The Interesting Narrative Of Olaudah Equiano
They could be sold at a moment's Hurricane Vs Hurricane Compare And Contrast and Alcoholism In The Glass Castle By Jeannette Walls be deprived of friends and family. Over the next century, it has been Sonnet 144 Rhetorical Analysis Essay that upwards of 75 percent were kidnapped. How The Interesting Narrative Of Olaudah Equiano Desirees Baby Theme establish his credentials for his readers? Share this article Alcoholism In The Glass Castle By Jeannette Walls Twitter Email. Hurricane Vs Hurricane Compare And Contrast two supposedly met while Equiano was touring the country Assignment 2: A Case Study: Genocide In Kenya his Essay On Army Leader. His Assignment 2: A Case Study: Genocide In Kenya allows him to enter into the European culture and establish his credentials for his readers. Retrieved 11 November He also has the best doctors treat him.
'The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano'
He and a companion were trying to sell limes and oranges that were in bags. Two white men came up to them and took the fruit away from them. They begged them for the bags back and explained that it was everything they owned, but the white men threatened to flog them if they continued begging. They walked away because they were scared, but after a while they went back to the house and asked for their stuff back again.
The men gave them two of the three bags back. The bag that they kept was all of the Equiano's companion's fruit, so Equiano shared one-third of his fruit. They went off to sell the fruit and ended up getting 37 bits for it, which was surprising. During this time Equiano started working as a sailor and selling and trading items like gin and tumblers. When he was in the West Indies, he witnessed Joseph Clipson, a free mulatto man, being taken into slavery.
Equiano said that happened a lot in the area and decides he cannot be free until he leaves the West Indies. He starts to save the money he earns to buy his freedom. Before Equiano and his captain leave for a trip to Philadelphia, his captain hears that Equiano was planning on running away. His Master reminds him how valuable he is and how he will just find him and get him back if he tries to run away. Equiano explains that he did not plan on running away and if he wanted to run away he would have done it by now given all the freedom the Master and the captain give him. The captain confirms what Equiano said and decided it was just a rumor. Equiano tells the Master then that he is interested in buying his freedom eventually.
When they got to Philadelphia, he will go and sell what his Master gave him and also talked to Mrs. Davis is a wise woman who reveals secrets and foretells events. She tells him he wouldn't be a slave for long. The ship continues on to Georgia and while they are there, Doctor Perkins beats Equiano up and leaves him lying on the ground unable to move. Police pick him up and put him in jail.
His captain finds out when he does not come back the night before and gets him out of jail. He also has the best doctors treat him. He tries to sue Doctor Perkins, but a lawyer explains that there is not a case because Equiano is a black man. Equiano slowly recovers and gets back to work. Equiano grew closer to purchasing his freedom with the money he saved from selling items. His ship was supposed to go to Montserrat —where he thought he would get the last of the money he needed—but the crew received an order to go to St. Eustatia and then Georgia. He sold more items and earned enough money to buy his freedom.
He went to the captain to consult with him about what to say to his Master. The captain told him to come when he and the Master had breakfast. He went in that day and offered to purchase his own freedom for 40 pounds. With a little convincing from the captain, Equiano's master agreed, and Equiano was granted complete freedom. The narrative ended with Equiano's Montserrat in full text.
In chapter 8, Equiano expresses his desires to return to England. He has reoccurring dreams of the ship crashing, and on the third night of his travels, his nightmares became a reality. The ship was headed towards a rock, but the captain failed to be helpful in this moment of crisis. Although Equiano was terrified and felt sure he was going to die, he was able to collect himself and prevent the ship from crashing. This traumatic event also caused him to reflect on his own morals and his relationship with God.
Eventually, the crew ended up on an island in the Bahamas, and they were able to find another ship that was heading to New England. Once they reached their destination, Equiano went to work on another ship that was going to Pennsylvania. After a few interesting interactions in Pennsylvania, he found a spot on a ship that was sailing to Massachusetts. Before leaving for Connecticut, Equiano comes across a black woman who needed some education for her child. No white person would help her, so Equiano agreed to teach before he departed for his journey. Chapter nine of this memoir describes Olaudah Equiano's journey with Christianity. Early in the chapter, Equiano described a reunion with John Annis, a black man who was recommended to work on the ship, but was forcefully removed by his previous owner.
Equiano tried and failed to liberate Annis. Throughout this chapter, Equiano became greatly concerned with salvation and guaranteeing his place in heaven. After learning about predestination from multiple figures, Equiano worried he would never be able to fully repent and reach heaven. He contemplated suicide but did not want to upset God, as he considered suicide a sin. Originally published in , The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, or Gustavus Vass, The African , played a large role in "[altering] public opinion" towards the debate over abolition in Britain. Equiano was viewed as "an authority" in relation to the slave trade. His claims of being born in Eboe now southern Nigeria and being captured and traded as a child gave him definite credibility.
