#BlackHistoryMonth #AmericanHistory #WorldHistory For Black History Month I’d like to recognize W.E.B. Dubois a champion of African-American and African’s advancements.
The favorite book that I studied in college in the African-American Studies Department at Rutgers University was “The Souls of Black Folk“, published in 1903 by W.E.B. DuBois. Traveling this vast world has made me become audaciously aware that this statement is relevant around the world well within the Twenty First Century. “Herein lie buried many things which if read with patience may show the strange meaning of being black here at the dawning of the Twentieth Century. This meaning is not without interest to you, Gentle Reader; for the problem of the Twentieth Century is the problem of the color line.” It’s not just what American’s know as black and white, there is literally a problem of color, of a need to be “white” vs a hatred of being brown-skinned, a disenfranchisement of the tanned man.
If you would like to listen to a free audio version of the book click http://www.booksshouldbefree.com/book/souls-of-black-folks-by-web-du-bois Leave your thoughts in a comment, would love to hear them.
I went to an Internations http://www.internations.org event last night, which is a great cocktail party where expats from various countries and Peruvians who have lived abroad (there are actually events around the world). It takes place once a month on a Friday. I happened to arrive before Matthew, so I got the occasional guy that would come up to me to see if I was single or not. I saw this one guy staring at me from across the room and about 5 minutes later the following conversation began:
European guy: But what county is your family from?
Me: I’m African-American – so some country in Africa
European guy: But which country?
Me: (really) So, they brought African’s over in ships and they didn’t keep records of where people were from. (Stank face)
European guy: I’m not trying to be I just, I lived in Africa for a while and you look like you are from Angola.
Me: Where are you from?
European guy: Portugal
Me: #WhyAmIHavingThisConversation – oh really I actually have Portuguese ancestors as well.
European guy: Oh so we’re brothers (the direct Spanish translation of siblings is brothers)
This conversation continued for another 5 minutes are so and my thoughts were “why is he acting like he didn’t know about slavery. He’s from Portugal-your Portuguese ancestors were the ones who started the slave trade to the Americas- #BRAZIL hello”
The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade
The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade began around the mid-fifteenth century when Portuguese interests in Africa moved away from the fabled deposits of gold to a much more readily available commodity — slaves. By the seventeenth century the trade was in full swing, reaching a peak towards the end of the eighteenth century. It was a trade which was especially fruitful, since every stage of the journey could be profitable for merchants — the infamous triangular trade.
Who Started the Triangular Trade?
For two hundred years, 1440-1640, Portugal had a monopoly on the export of slaves from Africa. It is notable that they were also the last European country to abolish the institution – although, like France, it still continued to work former slaves as contract laborers, which they called libertos or engagés à temps. It is estimated that during the 4 1/2 centuries of the trans-Atlantic slave trade, Portugal was responsible for transporting over 4.5 million Africans (roughly 40% of the total).
I was wondering what your thoughts are about this. Please leave a comment about the conversation and how you would have responded.
Also please send out a quick PSA to your European friends about the African slave trade to the Americas. Thank you. FYI this is the second time I’ve had a conversation like this at an Internations event.
*** I have met really great people at the Internations Events and will continue to go =)