Middle Passage-Movie.

Essay by EggyHigh School, 11th gradeA+, December 2003

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The "Middle Passage" was the journey of slave trading ships from the west coast of Africa, where the slaves were obtained, across the Atlantic, where they were sold or in some cases traded for goods. However, this voyage has come to be remembered for much more than simply the transport and sale of slaves. The "Middle Passage" was the longest, hardest, most dangerous, and also most horrific part of the journey of the slave ships. Based on "Amidas", the short movie displayed during an American History Class, the abominable and inhuman conditions which the Africans were faced with on their voyage clearly mirror the great evil of the slave trade. When watching the scenes, one becomes oblivious to the fact that most ships were "tight packers", carrying a huge quantity of slaves who were forced to live in spaces smaller than that of a grave, or in some cases had to stand on top of one another.

In addition to extreme overcrowding, there was also inadequate ventilation, not to mention little or no sanitation. And as if nothing happened, in order to strengthen them before sale, the slaves were normally fed better in the days directly before their arrival to the new world. Before they could be sold, the slaves would be oiled to make their skin shiny and any imperfections would be "fixed" in order to improve their appearance and get the best market price. In other words, the "Middle Passage" is a story of pain, survival, and transformation.

Pain reflected by this infamous route of slave trade can be developed in many directions. One can discuss about it from the aspect of a viewer, but also as a victim. Those are two completely distinct kinds of pain, but both have a great influence on one's physical,