Sample Essay

The mastery of Stephanie Smallwood lies in the fact that in her book she restrains to present the readers numeric information regarding the study of Middle Passage, which can be read from the chronicles as well. It is interesting to read the journals, letters and stories about the trade to have a close look at the issue of slavery rather than using account books.

The narrative of African slaves brought to America, saltwater slaves, presents the brutality hidden under the ignominious cycle of slavery drawn brilliantly by Smallwood. The book focuses on the British slave trade from the Gold Cost during a period ranging from 1675 to 1725 while presenting her exploration of the processes of forced migration. Smallwood’s book, says Ira Berlin (author of ‘Many Thousands Gone’), is a new starting point for the studies of the Middle Passage. The narrative is different from the other studies of the Atlantic slave trade that Smallwood enters into the minds of the petty slaves in a way that we see the things from their perspective while sympathizing with them. It is really moving to read the account of the origin of African-America in the global market that was violent. It is an account of the way the brutal act of slavery was seen by Europeans and the Africans and also criticizes historical accounts simultaneously.

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