@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez more that they had the existing toolkit from their Iberian experiences (Portuguese were the first to really engage in the African trade) and quickly applied them in Africa
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez Consider two examples:

The pre-Columbian conquest of the Canary Islands by the Spanish, taking place over one century beginning in the 14th and through the 15th century.

The indigenous peoples of the Canaries were promptly seen as slaving prospects
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez Not Muslim, the indigenous peoples of the Canaries were descended from Berbers with their own indigenous religion. Rather than view them as prospects for conversion, they were immediately seen as targets for expropriation and enslavement
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez Actually I should clarify, that's not quite right. Bishoprics were established on the islands from the mid-14th century. So they were indeed targets for conversion.

What I mean to say is, not like the conversion of the Slavs centuries earlier liberating them from slavery
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez They openly considered the indigenous people of the Canaries (the Gaunches) basically animals who couldn't be converted to "civilization" or Christianity without enslavement. Sub-Saharan slaves were also brought to the Canaries by the 15th century, probably Pre-Columbian
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez this is from Blackburn "The Making of New World Slavery"
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez So, using the political tools of Papal authority to conquer, developed from the Crusades, they conquered and converted while also employing the dehumanizing logic of racism to render these people "animals", subhuman, and therefore enslaveable despite Christian identity
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez I would thus argue that, yes, the Iberians were indeed employing race-thinking against the inhabitants of Africans on the Atlantic coast and archipelagos from the jump, even pre-Columbus.

They were enslaved on sugar plantations, presaging new world slave economies
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez The other obvious example is the Portuguese interaction with Kongo. The Kings of Kongo converted to Catholicism quite quickly, and by the early 1500s Alfonso I (even taking a Portuguese name) was an ardent convert who corresponded regularly with Portugal and the Vatican
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez He attempted vigorously to convert the populace of Kongo, and over time his relationship with Portugal deteriorated due to the slave trade's deleterious effect on Kongo. He tried to end the trade, appealing both to the Pope and the king of Portugal
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez The Portuguese nonetheless subverted him, threatened him with sanctions, and forced the continuation of the trade. He remained committed to ending it, culminating in an assassination attempt (failed) but the Portuguese on Alfonso in 1540
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez This king, this CATHOLIC KING, the Portuguese tried to assassinate ON EASTER SUNDAY. Not the state, either, but private adventurers.

This would be intolerable within the politics of Europe, but for an African king....
@plumesofhappy @ryangrim @lhfang @aidachavez As you can see, race thinking was alive and well among the Iberians trading in slaves with Sub-Saharan kingdoms, even when those kingdoms converted to Catholicism, adopted European languages, regularly corresponded with European monarchs and popes in written letters

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More from @thucydiplease

25 Sep
It’s weird how much class reductionists, who claim to be pure materialists, who reject frou-frou “idpol” as having explanatory power, also love the Deaths of Despair thesis about rise in white deaths to suicide, drugs, alcohol.

”Despair” doesn’t seem super materialist to me?
The whole Deaths of Despair thesis is mostly crap analysis anyway.

It counts deaths by suicide, alcohol, and drugs as all caused by “despair”, which presumably is caused by neoliberalism, I guess?

But almost all the rise in this meta-category is due to drugs, mainly opioids
For one thing, if it were purely despair, as a proxy for neoliberal economic policy, why is the rise in these deaths so wildly lopsidedly due to one factor? The change in the other two doesn’t even come close!
Read 45 tweets
24 Sep
What’s amazing about this is that so many white people are essentially willing to accept some percentage of white people—even white children—as the necessary collateral damage to maintain a white supremacist police state.
Whiteness has always been Moloch, a blood-drinking god that requires the offering of innocent lives in exchange for power—even from among the group that has entered into the covenant with this cannibal god
White supremacy has never involved a truly universal solidarity among whites—that’s merely a lie used to sell it. Some whites have always been cast from our own Mount Taygetus, deemed unfit, too feeble and burdensome to share in the largesse of mass expropriation
Read 7 tweets
24 Sep
The thing about the similarity between now and the 1850s isn’t just superficial similarity.

We literally have many of the *same institutions* which precipitated the first crisis: the Electoral College, the Senate, and the Supreme Court.
We’re not just talking about “oh don’t these kind of seem similar?” It’s literally the same country with the same anti-democratic political institutions that set the stage for the same sort of fight over political legitimacy to happen again. We never fixed them!
These institutions have always made it possible for a minority party to seize, maintain, and even expand political control—which inevitably has to be justified by seeming the majoritarian opposition as inherently illegitimate political actors
Read 7 tweets
24 Sep
in the 1850s you had an increasingly marginal voting bloc of pro-slavery whites, concentrated in a party dedicated to white supremacy as its first priority, who used the electoral college and Supreme Court and the senate to maintain a death grip on power despite being a minority
Then they lose a presidential election for the first time EVER in which not a single slave state voted for the winner. Even if their didn’t always win, it was understood that any president would need at least some slave state support
They expected to have veto power, and when they didn’t, despite losing fair and square, they decided everyone on the other side was not a legitimate political actor and you know what happens next
Read 5 tweets
21 Sep
Actually Marx would be a chaser, but in like a chill respectful way
You’re telling me this dude, a drunk dirtbag who loved to party, who was famously horny for MAIDS, wouldn’t have have been subscribed to like 15 tgirl and femboy OnlyFans pages? Image
If Marx was alive today most orthodox Marxists would look at his personal life and call him a degenerate. The fantasy they have of him as some stoic Teutonic ascetic is insane. He was a horny slob with ADHD
Read 5 tweets
15 Sep
When I say that racial caste, race-thinking, white supremacy predate capitalism and were in fact emergent from feudalism in a way that helped *prompt* the transition to capitalism and thereby *shaped* capitalism, this is the kind of stuff I'm talking about.

Racism in 1436
Spanish enslavement of indigenous peoples nearly 60 years before Columbus enslaved the Taino people. Even longer before they brought the first African slaves to the new world or enslaved the Inca to mine silver at Potosi
The fact that these people were converted to Christianity did not liberate them; we had by this point already moved beyond the idea of Christianity--a mutable identity that people could adopt--was the basis for humanity, for being unenslaveable
Read 6 tweets

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