished slavery. However, was slavery really abolished, or was it just the physical aspect of slavery? In the words of Bob Marley, he sings “emancipate yourself from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our mind” and while it may seem odd that someone could be mentally enslaved, it all starts to make sense when you take into account how Afro’s are treated by their society. They are stamped with a stigma never to be removed because of their past, a past that society wants them to put away and forget. Today, in society most people refer to American as a post-racial society and to Brazil as a racial democracy, suggesting that all labels of slavery and why Afro’s were enslaved is now all behind us. If we take a closer look, it is apparent that the ties of slavery are still following Afro’s today whether in the United States of America or in Brazil.
Despite attempts to eliminate racism from the public discourse, it is very much prominent in both American and Brazilian society. Although slavery has been abolished in both countries for more than a hundred years, the chains of bondage are still evident in every Afro’s everyday life. Whether it comes in the form of discrimination, prejudice or just down right racism, it is still happening today in 2013. The terms post-racism and racial democracy suggests that racism is no longer an issue today in our society, however everyday injustices proves those theories wrong. The only way for America or Brazil to be either post-racial or a racial democracy is if both countries identify that they are neither of those...