Your Halloween Candy Has a Racist History

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tags: racism, Halloween

"Definitely there's a connection between the production of sugar cane and African slavery. They were inseparable," Philip Howard, a history professor at the University of Houston, who has written several books on sugar, told ATTN:. Sugar cane was a crucial cash crop for much of America's early years, and the mass harvesting of sugar helped fuel the Industrial Revolution and create modern capitalism, Howard said.

"Most of the African slaves that arrived in the Americas were imported to cut and haul sugar cane between 1550 and the time that it was abolished in the Americas," Howard said. That includes slaves sent to the United States, the Caribbean, Central America and South America. ...

Candy marketing targeted particular races, historian April Merleaux, author of "Sugar and Civilization," told NPR last year: Higher-priced, fancier candies were marketed to white Americans, while cheaper candies were marketed to poorer, often Black, Americans.

The association between Black sugar cane cultivators and candy became clear in advertising, and offensive Black stereotypes found their way into marketing materials. ...

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