Slavery In The Autobiography Of Olaudah Equiano

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The Atlantic slave trade was viewed differently by very many people. The Europeans and Africans both had different views within their own culture. To the slaves being sold and bought it was a tragedy. In some kingdoms, like the Kongo, they tried to stop slavery before it reached them. Most of these efforts were found in vain and the slave trade ended up hurting them more in the end because the kingdoms would go into a panic trying to keep power. There merchants were making enough money and had enough support from kings that they kept the slave trade going. The slaves had essentially turned into a product that was to trade rather than the human beings they were. In the autobiography of Olaudah Equiano, we mostly see slavery as a…show more content…
He validates this by how the kingdom of Affonso had been trading with Portugal and had sent their children to be the priest. They thought that this had bought them some mercy and would keep them in good spirits with the Portuguese. As time had gone on, their “Kingdom [was] being lost in so many ways” because they had been focusing on the Portuguese while the real threat was within their own walls. He also uses the faith of God as a middle ground between the two kingdoms. He uses statements such as “little service to God” and that these crimes are “doing a great harm not only to the service of God” to make it seem as if the king should help because of religious reasons. He speaks of how his people are treated horribly when they are taken. They were “immediately ironed and branded with fire” and “the whites allege that they have bought them.” The Kongo had passed laws trying to prevent any wrongdoing to their people, but the Europeans didn’t care to go by them because they held all the power in these dealings. King Affonso tried to use a religious appeal to King Jao hoping that he would take mercy. Reading this document, one can see how cruel the slave trade was to the native Africans, even the ones that weren’t personally enslaved but instead their
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