Compare the material and non-material conditions of slaves and of urban industrial workers. 

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It is difficult to untangle the rhetoric from the reality when it comes to analyzing the various work-patterns and arrangements in nineteenth century America, where the debate referenced in this question was most intense. It is also difficult to generalize about actual work conditions, which varied by occupation, by status, and according to other criteria, including the personality of the slave or business owner, local laws and customs, and other factors. 

Slaves were by legal definition chattel, meaning they were akin to livestock. This meant they could be bought and sold, and subjected to physical punishment, including, in some states, death. While masters could not arbitrarily murder slaves by law, most restrictions on their treatment of...

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