As many know from reading the story of the enslaved Israelites in Egypt, slavery in Africa dates back to the beginning of its’ history. However, African slavery was not confined to our historical definition of slavery in America. Slavery in Africa was a broad concept and differed throughout and within kingdoms and societies. Forms of chattel slavery, serfdom, and dependent family membership were all practiced in Africa (Franklin and Higginbotham, 9). In Africa, there were several ways to become slave. Many slaves were the poor people of the society who chose to enter slavery in order to be under the protection of a wealthier family (Franklin …show more content…
How does his account agree or disagree with your authors’ description? How often did the captured think about freedom? What evidence supports the theory that captured Africans thought about freedom and to what extent?
There are several accounts of Europeans describing their frightening first experiences with Africans being due to their savage like looks, behaviors, and language. Olaudah Equiano, who was a captive slave of the middle passage, described his first encounter of Europeans was just as shocking. Equiano, who was also referred to as Gustavus Vassa the African, was terrified by his initial encounter of white men because of their “long hair”, “red faces”, and foreign language (Franklin and Higginbotham, 32). Equiano emphasized his horror and his writing and noted that he fainted as result. He also, feared that the strange savage white men planned to eat their black captives (Franklin and Higginbotham, 32). Equiano described the slave ship as possessing a diverse group of Africans changed together. He noted that all of the captives on the ship expressed a common fear and sorrow. The author describes the middle passage as a “ living nightmare”, similar to the terrifying description Equiano provided. Because the middle passage was horrible, the African captives always thought about freedom. The author notes, that several Africans were “killed while resisting capture” and many chose to commit suicide jumping overboard rather than remain a slave. (Franklin and Higginbotham,