The Longest Memory – Fred D’Aguiar
The Longest Memory is a novel by Fred D’Aguiar, which has many different underlying themes and ideas communicated through it, but all relating back to two main themes of the book. These themes are Racial Superiority and the opposing ideas of Slavery and Christian Values. The date in which this novel is set (early eighteenth century) was a brutal and a seemingly amoral time. The white population at that time had deemed it just to enslave African peoples, whom they had caught or lured onto slave ships and brought back to America. In 1861, there were 15 slave states, which agreed and consented towards enslavement. There were many arguments for and against enslavement. Most of the reasons for enslavement came back to the one idea that the African race was lesser, or more primitive, than the white people who populated America at the time. People deemed it just and rightful that they can enslave them, whip them, beat them and still be seen as a morally just and Christian human being. Many people thought that no matter how wrongfully they treated the slaves, they would felt no guilt, nor regret, as they justified it with themselves that the race was nothing more than stock, so they may be treated as such. Animals back in those days were sometimes treated and fed better than the slaves. Many of the people who owned, or were a part of the slave concept, were not in any moral remorse, as they did not see what they were doing as erroneous. They did not see how their acts in slavery may collide with their morals and Christian Values. It is seen that much of the population at that time were not in any obligation to treat these slaves as more than stock, as the African slaves were, in their eyes, inferior. It was an untouched subject by much of the white population, that their actions about slavery and their support for it conflicted with their values and morals, as a Christian person. They did not see the wrong or immoral aspect of their...
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