Abina Paper

1264 Words Feb 18th, 2015 6 Pages
Oppression of the lesser In the year 1876 Abina Mansah, from the Gold Coast of Africa, escaped slavery and declared herself a free women. The Gold Coast became a British protectorate in 1834 and experienced some political turmoil with the transition of powers. The British governed the area under their crown and expected the natives to adhere to the rules of their empire. Problems arose when enforcing their government involved impeding on their newly joint economy. The British magistrates had concern with trial cases concerning “important faces” of the natives. In Abina’s story magistrate Melton was unsure with the case because it involved Quamina Eddoo, owner of a palm oil farm, which incidentally paid many British taxes. The trial is …show more content…
In the transcript she simply says she “cannot answer”. In the graphic novel her British educated lawyer, Mr. Davis, explains that she is unable to answer because her words “are not easily translated”.
Secondly Abina is oppressed as a young woman. All of the important people Abina encounters on her journey are men. Author Getz depicts this on the cover of the novel showing Abina facing the outside world alone, to the backs of all these “important men”. If read very closely one can pick up hints of patriarchy in the transcript however the graphic novel does a more effective job in showing a women’s place in society. The graphic novel includes the fact that young women were the more ideal slaves to have because they were seen as “apprentices” who would not dare to run away. This on top of the already present British patriarchal ideology oppressed Abina not only as a slave but also as a woman. Mr. Brew uses this as his main argument in trial to even further oppress not only Abina but also women as a whole in that society. The graphic novel also depicts other women as oppressed and in poor light. The other young girls who were originally with Abina before she was bought are shown being paraded around in chains and very little clothing. The only other woman Abina encounters is the woman in the town market. Abina approaches a native man originally referring to

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