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Slave and servant genes.

  1. Jul 30, 2012 #1
    Slave and "servant" genes.

    I've been reading about the shocking conditions experience by forced or "tricked" early settlers into Australia and the USA. They were more or less all slaves or experienced similar conditions.

    Aside from the initial journey, which would have killed anyone weak, or with a weak immune system there was seasoning, followed by a brutal 7 years of constant work, beatings and diseases.

    There must have been an element of natural selection which may not be evident in the current day populations but may well have been evident back then. I will mention that even if you were not a slave or servant, mortality rates on these journeys were still high.

    I can't see how, with >50% (and lets face it likely as records back then weren't the best) of your population selected in this way (if you were not strong you just died) that there was no lasting impact on the gene pool.

    I'd like to highlight, without having to write it down that the condition's experienced by servants and slaves were as horrendous as anything experienced by humans on this earth ever.

    What do the forum scientists have to say ?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 30, 2012 #2


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    Re: Slave and "servant" genes.

    I don't know if any studies have been done to look for evidence of such selection, but one issue that would arise in such a study would be the difficulty of distinguishing genes enriched by selection versus genes enriched by chance through the Founder effect.
  4. Aug 9, 2012 #3
    Re: Slave and "servant" genes.

    My dad was telling me about a tv show he watched recently about Michael Johnson, an American sprinter, who traced his ancestry but particularly from the perspective of why African Americans are such fantastic runners and he touched on something like this. I don't know how scientific it was since I didn't watch it myself.

    I bet at this point a huge number of Americans and Australians probably have slave genes in the, since the population has increased so much from a relatively small base number. There were a huge number of slaves from every part of the world they could take them from, they didn't care what race you were yet.

    This is very un-related but I read a report before saying there are more slaves on earth now than ever before in history, (but a smaller percentage of the population) and even a few years ago the police found a farm in England where these people had kidnapped homeless people and forced them to work as slaves.

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