Yaa Gyasi's Homecoming

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In response to the everlasting effects of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, I believe that Yaa Gyasi wrote Homegoing in order to shed a light on the harrowing reality that many Africans and African Americans onced lived through. Enslaved and stripped of their identities, Yaa Gyasi illustrates the dehumanization of Africans through the characters of Esi and Ness. Set in the time period of when Africans were beginning to work with the Europeans in the slave trade, invaders capture Esi and take her to the dungeons of the Cape Coast Castle. Here, the memories of her splendid past life only serve as a way to forget about the Castle. The conditions of the dungeons are unbearable; women stacked on top of each other and their waste was up to their ankles (Gyasi 46). Even worse, the British soldiers raped them. Gyasi demonstrates this through the eyes of Esi:…show more content…
Through this, she conveys the pain and hopelessness that so many felt as they had no choice but to obey a white man’s demands and needs. They were all treated as objects rather than human beings. Gyasi further emphasizes this through the story of Ness. On a plantation in America, Ness experiences the brutality and savagery many slave owners imposed on their slaves: “The Devil shows no mercy… She is beaten until the whip snaps off her back like pulled taffy, and then she is kicked to the ground” (81). Gyasi clearly depicts the ruthless nature that Ness’s owner has. By comparing him to the Devil, she expresses the evilness and corruption amongst all white slave owners. Although very few were kind, many of them whipped Africans and beat them, even to their death. The lives of Africans did not matter to a white man, and Gyasi clearly illustrates this through Esi and Ness. She shows how the slave trade turned human beings, the Africans, into the property of white male plantation
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