|Abolition of Slavery (Empire: Total War)|
|Research Points Needed|
|Building Needed||Modern University|
The abolition of slavery removes the right of one man to own another, and outlaws any trade in human beings as property.
The slave trade is hugely profitable for those who engage in it, whether through trade such as that from Africa to the New World, or conquest such as the depredations of European shipping by the Barbary Pirates of North Africa. The morality and necessity of slave owning, however, are disputed. Abolition of the trade has its roots in religious feelings and in radical Enlightenment thought, but its effects are clear: a cessation of slave taking, transportation and exploitation.
Historically, abolition was far from universally popular. William Wilberforce (1759-1833), the MP for Kingston-upon-Hull in Yorkshire, campaigned for many years in the face of bitter opposition from mercantile interests. His eventual success only outlawed slavery in British possessions and British involvement in any foreign trade. The Royal Navy acted as a “world policeman”, attempting to stop the African trade at source. Oddly, English judges had already decided that slaves could become free by stepping onto English soil in 1772. Wilberforce’s work was the start of a process that continues even today with attempts to stop “people trafficking”.
Depending on government type, Abolition of Slavery increases happiness of lower classes by 4 (Republic), decreases happiness of upper classes by 4 (Constitutional Monarchy), or does both (Absolute Monarchy). While it generates an increase to town wealth growth, it also makes constructing plantations significantly more expensive.
As it is researched so far down the Philosophy tree, Abolition of Slavery may be invaluable in keeping the lower orders appeased, as by then clamour for reform may be otherwise unmanageable.