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The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings by Olaudah, Equiano Essay

In Equiano Olaudah’s book, the reader is normally given a chance to perceive slavery which dominated during the eighteenth century from a point of view that is not popularly known, that is, a perspective of slaves themselves.

Due to the fact that many serfs during that time were not in a position to obtain adequate and suitable education through reading and writing, Olaudah’s perception is both fascinating and implicative for the reader to start understanding the life of a serf. Olaudash provide the reader with the in-depth explanation of his savagery experience.

He makes use of the data available, as well as the beliefs and outlooks of blacks and whites he observed during that time (Equiano 11). Equiano needed not only to share his savagery undergoing, but also was interested in readers to come into knowledge of how unjust his life struggles were due to savagery. Equiano also hoped that his content would be of benefit in continuation of abolition undertaking in England.

When the first edition of Equiano’s book was edited, there were numerous books, academic journals and essays were being written by different authors in order to help popularize the idea of total abolition of slavery in England(Equiano 12).

Equiano’s book is particularly implicative because he knew that “what the antagonistic side to the savagery and the associated trade required in 1789 was not another case of the Central passage by a white viewer, but instead demonstration from an enslaved African sufferer and toughie of it.

Equiano was successful in prosperously doing exactly that by accounting own case of being traded into savagery numerous occasions, dealing with unfair and oppressive masters, being exposed to unjust rules against the blacks and ultimately purchasing his own emancipation, just to again run into a sequence of undeserved episodes and circumstances (Equiano 19).

Even though Equiano provides a peculiar case and account of his life experiences, beginning as a young child and concluding well into his later adult life, his story is somewhat distorted by the eventual inaccuracy of exact dates and location where events took place.

All through his novelty, Equiano posits various sequences of occurrences that he witnessed all through his life. The editor does a fantastic job at identifying the actual dates and locations that these occasions happened in reality. In some other instances, Equiano is out of dates by a few days.

A key instance of this is that Equiano claims that he was born an African in 1745. In a different case as pointed later in the manuscript, he claims that he was taken into savagery when he was 11 years of age.

If his assertions were to be correct, then at that time he would have been just eight years of age by the time he was being taken to slavery. The author must have either been born 1743 in order to be 11 years in 1754, or he was nine years old at the time he was being enslaved (Walvin 43).

While there are inconsistencies in Equiano’s cases, in general he furthered a sense of trust and originality to his novelty by naming several people who existed in reality, locations and actual date that aligned with his undertakings.

Take for instance, when he posits that he was taken for baptism in 1759 in in some place in the United Kingdom. The abbreviated work is in a place to recognize as a rural community proof and list that authenticates that Gustavus Vassa, that is, the forename specified to the victim during his admission into savagery.

In his evidence, there also subsist a number of journeys and vessels that names and argues to have been constituents of, and that the author is in a situation to find certification for.

As noted above, the author does an outstanding and remarkable job by noting regions and even the exact dates. To add on this, the editor has also efficiently explicated to the reader a range of conditions and phrases that were normal to the reader in Equiano’s era, but have since then appeared unrecognized to the contemporary readers.

He also adjoins orientations to other journals, academic papers, reviews, books, and essays obtainable around the same phase or since his work to further describe some of the notes that are provided by him (Carretta 15).

Equiano’s book “The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings” offers both the reader and his period and contemporary time readers an education case of what it was like to be a serf during the eighteenth century. The editor in an appropriate manner achieves his principal end and intention of informing his supporters of the fight back that the black race experienced during the mentioned period of time in record.

He also successfully provides a story different from what was commonly published during his time – an individual account from black serf, contrary to popular beliefs on the need for abolishment from the white people.

In conclusion, this book becomes a treasure to students pursuing a relevant course of study, scholars and academicians, specialists and professionals in the discipline of history. Interested persons can get this book from various online libraries. Equiano’s work left a lasting and authentic legacy in the fields of history and critical writing.

Works Cited

Carretta, Vincent. Equiano, the African: Biography of a self-made man. Athens: University of Georgia Press. 2005. Print.

Equiano, Olaudah. The interesting narrative and other writings. ed. by Vincent Carretta. 2nd Ed. London: Penguin. 2003. Print.

Walvin, James. Black ivory: Slavery in the British Empire. 2nd Ed. Oxford: Blackwell. 2001. Print.

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Moon, I. (2019, April 2). The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings by Olaudah, Equiano [Blog post]. Retrieved from

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Moon, Ingrid. "The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings by Olaudah, Equiano." IvyPanda, 2 Apr. 2019, Accessed 6 Dec. 2019.

1. Ingrid Moon. "The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings by Olaudah, Equiano." IvyPanda (blog), April 2, 2019.


Moon, Ingrid. "The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings by Olaudah, Equiano." IvyPanda (blog), April 2, 2019.


Moon, Ingrid. 2019. "The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings by Olaudah, Equiano." IvyPanda (blog), April 2, 2019.


Moon, I. (2019) 'The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings by Olaudah, Equiano'. IvyPanda, 2 April. (Accessed: 6 December 2019).

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