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The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano: Written by Himself Paperback – January 30, 2012
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--Henry Louis Gates, Jr. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
From the Inside Flap
Introduction by Robert Reid-Pharr
In this truly astonishing eighteenth-century memoir, Olaudah Equiano recounts his remarkable life story, which begins when he is kidnapped in Africa as a boy and sold into slavery and culminates when he has achieved renown as a British antislavery advocate. The narrative "is a strikingly beautiful monument to the startling combination of skill, cunning, and plain good luck that allowed him to win his freedom, write his story, and gain international prominence," writes Robert Reid-Pharr in his Introduction. "He alerts us to the very concerns that trouble modern intellectuals, black, white, and otherwise, on both sides of the Atlantic."
The text of this Modern Library Paperback Classic is set from the definitive ninth edition of 1794, reflecting the author's final changes to his masterwork. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Readers beware: here lies real adventure. Dover's Equiano has little scholarly apparatus, and doesn't really address recent assertions that he may not have been born in Nigeria. (Cf. V. Carretta, "Equiano the African," & debates in the journal "Slavery & Abolition.") But it presents the basic text at the lowest price, making a great work available to cash-strapped students. Even apart from his riveting descriptions of 18C slavery, OE saw more of the world than almost all other Africans and indeed most people up to his time, successfully negotiating countless challenging cross-cultural encounters. OE offers perceptive ethnographies of Igbo, Caribbean, North American, British and Miskitu Indian societies, as well as a moving conversion narrative in the classic Augustinian tradition of autobiography. This work offers endless riches for those studying many aspects of the modern world. Finally, it documents his later career as a leading abolitionist, a movement strongly influenced by this foundational text. Truly a book that made history.
There's no excuse for Western Slavery; he should never have been kidnapped and taken from his home, along with his sister. He never saw her again (except for once after the kidnapping), nor his parents ever again.
He was extremely bright, learned English, learned how to write, how to be a sailor and worked his way into the trust of the company or men who owned him ... and was considered indispensable. He was keen enough to learn about how to turn a profit and then purchase his freedom, and to put out his story, which we enjoy today.
I did have a hard time believing the episode with sea-horses, but then I'm no sailor and wouldn't know how they act in a herd (or a school?).
There was no mention of meeting William Wilberforce, but he was introduced to the Christian religion and became one.
Interesting, Two thumbs up.
Richard J. Bennett
If you find yourself not to have much of an opinion or knowledge of America's true beginning and who suffered most, read this book. Then, pick a number with more than two commas, and multiply Olauda's story by that number (keeping in mind that as horrifying as many of the circumstances were in Olaudah's narrative, that his was unique and much less horrifying than the circumstances and ultimate outcome of the lives of most having come to America via sailing ships such as these in the early days).
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I just bought it for a class assignment paper, so can't tell a lot of it but that was easy to read and understand.Published 29 days ago by Amazon Customer
very good book, shows you slavery from several different angles.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
this i had only bought for one of my classes and i had thought when i got it that it was in good conditionPublished on February 4, 2013 by Russigirl18
The supplier sent exactly what they said they would when they said they would. Great condition and timely arrival!!! Read morePublished on August 19, 2011 by Lizzard
The product said it was in good shape, as soon as I open the cover the backing fell off of it, I didnt return it b/c I needed it for class.Published on February 1, 2011 by ALP