Clinical Issues in Caring for Former Chattel Slaves
Over the centuries, slavery has become embedded into the social fabric of Mauritania with generations of abid and bizan (Mauritanian slaves and slave masters, respectively) born and raised knowing nothing but the institution of chattel slavery. Abid fleeing their station in Mauritania come to the USA with unique psychological needs that will affect all of their interactions with the medical community. This paper aims to assist health professionals and others concerned with the welfare of former chattel slaves in competently serving this vulnerable population. Discussion includes an overview of Mauritanian chattel slavery, deduced sequelae of chattel slavery, preliminary recommendations for mental health and medical treatment protocols, and suggestions for future research. A confidential Institutional Review Board (IRB)-approved case report will be used to illustrate these objectives.
KeywordsChattel slavery Mauritania Slave mentality Vulnerable patient population
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