The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade: A Forgotten Crime Against Humanity as Defined by International Law

65 Pages Posted: 8 Apr 2013 Last revised: 14 May 2013

Date Written: 2004

Abstract

This essay examines the Trans-Atlantic slave trade with a particular focus on its legal, financial, and governmental aspects. The author argues that despite the brutal treatment that slaves endured, including death, the international community could not resist the economic possibilities of participation in the slave trade. In so arguing, the author discusses the historical beginnings of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade, and the involvement of many nation-states in the implementation of guidelines, statutes, contracts, and treaties authorizing the unprecedented exploitation of African peoples. The author concludes that the exploitation of Africans through the Trans-Atlantic slave trade constituted an international crime against humanity.

Keywords: Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade, crimes against humanity, historical injustices, international law, United Nations, Slavery Convention, human rights

JEL Classification: B25, K19, K33

Suggested Citation

Muhammad, Patricia M., The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade: A Forgotten Crime Against Humanity as Defined by International Law (2004). American University International Law Review, Vol. 19, No. 4, 2004, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2246842

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