Black people or blacks is a racial, political, sociological or cultural classification of people. No people are literally black, but many people who have dark skin color are considered black. A variety of sociopolitical and biological factors are used to define categories of black people.
Some assert that only people of relatively recent African descent are black, while others argue that black may refer to individuals with dark skin color regardless of ethnic origin, e.g. the native populations of Australia, Melanesia, and certain cultures within India.
Through to the institution of slavery, over the course of centuries, blacks were taken from Africa and brought to the Americas, including North and South America and the Caribbean, where they were used as unskilled and disposable manpower for menial work.
In the United States, the institution of slavery proved to be a substantial wedge in the country, as the northern states gradually outlawed slavery, while many states in the south fought for its continued existence. The conflict eventually left the political arena and became a factor in the armed conflict that began in 1861.
As a consequence of the American Civil War, slavery was ended and blacks became American citizens. However, the process painful, and the rights of citizenship were not equally extended and uniformly enforced.
Black people in Atlantis
Blacks, along with Terranovan copperskins, were the unfortunate victims of European chattel slavery from the sixteenth century through the nineteenth century in Atlantis. The economies of French and Spanish Atlantis were particularly dependent on slave-based agriculture. In spite of this, blacks and copperskins rebelled at almost any available opportunity; one black slave, Blaise, escaped from French Atlantis and became a trusted advisor to Victor Radcliff.
Black uprisings remained a constant fear for European colonists in Atlantis. A particularly brutal slave uprising in Spanish Atlantis paralyzed the already feeble Spanish effort against Britain during a mid 18th century global conflict. When the war was over, French Atlantis was annexed to Britain's holdings.
A generation later, the Atlantean War of Independence successfully saw the establishment of the United States of Atlantis as a new country, independent of Britain. The fate of blacks, however, was left unaddressed upon independence, with the various states of what had been French Atlantis continuing the practice of slavery. Not much later, the United States of Atlantis acquired Spanish Atlantis, increasing the number of enslaved blacks within its borders.
Slave uprisings continued throughout the remainder of the 18th and 19th Centuries. In 1852, the Atlantean Servile Insurrection began in the state of New Marseille. The Insurrection, led by Frederick Radcliff, a black slave and illegitimate grandson of Victor Radcliff, in short order ended slavery as an institution in Atlantis, freeing both blacks and copperskins, and elevating them to full-fledged citizens of the country.
Black people in A Different Flesh
A prevailing European and American social doctrine in the 17th and 18th centuries, held that black people were inferior to whites. This was used to justify enslaving these people, however they were usually given less arduous work than were the non-human sims. In 1804, Virginia lawyer Alfred Douglas spoke out about the foolishness of it, by demonstrating that a black man was the intellectual equal of whites, and that humans of both colors possessed a capacity which the sims never could. The existence of this other species, which truly was inferior, shattered any credibility in the doctrine of the inferiority of blacks.
Black people in The Disunited States of America
In an alternate in which the United States failed, the enslavement of black people in the states ended in the 19th and 20th centuries. However, it was replaced in many states by a rigid social and racial hierarchy that kept blacks beneath whites, except in Mississippi, where the situation was reversed in the 1970s. There were two black revolts in Virginia prior to 2097. They became known as the First and Second Black Insurrections. A similar insurrection was sponsored by Ohio to weaken Virginia during the Ohio-Virginia War of 2097.
Black people in The Guns of the South
The white-supremacist Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging of South Africa sought a restoration of apartheid and the suppression of blacks globally, and took the drastic step of traveling back in time to alter the course of the American Civil War, allowing the Confederacy to win the Second American Revolution.
However, many Confederate leaders became uncomfortable with slavery, and grew angered by the time travelers' insistence in meddling in the country's destiny. After a bloody conflict in which the time travelers were defeated and expelled or captured, the CSA introduced legislation to end slavery.
Black people in "He Woke in Darkness"
After he helped murder three civil rights workers in 1964, Cecil Price had a recurring nightmare for the remainder of his life. In this nightmare, black people dominated the hierarchy of Mississippi. Price was recast in the role of an oppressed white field hand. Further, in his nightmare, he and two Black Muslims from the north, Muhammad Shabazz and Tariq Abdul-Rashid, were waylaid in Mississippi and murdered by racist law enforcement officials and members of the Black Knights of Voodoo, much as Price had helped waylay and arrange the murder of the three civil rights workers by members of the Ku Klux Klan.
Black people in In the Presence of Mine Enemies
As part of the racist ideologies of the Nazi-dominated Greater German Reich, blacks along with Jews, Slavs and Arabs were considered Untermenschen. Following the Axis victory in Second World War, the Reich and its ally the Italian Empire launched a genocide against blacks in Africa as part of the Holocaust with the surviving populations being used as slave labor.
During the Third World War between the Reich and Japan against the United States (which had remained neutral in the Second World War), blacks and Jews in the United States were subjected to racial genocide, the same fate suffered by European Jews and Arabs in the Italian Empire.
Black people in "Must and Shall"
In the aftermath of the Great Rebellion, the United States government enacted legislation that ensured black people were elevated above the status of slaves in the former Confederacy and at the top of the Federally enforced hierarchy. This included the passage of the Sixteenth Amendment, which stripped the rebellious white leaders and their descendants of the right to vote. Life was generally good for blacks in this time period, but they lived with a specter of the possibility that Federal protection might someday be revoked, leaving them at the mercy of an angry, violent white population.
