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English 1: What was Equiano’s attitude regarding his life in the British Navy

Unlike the typical slavery-related posts in this year’s lineup of books, this story takes place mostly in Europe, rather than America. This one is about a young man named Olaudah Equiano (commonly referred to as “Equiano”). He and his sister were both taken from Africa and brought to Europe as slaves. There his master brought Equiano along with him in the British Navy. In this essay I will be discussing his attitude toward his life in the British Navy.

When he was a teenager, he was eager to participate in the British Navy. He wished he could be in a battle at first. While feeling excited, he as well felt uncertain, even somewhat worried about his future. He didn’t know what life in the British Navy entailed, much less the life of a slave in the British Navy. With him being young, however, he didn’t make worrying his biggest priority. He was more excited about this change of ways than anything else. It was almost like an awaiting adventure.

His attitude towards life in the British Navy comes down to his excitement, eagerness, and uncertainty, the feeling of excitement being the dominant element in his attitude. While he was eager and excited about going to the British Navy, he was also uncertain and anxious about his future.

After getting kidnapped with his sister, he was shipped off to North America where a captain of a merchant ship named Michael Pascal bought him. Equiano was brought to Pascal’s ship where he was treated kindly. Equiano made a friend with a boy named Richard Baker, and the pair became inseparable. During the journeys aboard Pascal’s merchant ship, there were many frightening moments. Throughout the next few years of his life, he went on from ship to ship, all the while remaining with Pascal whom he admired greatly. Equiano’s years at sea seemed to be the happiest he ever experienced. He learned to speak English quite well and read and write. Though at first, he had a frightened and nervous attitude to living at sea, this eventually changed.

He loved his master very much and, being a boy, he ached to see a battle break forth among the English and French. After a few years in the Navy, he was able to see a battle and take part in it; he was no longer an African boy but an English man. Soon Equiano was promised that he would be set free from slavery once the ship he was on arrived at its destination. Unfortunately, this was an untrue statement (bunch of false hopes), and Pascal locked him up in a room until he found another captain that could buy Equiano from him.

THANKS for reading this essay, I hope you learned a bit about the beginning story of Olaudah Equiano. This autobiography just like any other autobiographies is really fascinating. How each person had to struggle with something, whether it be to encounter slavery or hardest moments in their life, or any big obstacle that they had to overcome. The way each person overcomes their obstacle is really fascinating. Those stories are worth reading and are really motivational. I’ll post more soon and have a great day!

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