The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano

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Broadview Press, 2001 M02 22 - 331 pages

The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano was a key work of nineteenth-century slave narrative autobiography. Written and published by Equiano, a former slave, it became a prototype for the narratives that followed. Kidnapped in Africa as a child, Equiano was transported to the Caribbean and then to Virginia, bought by a Quaker shipowner, and placed in service at sea. Aboard various American and British ships, he sailed throughout the world, and he continued to do so after having purchased his freedom in 1766. Once settled in London, he fought tirelessly to end slavery.

This edition of Equiano’s Narrative places the text in the center of abolitionist activity in the late eighteenth century. Equiano knew many of the leading abolitionist figures of his time, and this edition allows readers to trace the common ideas and cross-influences in the works of the political and literary figures who fought for the end of slavery in America and England. The original 1789 text of the narrative has been used for the Broadview edition with Equiano’s subsequent emendations included in the appendices.

 

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Contents

The authors account of his country their manners
45
CHAP II
61
CHAP V
111
CHAP IX
178
Picking up eleven miserable men at sea in returning
214
CHAP XII
236
Letters and Reviews
255
Writings of the First Abolitionist Movement
266
Benjamin Franklin On the Slave Trade 1790
287
David Hume Of National Characters 175354
293
Malachy Postlethwayt Britains Commercial Interest Explained
300
Benjamin Rush A Vindication of the Address to the Inhabitants
306
James Tobin Cursory Remarks upon the Reverend Mr Ramsays
313
William Wilberforce The Speech of William Wilberforce
321
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About the author (2001)

Angelo Costanzo, Professor Emeritus of English, Shippensburg University, is one of the world’s leading experts on Equiano. He has written on slave narratives and African-American literature, and is the author of Surprizing Narrative: Olaudah Equiano and the Beginnings of Black Autobiography.

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