Black people in Southern Victory
The War of Secession was fought from 1861-2 between the United States and the Confederate States. The Confederate States sought to preserve the institution of slavery and the oppression of blacks in North America. The Confederate States won the war and were free to continue their practice of slavery.
Slavery was continued in the Confederate States through the Second Mexican War. In 1881, President James Longstreet promised to introduce and support a constitutional amendment banning slavery after the war's successful conclusion. As a result, Britain and France entered an alliance with the Confederate States and helped knock the United States out of the war.
While slaves were technically free, they were not able to become citizens since the Confederate States was founded on racist policies including the preservation of slavery. Though they composed a third of the population of the Confederate States, blacks suffered severe discrimination in society including doing the most menial and unskilled of work, being forced to carry passbooks and were segregated from the richer whites. Blacks were even forbidden from having surnames, except in the unusually permissive state of Cuba. Most were named after important figures from antiquity, and the names were usually Greek, Latin, Hebrew, or from one of the other cultures mentioned in the Bible.
Tensions between blacks and whites in the Deep South continued into the 20th century. Many blacks also became influenced by the socialism advocated by Karl Marx and Abraham Lincoln. During the Great War (1914-1917), the Confederate States joined the Entente which consisted of Britain, France and Russia while the United States along with Germany, Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire formed the Central Powers.
With the Confederates' manpower concentrated against the United States, several blacks seized this as the chance to free themselves from their white oppressors. During the ensuing Red Rebellion (1915-16), black socialists revolted against the Confederate government and attempted to form several socialist republics in the South including the Congaree Socialist Republic and the Black Belt Socialist Republic. With the help of the US, the rebellion became a major problem, diverting precious Confederate manpower and resources, including units from the frontlines, to the crush the fledging republics. However, things grew so dire for the C.S. in the closing days of 1916 that then President Gabriel Semmes opened the Army to black enlistment, offering full citizenship to those who served. Many blacks happily accepted the opportunity to fight for their country. It wasn't enough for the C.S. to prevail. In 1917, the C.S. sued for peace, and suffered territorial and financial indemnities to the triumphant U.S.
With time, a myth of the black betrayal or "stab in the back" grew widespread in the C.S. While only 10% of the 10 million blacks in the Confederacy had been actually involved in the Red Rebellion, the total black population was eventually blamed for the rebellion and the Confederacy's defeat during the Great War, especially after the rise to power of the Freedom Party, which campaigned on an anti-black platform. The small amount of liberalization that the blacks had gained post-War of Secession was completely lost in the 1920s.
The post-war hate toward blacks led to the election of Jake Featherston to the presidency in 1933. The Freedom Party's policies included the "Population Reduction" of all blacks within the borders of the CS. Several concentration camps including Camp Determination, Camp Undecided and Camp Humble were established to kill large amounts of people in a short period of time. Indeed, even as the Second Great War was going poorly for the C.S. by 1943, Featherston insisted on allocating precious resources to continue genocide.
As this process began many blacks began to take arms once again, usually attacking in small raids and using guerrilla warfare. This fighting continued into the Second Great War. With the capture of Camp Determination by US Army general Abner Dowling in 1943 and the discovery of mass graves and other atrocities, more people became aware of the atrocities. While much of the US was indifferent to the plight of black people, knowledge of the Confederate's actions led to stirrings of outrage.
By the time the Confederate States fell, somewhere between six and 10 million blacks had been killed in the camps. Various survivors (guerrillas who'd fought back, families who'd fled, or were hidden by honorable whites) joined up with the US Army. The fighters became auxiliaries for the US Army (one of whom, Cassius, killed Jake Featherston), and the United States began a process of integration to insure the safety of the survivors. A booklet called Equality was distributed throughout the occupied CS to proclaim this purpose.
Black people in The Two Georges
The British Empire ended slavery in 1834, and black people were integrated into British society, often taking positions in civil service. By the late 20th century, a black man named Sir Martin Luther King was the Governor-General of the North American Union, a very critical and prestigious position.
Most blacks were staunch Tories, feeling a strong stake in the existing social and political system of the British Empire which had given them all they achieved.
The social success of the Blacks aroused envy and hatred among many of the far less successful Irish Americans.
Black people in Worldwar
During the Race's Conquest Fleet's invasion of Earth, the whole of Africa was conquered along with much of Asia, Latin America and Australia. Many black people became subjects to the Race. In some places, like South Africa, the black population eagerly sided with the Race, who found human classification based on skin color to be arbitrary. Indeed, many of the Race were more comfortable with darker skinned people of Earth.
In the United States, the Race armed black Americans with the hope that they would fight on the Race's behalf in the hope of receiving equitable treatment if the United States lost. While some did fight fiercely on the Race's behalf, most aligned themselves with the human race, however poorly their position in society would be. By the 1943, the United States Army had been effectively desegregated, if not legally so.
After the war prominent leaders such as Martin Luther King strove for equality of blacks in American society.
The success of the black struggle for equality was reflected in a Black officer being part of the crew of the Admiral Peary, the first American (and human) starship to set out for the Race's homeworld.
- Blonds (Detina): People in The War Between the Provinces Series whose role is partly based on the roles of African Americans.