I have no faith in human perfectibility. I think that human exertion will have no appreciable effect upon humanity. Man is now only more active - not more happy - nor more wise, than he was 6000 years ago.
By Edgar Allan Poe (via the-memoirs-of-life)
Once they had a ship, the pirates elected their captains, and made all their decisions collectively. They shared their bounty out in what Rediker calls “one of the most egalitarian plans for the disposition of resources to be found anywhere in the 18th century.”
They even took in escaped African slaves and lived with them as equals. The pirates showed “quite clearly – and subversively – that ships did not have to be run in the brutal and oppressive ways of the merchant service and the Royal navy.” This is why they were popular, despite being unproductive thieves.
Oops, turns out piracy is pretty much always a term like terrorist that gets slapped on whatever we don’t like despite being a general reaction to the status quo. And nothing’s really changed.
And when african pirates were captured by the British they were forced into the slave trade.
They were generally democratic, disciplined, communal - they even had pensions! If you wanted out of the pirate life, you would be taken to a destination of your choice (anywhere in the world) and given a lump sum to help you with your new life.
Honor among thieves.
THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU YES i’ve spent like two years studying piracy (back when i had time to devote to reading and research) and yes pirates are actually all very interesting and democratic and great
Reblogging since someone recently sent me an ask on this topic (although now it appears to be lost somewhere in my inbox).