Thompson’s Theory of Relationship Between Sanctions and Slavery

Recently I’ve been reading an autobiography by John Thompson, who was born a slave in Maryland, 1812. He was one of 7 children, and later in his life managed to escape slavery and become a free man.

Now Thompson was a Christian and did not hate slavery. What he did hate, however, was when owners abused their power and treated their slaves in an unjust manner. He believed that those who treated their slaves well were rewarded by God through prosperity and those who didn’t were punished. Thompson describes in his autobiography, that the owners who treated their slaves well, had much more co-operation with their slaves than those who didn’t.

I believe that this applies to our daily lives as well. For example, a Boss who treats his employees in an unjust manner, and makes everyone hate their job only gets those under him to perform as required. While a Boss who treats those under him well, and gets everyone to love their job manages to get high performance out of his employees. While positive sanctions usually achieve a much higher result, negative sanctions create tension and retaliation. I believe that this is Thompson’s perspective.

Thompson believed that treating slaves like actual people, and applying positive sanctions, they would, in turn, help you much more than if you applied negative sanctions without cause.

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