Chains of Reselling: Reconsidering Slave Dealings Based on Slaves’ Own Voices
This chapter examines the details of slave dealings. The actual condition of slave dealings in the western Indian Ocean remains largely unknown regardless of the particular period. This chapter tackles this issue by using the accounts of slaves themselves. The chapter shows how slave dealings in this region were widespread not only in the geographical but also a class or status sense—a good number of non-professionals engaged with the trade in some way. Slaves also often experienced what the author calls a ‘chain of reselling’. In other words, purchasers tended not to keep slaves for very long, instead trading them relatively quickly, so slaves were frequently resold. The chapter further analyses the contemporary situation of slave dealing as well as cultural background of this phenomenon.