Equiano Paper - Final Draft

Equiano Paper - Final Draft - Jacob Kuta AMH 2097 05 6...

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Jacob Kuta AMH 2097 – 05 6 February 2007 Word count – 1,323
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Olaudah Equiano and his Anti-slavery Argument In the Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano , there were many different defining moments and times of profound impact on Equiano’s life. Throughout the book, Equiano establishes himself as a free man, a sailor, a writer, very importantly, a Christian, and most importantly, an abolitionist. Equiano’s book was a milestone in the anti-slavery argument, not only by helping fight the cause but by also showing first hand, the harsh and brutal reality that the slaves went through. Equiano had been exposed to slavery since childhood. Even his Igbo nation had slaves, and the “men and women sold as slaves either were prisoners of war or had been convicted of crimes such as adultery or kidnapping” (9). This was alike in a few ways that Equiano would be exposed to slavery but also completely different in the fact that these people, more or less, ‘deserved’ to be in slavery for the crimes they committed. At the age of eleven, Equiano was captured by slave traders and forced into slavery, never to see his family again. After being sold around for a short period of time, Equiano eventually found himself forced on a slave ship bound for the West Indies. It was here that Equiano first experienced the harsh punishment of being a slave. Scared and confused, Equiano hoped for death on the ship but instead “one of them [the white men] held me fast by the hands, and laid me across I think the windlass, and tied my feet, while the other flogged me severely” (65). This was first instance of Equiano being beaten to that degree. After his beating, Equiano directly speaks of himself committing suicide. It shows how appalling slavery can be if the beatings caused Equiano to think, “I would have jumped over the side [of the boat] but I could not” (65).
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Equiano Paper - Final Draft - Jacob Kuta AMH 2097 05 6...

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