Post #6: The Black Atlantic

The Black Atlantic was an episode of a documentary series that analyzes the history of African Americans. The Black Atlantic was an in-depth account of the Transatlantic slave trade. With accounts from both the black and white perspectives, this episode was remarkably fascinating and enlightening view of the slave trade. This episode was in vast contrast to the way that the slave trade was taught in ordinary high school textbooks. This account was anything but ordinary. I was captivated by the tour through the fort in Sierra Leone, Africa where the slaves were kept before they were forced to embark on their voyages to far off lands. The crumbling walls told the story of the animalistic treatment of slaves by their traders and their buyers. For example, the men were kept in a pen separate from the women and children; thereby, separating families. Furthermore, a man analyzed the scrupulous records of the slaves of his ancestor. This led the man to find an ancestral link from a slave named Priscilla who still has a direct relative alive today. This is a particularly interesting discovery because it is very difficult for African-Americans today to find their original African ancestor. Several other topics were shared in detail through the episode but one prominent such detail was the fact that the Spanish set up a settlement for runaway slaves. This fact gave slaves hope for a brighter future and a step towards emancipation for all.

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