Abina and the Important Men Essay

1490 Words Mar 26th, 2014 6 Pages
Abina and the Important Men
Abina and the Important Men: a Graphical History was written by Trevor R. Getz and Liz Clarke. The story of Abina Mansah is somewhat an inspiring graphical history based on an 1876 court transcript. Abina, a woman of West Africa, was wrongfully enslaved and as a consequence, she took her former master, Quamina Eddoo, to court. The overall setting took place on the Gold Coast during the 19th century. The main scenes take place in the court room, which is filled with many “important men.” The men included a British judge, two Euro African attorneys, countrymen, and an entire jury of wealthy, high class local town leaders. This book is broken down into several parts; the graphical history, transcript, historical
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Davis reworded the question to ask if she had been forced to do work or if she had chosen to do the work. “In some instances, she told me to do so and I did it. Other times, I acted of my own accord.”(Chapter 3, page 30) Abina was then asked if all other workers and servants were slaves. Abina didn’t respond in the likings of the important men. “Are you aware that everybody in the protectorate is freed and that those people you saw in the defendant’s house are as free as the defendant, or Mr. Davis, or I,” said Eddoo’s lawyer. (Chapter 3, page 35) Infuriated, Abina claimed that most of the workers in the house were children of slaves and had no say in the situation at hand. Slaves were unpaid and Abina received no monetary funds, but only cloth and food. The defendants claimed, “In fact, it’s pretty obvious that you were paid, in cloth and in food.” (Chapter 5, page 61) Abina still believed she was a slave because she could no longer do as she pleased, maintain health, take care of herself independently, or marry who she pleased. “When a free person is sitting down at ease the slave is working.” (Page 119) Abina may have been an empowering, fearless woman, but over all she lacked legal understanding of slavery causing her to look uneducated and supporting the belief that women aren’t equal to men. From the examples provided so far, the readers also can see how language and words used

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