Remember that Roman slaves were European and African and they were property until they could buy their freedom. In America you were born a slave. In the Dark ages of Europe and in Visogothic Spain, slaves were the result of debt, punishment, poverty; selling themselves or their children into bondage for a better life, slavery for food from merchants. But what was needed was to keep the preliterate in a delusional state of mind by continually reinforcing the concept of race, a human invention.
“The ideological justification of colonial conquest rested on the obliteration of past knowledge and understanding, ethnological perspective, and Arab voyagers. To appreciate this we needn’t go as far back as the legendary King Balthazar, one of the three visitors to Bethlehem during the Nativity. Philippe the I of France and William the Conqueror of England were, in fact, petty nobles compared with great King Tunka Menin of Ghana, who could deploy 40,000 archers in battle: Three centuries later, what European Monarch could match the economic clout of the Mansa of Mali, Kanka Musa, who flooded the market with enough gold to cause a twenty percent devaluation in the Egyptian dinar.”
How was it done? How did the idea come about that one race was superior to another?
“Johann Friedrich Blumenbach said in 1775 that racial biases in their beliefs tainted science. Letting their feelings get in the way of their thinking (reason) and the biases in his beliefs already confirmed what many Europeans already felt. It was easy to overlook his switch from thinking or feeling, because what he said sounded so good and felt so right. Blumenbach’s theory of race swept away all previous explanations of human difference and gave a new justification for ancient prejudices. He spoke in the voice of science, not the pride of the Sumerians, Greeks, or Romans or the belief in being special to the God of the Jews, Christians and Muslims. But all these deeper layers of feeling are there in his theory. Those like us, those we find beautiful, are superior. Those unlike us, those we find alien are inferior. Because “race” is presented as science, it silences objections based on feeling. And yet the idea itself is so powerful because it confirms our ancient sense that those who look different are alien, enemies, what the Munduruku call “Pariwat.”
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