How To Become A Slave

There are two basic ways of making slaves: suddenly, as when Caesar conquered Gaul so as to sell its population at a profit, when Africans sold their neighbours literally down the river, or when the Nazis and Soviets impressed their undesirables into labour camps; and gradually, as in the creeping enserfment of once-free farmers. The point is that the servant, the person who does the work for you, should be as much as possible in your power, and there are subtler ways of achieving that unfreedom and control than knocking him over the head and marching him away in a coffle. The century promises to show how this can be done gradually and within the framework of a modern economy.

There have been “waves” of serfdom before. Here we think of the early middle ages in Western Europe, and the early modern period in Eastern Europe. The second wave took place long after feudalism had died in the West, and suggests that an aristocracy can quite easily reduce free labour to slavery even if they are competing with a more “enlightened” and supposedly more efficient socio-economic model just next door. This being so, a third wave of enserfment in the twenty-first century does not seem quite so improbable.

Posted on May 15, 2012 at 11:28 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink
In: THE ENSLAVING MAMMAL, From Free To Unfree Labour

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  1. Written by urban
    on May 15, 2012 at 12:56

    Not improbable at all. Indeed, for the vast majority avoiding that fate seems pretty far-fetched.

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