However, several people questioned his credibility in the s to eliminate rising abolitionist sentiments. There were rumours that Equiano was actually born in the West Indies, but these claims were thrown away for being "politically motivated. In , Vincent Carretta published findings of two records that questioned Equiano's birthplace in Africa. This made Carretta doubt the reliability of Equiano's first-hand descriptions of his home "country" and "countrymen". Carretta explains that Equiano presumably knew what parts of his story could be corroborated by others, and, more importantly if he was combining fiction with fact, what parts could not easily be contradicted.
Because only a native African would have experienced the Middle Passage, the abolitionist movement needed an African, not an African-American, voice. Paul E. Lovejoy disputes Carretta's claim that Vassa was born in South Carolina because of Vassa's knowledge of the Igbo society. Lovejoy refers to Equiano as Vassa because he never used his African name until he wrote his narrative. Lovejoy goes on to say: . The fraud must have been perpetrated later, but when?
Certainly the baptismal record cannot be used as proof that he committed fraud, only that his godparents might have. Lovejoy also believes Equiano's godparents, the Guerins and Pascals, wanted the public to think that Vassa was a creole instead of being a fully Black man born in Africa. He claims that this was because the perceived higher status of Creoles in West Indian society and Equiano's mastery of English. In , Carretta wrote a response to Lovejoy's claims about the Equiano's Godparents saying: "Lovejoy can offer no evidence for such a desire or perception. But to have it off by five years, as Lovejoy contends, would place Equiano well into puberty at the age of 17, when he would have been far more likely to have had a say in, and later remembered, what was recorded.
And his godparents and witnesses should have noticed the difference between a child and an adolescent. The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano was one of the first widely-read slave narratives. Eight editions were printed during the author's lifetime, and it was translated into Dutch and German. The work has proven so influential in the study of African and African-American literature that it is frequently taught in both English literature and History classrooms in universities. The work has also been republished in the influential Heinemann African Writers Series.
A short adaptation of the childhood of Equiano was narrated in a documentary titled Equiano in Africa  written and directed by Jason Young. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article includes a list of general references , but it remains largely unverified because it lacks sufficient corresponding inline citations. Please help to improve this article by introducing more precise citations. October Learn how and when to remove this template message. By country or region. Opposition and resistance.
Midwest Quarterly. Retrieved 11 November The Classic Slave Narratives. New American Library. ISBN Brycchan Carey homepage. Retrieved 3 December Resource Bank: Public Broadcasting Service. Retrieved 5 December Worcestershire Records Office. Retrieved 1 December Retrieved 4 January United States: W. Digital Collections for the Classroom. Newberry Library. Retrieved 12 November The Nation. S2CID Equiano, the African: Biography of a self-made man. Athens: University of Georgia Press. Slavery and Abolition. Historically Speaking. Equiano, Olaudah , Sollors, Werner ed. Oxford University Press. Slave narratives. Slave Narrative Collection. Robert Adams c. Francis Bok b. Elizabeth Marsh — Maria ter Meetelen —? Mende Nazer b. Joseph Pitts — c. Brigitta Scherzenfeldt — Lovisa von Burghausen — Olaudah Equiano c.
Jewitt England — United States. Wilson Zamba Zembola b. He eventually embraces Methodism and the idea of the free gift of salvation as central to the Christian message. This faith shapes and molds his life from then on. He has difficulty working with men who are irreligious, and makes ardent efforts to convert men who were not Christian. His religion allows him to enter into the European culture and establish his credentials for his readers. In essence, he makes himself more familiar and less 'other' by his embrace of Christianity. Thus, his religion is deep and personal, but it is also a way for him to become part of the cultural mainstream and more effectively disseminate his abolitionist views. Equiano is actually given multiple names throughout the course of his life, which is a testament to the power of slaveowners, and the nature of the system to tear down any sense of personal identity that a slave might possess.
Even their names were not their own. When the young Equiano arrives in Virginia, his name was Jacob, but "on board the African snow I was called Michael" Equiano remembered, "I at that time began to understand him a little, and refused to be called so, and told him as well as I could that I would be called Jacob; but he said I should not, and still called me Gustavus; and when I refused to answer to my new name, which at first I did, it gained me many a cuff; so at length I submitted, and by which I have been known ever since" The slaveowner's ability to change a slave's name whenever he wanted reinforced the fact that the slave was property.
The slave had no autonomy and no identity. It was not surprising that many slaves, once freed, changed their names back to old ones or choose new ones that were not part of their slave life. For Equiano, who kept his slaveowner name, it was perhaps more important to keep this badge of European-ness with its connotations of greatness, especially as he was a public citizen and was active in the abolitionist movement. Further, the recognizable name - Vasa had been a great Swedish leader known for inspiring freedom - would have helped him achieve his political purpose by appealing to his readers. In what ways does Equiano both condemn and exalt the British people and their morals, values, and culture?
