Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano Essay

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Assignment # 1— Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano History shows that both Africans and African Americans alike faced unique problems prior to and during the 1800's, particularly prior to 1865. One such problem is the issue of Diaspora and how culture and slavery has affected the choice of religion. It is the purpose of this paper to expose comparatively the extent to which individuals have been influenced by these issues. One such individual is Olaudah Equiano. By following and analyzing some of the key moments of faith in his life, this paper seeks to expose the extent to which the series of controversial dialectical incidents that happen throughout his early life, i.e., his cultural African religious traditions…show more content…
Moreover, despite the universality of belief in a Supreme Being in Africa, formal, church-like worship of God was not widely practiced. This was the world of Olaudah Equiano; but unbeknownst to him, he would soon embark on a passage that would dramatically change life as he knew it. Equiano narrates his life from boyhood onwards; he was born in a gold-coast African village, sold into slavery to another village, moved to yet another village as a slave, and finally captured and sold to European slave-owners. He was then renamed by one of his slave masters. After reading the vivid description of his way of life, customs, and religion of his village in his narrative, it is clear that before the influence of Europeans and Christian missionaries, it appears the Ibo religion was a complex synthesis of magic, and nature. Ibo practiced some form of ancestor worship, which held that in order to gain success in this world; one must appease the spirits of the deceased. According to the memoirs from Equiano, "the natives believe that there is one Creator of all things, who lives in the sun, is girded round with a belt, and that he may never eat or drink; and according to some, he smokes a pipe and governs the events in their lives, especially deaths or captivity." In addition, they also believe in the transmigration of souls (to a certain degree), circumcision, offerings (including burnt) and feast, and washings and
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