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Slavery

(4,377 words)

Author(s): Heesch, Matthias | Kessler, Rainer | Harrill, J. Albert | Luker, Ralph E. | Ludwig, Frieder
[German Version] I. General The word slavery denotes a social structure (including its normative legal and ethical standards) in which certain individuals are considered and treated as objects. A slave owner has the right to decide what the slaves do, as well as where and how they live; the owner also has an absolute right of disposition over their bodies and lives and the right to sell them like any other property. The far-reaching implications of this definition distinguish slavery from other forms of unfreedom such as debt servitude, serfdom, and bondage. Slavery was widespread in a…