The Book of Negroes Truly Relates to History

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Hal Wang Miss Cummings English 12 December 27, 2013 The Book of Negroes truly relates to history The Atlantic slave trade which took place from the 16th to the 19th centuries is able to be viewed as a symbol of inhumanity, barbarity and humans’ desires of money. During the trade, a number of Africans were kidnapped, enslaved and constrainedly transported to the Americas. In the Book of Negroes, a historical fiction which is written by Lawrence Hill, diverse distressing events that the main character, Aminata suffers likewise truly exist in real history. Enslaved Africans were veritably transported by vessels; the experiences of slaves in both the book and actual history are dreadful. In the book, enslaved Africans are crudely treated in white owners’ plantations; furthermore, the conditions of salves are inferior in real history. Beyond doubt, the Book of Negroes has strong connections with actual history. Aminata is sent onto the deck of a huge vessel with a rotting smell after months of marching. This part of plot is related to history because salves were truly transported by slave ships from Africa to the Americas; “the earliest ships used to transport human beings from Africa to enslavement in North America were converted merchantmen; later, special vessels were built, equipped with air scuttles, ports, and open gratings” (Mannix, “Slave Ships”). While Aminata is going down into the ship, she finds the living conditions of black people in the dark, stinking place are excessively disgusting; she describes “[their] corridor [is] nothing but a narrow footpath separating the men to [their] left and right. Piled like fish in a bucket, the men [are] stacked on three levels---one just above [her] feet, another by [her] waist and a third level by [her] neck. They [can] not lift their heads more than a foot off the wet, wooden slabs” (Hill 50). Aminata is
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