Africa, the arrival of Europeans and the transatlantic slave trade

Oldham Debate: the horrors by Dr Alan Rice

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Dr Alan Rice talks about the horrors of slavery - and the numbers of African people enslaved.

12 million Africans are estimated to have been exported from Africa.  It is estimated that another third died being marched to the coast or held in the slave forts.  Over a million died on board slaving ships.

Although Alan Rice does not call slavery the African holocaust, he can find parallels. An enslaved African was handed over for human experimentation - a live dissection was carried out to see how deep the black of his skin went down. William Grimes survived and escaped slavery and recorded his experiences in his autobiography.

Hitler's ideas of race may have emerged from slavery.

He ends with a presentation of cotton statistics. In 1790 there were 700,000 enslaved Africans in the Americas. By the 1860s there were 4 million enslaved Africans in the southern states of the USA because of the demand for cotton in Lancashire - which made its wealth.

Filmed at Gallery Oldham on 29 March 2008.