Olaudah Equiano 's Narrative Of The Life Of Olaudah Essay

1234 Words Dec 10th, 2015 5 Pages
The excerpt from The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, by Olaudah Equiano, touches upon the treatment and lives of slaves in the West Indies. Through this short excerpt the reader learns about what he saw while he was a slave in the West Indies islands. Not only are there very few primary sources that have survived from the eighteenth century to modern day, but also there are hardly any sources that come from the viewpoint of a well-educated, free slave. When reading this excerpt one needs to keep in mind biases when it comes to reading an excerpt of a freed slave. Historians can use this excerpt to better understand what it meant to be a slave during this viewpoint. The author of The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano is Gustavus Vassa, a former slave who writes upon what he had seen while he was a slave. The name Olaudah Equiano was given to him by one of his masters during the time he was a slave. In the excerpt one learns how he was able to, “…see many curious scenes in different island,” (Equiano page 107). Through time in the West Indies, he is able to give an account of his life as one of the few sources from the point of view of a slave during the eighteenth century. There are two historical questions this source can help historians answer. The first historical question is how slaves were treated and what everyday life looked like for a slave who found themselves on the West Indies islands. The excerpt from The Interesting…

Related Documents