The paper proposed aims to analyze the slavery legislation born between the fifteenth and nineteenth centuries, the so-called Black Codes laws—enacted in all the greatest colonial powers of the Old Continent—which regulated life and transportation of slaves in the colonies. Spain, Portugal, England and France, between the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, created legislative codes dedicated to the slave’s management in the colonies, which regulated all aspects of their life: from religion to marriage, from cohabitation to imprisonment, from crimes to corporal punishment. Particularly widespread in the Caribbean colonies of the seventeenth century, these slave laws were soon in force in almost all American colonies of European monarchies, forming the legal basis on which the slave societies of the European empires were founded. In the wake of the Spanish, Portuguese, English and French slave codes, even states that had a marginal role in the process of overseas colonization enacted similar slave codes. It was the case, for example, of Denmark and Sweden that in the management of some of their ultramarine possessions adopted slave codes inspired by those of the greatest colonizing powers.
Part of the book: Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking