African-Americans: Anthropological Survey of Tradition, Culture Essay

Pages: 2 (590 words)  ·  Style: MLA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Black Studies

African-Americans: Anthropological Survey of Tradition, Culture, And Habits

African-Americans are often perceived as possessing a unique social status in American history. Although America is a nation of immigrants, African-Americans are the only immigrants who were forcibly migrated to the nation as slaves. Unlike white indentured servants, African-Americans were turned into a deliberately enslaved caste of people, identified by their perceived 'race.' Unlike other immigrant groups who formed ethnic enclaves in urban locations, African-American's cultural affiliations with their various original African lands were deliberately destroyed, in an effort to make their enslavement more manageable for their 'owners.' Africans appropriated European Christianity, songs, and other cultural norms as vehicles of liberation and formed a unique culture that has been called the only truly 'American' culture.

Slavery was present in all of early America, but it became a particularly entrenched institution in the South, where prejudice and discrimination against African-Americans became a source of self-definition for many whites. With the invention of the cotton gin, slavery also became wildly profitable, and the nation was torn asunder, at least in part, because of conflicts over slavery.Download full Download Microsoft Word File
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The enslaved status of African-Americans was a profound challenge to the notion of America as place of justice liberty. African-Americans, from slavery onward would stress the hypocrisy between the American ideal of freedom and democracy for all, and their inability to enjoy such institutions. Even after formal emancipation, African-Americans continued to experience discrimination in the north and south. African-American schools were segregated, either by law or because of where African-Americans were forced to live, and this resulted in fewer opportunities and reduced economic power in the rapidly industrializing nation. The African-American family had often been separated, due to slavery, and many families were broken once again as fathers were forced to leave and… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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