Assimilation of Blacks in Song of Solomon, Push and Life of Olaudah Equiano

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Assimilation of Blacks in Song of Solomon, Push and The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano Our African American texts call for close examination of the status of slaves and subsequent generations of free Blacks, how they fit into American society, and their quest for and denial of the benefits of Americanism. So does one assimilate or resist? But The Melting Pot Theory is not inclusive of Blacks since the process of assimilation could not work its magic on black skin. In the slave narrative, The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, or Gustavus Vassa, The African, the capture of Africans, their ultimate enslavement in the Americas, the West Indies, and Europe exemplify the assigned…show more content…
According to S. Dale McLemore, author of Racial and Ethnic Relations in America blacks were [an]immigrant" minority in the sense that they had been removed from heir native lands and had entered the host society as a subordinate group, [however] their subordinate position was not regarded as something temporary. They resembled a colonized minority in the sense that they had been physically "conquered and, subsequently, had not been accepted as suitable candidates for full membership in the society of the conquerors. But they were not a conquered people in their own land (311). Nonetheless, a forced or quasi colonization fostered a partial assimilation. McLemore goes on to point out that even though the slave community could not assimilate under "normal" circumstances there was a forced assimilation in that slaves who survived the Middle Passage were in no condition mentally or physically to object to whatever plans of participation were laid out for them by the dominant culture (40). In as much as Olaudah Equiano did not understand the condition of slaves in the West Indies because in Africa they assimilated quite well, he did understand the concept of it. However, slavery existed in Africa because warring communities took slaves as trophies of their victories, but Equiano points out they were treated well. Equiano writes, "some of these slaves have even slaves under them, as their own property, and for their own use"

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