By Anne Bailey

It really is an lousy tale. it is an lousy tale. Why do you need to deliver this up now?--Chief Awusa of AtorkorFor centuries, the tale of the Atlantic slave exchange has been filtered during the eyes and documents of white Europeans. during this watershed booklet, historian Anne C. Bailey makes a speciality of stories of the exchange from the African viewpoint. African chiefs and different elders in a space of southeastern Ghana-once famously referred to as "the previous Slave Coast"-share tales that exhibit that Africans have been investors in addition to sufferers of the exchange. Bailey argues that, like sufferers of trauma, many African societies now adventure a fragmented view in their previous that in part explains the blanket of silence and disgrace round the slave exchange. shooting ratings of oral histories that have been passed down via generations, Bailey reveals that, even supposing Africans weren't equivalent companions with Europeans, even their partial involvement within the slave exchange had devastating outcomes on their background and id. during this exceptional and revelatory booklet, Bailey explores the fragile and fragmented nature of historic reminiscence.

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By 2003, however, marked changes had taken place. After years of talk about erecting a seawall, one is now being built by means of the Keta Sea Defense Project. Furthermore, the sea itself has receded, allowing room for a wide beach and much more breathing room for structures built along the ocean. Both are welcome developments that have already transformed these historical sea towns, bringing back a vibrancy and a hope that had been somewhat lost in recent years. The Keta Lagoon is a major throughway to other towns in Anlo territory.

40 Coming as it did at the end of the slave-trade era, this incident represented an important turning point in the history of slave trading in this area and other areas in West Africa. The significance of this watershed moment will be fully explored in this book. The story itself is a metaphor for the some of the major aspects of the slave-trade era—including African participation in the trade and the impact of the transatlantic slave trade on a particular region. It is thus a good starting point for greater discussion of such issues in the chapters that follow.

From the standpoint of colonialism, it would be important for Anlos to portray themselves not as slave dealers who sold other Ewes to the Europeans but as unified with other Ewes in Ghana and Togo in opposition to foreign forces; it would be important to emphasize the elements of the story that suggest that the Anlos were tricked by European traders. It would be important 46 a f r i c a n v o i c e s o f t h e a t l a n t i c s l av e t r a d e to point to the negative impact of dissension and division within the community.

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