Slavery in China

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Chinese slave

Slavery in the modern era affects millions in China. [1] Women and children are subject to sexual exploitation ,[1] such as through slavery within forced marriage.[1] The 2007 Chinese slave scandal involved thousands of slaves, including, thousands of children, who had gone missing and were forced to work in brickyards. [2] Slavery in China also includes domestic servitude and forced begging.[3]

History of slavery in China[edit]

During the Shang dynasty, about 5% of the population was enslaved.[4] During the Qin dynasty, male slaves were forced to labor on projects like the Terracotta Army. Some slaves were those who had been convicted of crimes such as rape and were castrated and enslaved as a result.[5][6] Emperor Wang Mang banned slavery, but this was repealed after his death.[7][8] During the Tang Dynasty, there was a shortage of women, which resulted in trade with Koreans for women. During the Ming dynasty, slavery was banned, but continued nevertheless.[9] However, in practice, slavery continued through the Ming dynasty.[9] The Qing dynasty initially saw an increase of slavery in China, though there were measures against slavery.


  1. ^ a b c
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  3. ^
  4. ^ Encyclopaedia Britannica, inc (2003). The New Encyclopaedia Britannica, Volume 27. Encyclopaedia Britannica. p. 289. ISBN 0-85229-961-3. Retrieved 2011-01-11. 
  5. ^ Bayerischen Landesamtes für Denkmalpflege (2001). Qin Shihuang. Bayerisches Landesamt für Denkmalpflege. p. 273. ISBN 3-87490-711-2. Retrieved 2011-01-11. 
  6. ^ Mark Edward Lewis (2007). The early Chinese empires: Qin and Han. Harvard University Press. p. 252. ISBN 0-674-02477-X. Retrieved 2011-01-11. 
  7. ^ Encyclopedia of Antislavery and Abolition. Greenwood Publishing Group. 2011. p. 155. ISBN 978-0-313-33143-5. 
  8. ^
  9. ^ a b Hallet, Nicole. "China and Antislavery". Encyclopedia of Antislavery and Abolition, Vol. 1, p. 154 – 156. Greenwood Publishing Group, 2007. ISBN 0-313-33143-X.

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