Olaudah Equiano Summary

Words: 524
Pages: 3

The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, written by Equiano himself, is more than just an autobiography, it’s also a treatise. The book follows Equiano’s life from his childhood in Africa, to his time as a slave, freeman and an abolitionist, and throughout the book Equiano asserts that slavery was an inefficient economic institution based on corrupt morals and that its continuation is a hypocrisy for the whole British Empire. As a result of this autobiographical format of this treatise, Equiano’s experiences help give an insider look to other people involved in the slave trade, as well as bystanders, and illustrates why slavery should be abolished, and is able to do this effectively because Equiano is also part of mainstream society. In Narrative, Equiano describes slavery, both directly and indirectly, as an economic system that is inefficient within the British …show more content…
Slaves on the other hand work most oftenly in perpetuity, which usually ends in either their death or if they are lucky they purchase their freedom, which is also how the slave-trade sustains itself, the demand for new blood is always there. However on Barbadoes, the cost of replacing the 1,000 dead slaves could get expensive considering Equiano himself was purchased at least for thirty-forty pounds, because of their low life-spans slavery is inefficient economically as mentioned by Equiano. Another economically inefficient practice within the slave-trade is the harsh punishments and treatment of the slaves themselves. During his time in Barbados, Equiano knows of men who treated their slaves in a humane manner, for example, one man allowed refreshments and a two-hour break at midday and as a result, “. . . [the slavemaster] raises more provisions on his estate than [the slaves] can destroy. . .”. Allowing his slaves free-time has still allowed the