Veastly Different Eras Analysis

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A Comparison Between Authors from Vastly Different Eras

At first glance, you might assume that authors living and writing on topics existing over 150 years apart would be so vastly different with no realistic chance of sharing a common message. Each author lived in distinct time periods with marked differences in writing styles, religious backgrounds, and motivations. The daily habits and obstacles of each would be entirely foreign to the other had they ever had the opportunity to meet. One struggled daily to obtain food while the other could simply purchase it at the local store. Despite their separation in in the gulf of time, Mary Rowlandson and Herman Melville shared similar experiences in witnessing the interaction of two cultures and
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Ships coming from Africa carried people captured against their will and turned them into a commodity to be bought and sold. Subjected to traumatic experiences of brutality, these people experienced the gravest of inhumane conditions as slaves. Random beatings and physical torture occur at the whim of their new masters. Food and water are a luxury reserved for higher social classes, slaves being permitted only the minimum required to sustain life. Chains, iron bars, and pistols are tool to render them virtually powerless and enforce their bondage. Ordinarily, most individuals desire peace, but there is a finite amount of abuse bearable before the soul lashes out for vengeance. This mistreatment consequently leads to spontaneous uprisings that display a sickening lack of mercy: “the Negroes revolted suddenly, wounded dangerously the boatswain and the carpenter, and successively killed eighteen men of those who were sleeping upon deck, some with handspikes and hatchets, and others by throwing them alive overboard, after tying them” (Melville 1403). The slaves having now taken control of the ship continue the murderous rampage: “the Negro Babo commanded the Ashantee Martinqui and the Ashantee Lecbe to go and commit the murder; that those two went down with hatchets to the berth of Don Alexandro; that, yet half alive and mangled, they dragged him on deck” (Melville 1404). The fate of Don Alexandro illustrates reality that all men are capable of vile behavior: “uncertain what fate had befallen the remains of Don Alexandro, frequently asked the Negro Babo where they were, and, if still on board, whether they were to be preserved for interment ashore, entreating him so to order it; that the Negro Babo answered nothing till the fourth day, when at sunrise, the deponent coming on deck, the Negro Babo showed him a skeleton” (Melville 1405). In under four days, the slaves subjected the body to unknown processes until

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