Slavery can be defined as the forced servitude of a person. In the United States, slavery as an institution ended in 1865 with the conclusion of the Civil War. Other countries ended slavery earlier or later than did the United States, and today, no country officially permits slavery. Slavery-like practices, however, still continue in parts of the world, and the effects of prior slavery represent current corporate responsibility issues for many companies. Finally, the idea of slavery is sometimes used as a metaphor by activists to criticize particular labor practices of companies and their suppliers.

It might seem strange to include an entry on slavery in this Encyclopedia. Slavery is often thought of as a long-ended practice relegated to history. But there are still slaves, people ...

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