Guest Author - Rebecca Graf
Even science chimed in on the topic in various publications including that of Dr. John H. Van Evrie. In “Negroes and Negro ‘Slavery’”, he examined the “specific character of the Negro” by “stripping off the skin of the negro” and proving him to be a “different and inferior species of man.” He starts by comparing men and women and how a woman might have many characteristics similar to a man but it does not make her man. Thus a Negro might have many characteristics to that of the white man but it does not make him the same species. He proceeds to explain the physical differences as well as the mental and social from the size of the Negro’s brain to that of how they live in their native lands. He stimulates that slavery is a blessing to the African as it takes a species from its lower level society and moves it where it has advantages it never would be able to achieve on its own. This was the stance that many scientists took and printed in order to sway the public to the belief of slavery benefits.
Some did not see the African as born inferior as one who developed as a race needing guidance. James Hunt stated after his own research that “in the Negro there appears to be an arrested development of the mind exactly harmonizing with the physical formation. Young Negro children are nearly as intelligent as European children; but the older they grow the less intelligent they become.” The differences between the African and those of Europe were stressed to be the reasons for their inferiority and position as slave to the white man.
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