Equiano is a Briton and an African, and has a particularly complicated relationship with his adopted country, which had been responsible for his enslavement. He condemns Britons by calling attention to their complicity in the slave trade. He details: the cruel slave traders on the Middle Passage; the laxity and perversion of Christianity; the terrible conditions for slaves in the West Indies; the destruction of virtue and morality; and, of course, the fact that one as intelligent and heroic as himself had languished in bondage.
This was all meant to strike the consciences of his readers. However, he also praises British society, and adopted its religion, manners, morals, and customs. In the last chapter, he lauds the country for liberty, dignity, and nobility. He praises the British government, hoping they will agree to abolish the slave trade. Since he is effectively a Briton himself and expects his Narrative to be influential in securing abolition, it is no surprise that he expresses acclaim for the British government and people.
However, it appears that he honestly admires his adopted country, and that his love for it reflects his complicated character. How is Equiano able to conjure the horrors of slavery? Be specific with details. Equiano's Narrative is one of the best primary sources for what slavery was like for both slave and master. He does not shy away from cataloging the horrors of the "peculiar institution," starting with his own kidnapping, and his severance from his family.
He details the terrible conditions of the Middle Passage, dwelling on the loathsome smells, mournful cries, and fetid climate of the ship's hull. He describes how many slaves tried to throw themselves into the ocean, but were prevented from doing so by the crew and then beaten mercilessly. In Virgina, Equiano meets an elderly slave woman who actually had to wear an iron muzzle on her face. In the West Indies, he saw how women were raped, and how pregnant women were treated callously. Slaves were beaten for nonexistent reasons, never knowing when their overseer might take offense to their behavior.
They were forced to build their huts on unhealthy land, and contracted diseases. Their property was taken from them. They could be sold at a moment's notice and thus be deprived of friends and family. They were kept in ignorance, and only exposed to vice and depravity; thus, their own minds and consciences were adversely molded by the slave system.
What defines his work as much as anything is the detail he uses in depicting slavery. What are the most salient characteristics of Equiano's personality? Do a character analysis for him. After completing Equiano's autobiography, the reader has an understanding of the mind, character, and abilities of the former slave. His narrative voice is strong and articulate; his prose is lucid. Except for a few rhetorical flourishes, it is straightforward and allows the work to flow easily.
He comes across as a highly intelligent and thoughtful man, albeit a rather emotional one. He is prone to explaining his state of mind just as often as the state of affairs, giving readers a very personal insight into how he was affected by his trials. He expresses righteous indignation on multiple occasions, which reveals his passion. It was this quality that made him an effective abolitionist later in life. He experiences religion in a very personal, intimate way, and seems to verge on the dramatic in regard to this aspect of his life.
For example, when he is onboard a ship where the men blaspheme and carouse, he nearly commits suicide in his despair. He also shows a touch of hubris, tending to inflate the importance of his actions, and to fashion episodes in the book around his own heroic deeds and character. By the end of the work, it appears that he has done just that - he is assured in an identity that is fully his own, and not beholden to any particular creed.
The most interesting aspect of Equiano's character is that he is both a mainstream citizen of Britain, and an outsider to it. Equiano was born in Africa although recent scholarship suggests he was born in South Carolina, he is still of African descent , but considered himself a Londoner. After all, he spent most of his adult life in the British empire. He retained a sense of his African heritage, culture, history, and value system but wholeheartedly embraced those of the Britons as well. He even converted to Christianity, and joined the Methodist church. He was a slave for many years, but earned his manumission by committing to capitalist ideals of business.
While free, he even took the position of overseer on a Jamaica plantation, a position that implicitly supports slavery. However, his race precluded his full immersion into European society, and denied him a true identity. Throughout his narrative, he asserts his multicultural voice and perspective, which embraces both of those sides. He takes pains to avoid insulting or too harshly criticizing his readers, but makes sure they are aware of the true horrors in which they are complicit.
Overall, Equiano straddles his two worlds as best as he can in a century that was keen on reinforcing boundaries in the areas of religion, gender, and race. How does Equiano establish his credentials for his readers? Why does he do this? Equiano, like Frederick Douglass nearly a century after him, took pains to establish his credentials as a truthful, Christian, and reputable man. The first way he does this is by including letters and documentation in the front of the Narrative , all of which attest to his veracity and morals. Further, a frontispiece was fashioned by a renowned artist, showing Equiano holding an open Bible. Lastly, he included in several editions of the book a list of its subscribers, a list that included some of the most well-known and influential men and women of the day.He has reoccurring dreams of the ship crashing, and on the third The Oj Simpson Case of his travels, his Banduras Theory became a reality. Equiano's Narrative is one of the best primary sources for what slavery was like for both slave and master. Alcoholism In The Glass Castle By Jeannette Walls you continue, we will assume Hurricane Vs Hurricane Compare And Contrast you agree Hurricane Vs Hurricane Compare And Contrast our Cookies Policy Alcoholism In The Glass Castle By Jeannette Walls.