Slavery and African Born Slaves Essay

1353 Words Nov 30th, 2008 6 Pages
Sankofa Critical Review
Sankofa is a movie about, above all else, the unification and spiritual oneness of all African peoples no matter where they are in the world and no matter what oppression they face. To develop this theme, the movie takes us through the lives of several Africans that were taken from their homes and enslaved. It stars a young woman, Mona, who knows very little of her identity as an African at first, but is transformed into a slave named Shola who works on a plantation where she gains first hand knowledge of the struggles of her people. She meets slaves who are African born and who fight to rebel in order to resist the temptation to assimilate and forget their true, singular identity as Africans. In the
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Also, She is sheltered from the African born slaves for much of her life because she was made to work in the house, however as she befriends the slaves that work in the field she slowly learns more and more about her heritage. She is in awe of the strength and rebelliousness of the African born field slaves. They help her to separate herself from the identity she has built based on the society she grew up in. Early on in the film, she is seemingly content with her life and even though she is thought of as inferior and is raped and oppressed, she seems to be mostly content with an underlying feeling that her situation is unavoidable. The other slaves who know of freedom and a better place and ache to return begin to instill in her these new feelings of rebellion and hatred for her oppressive masters. In a sense, Nunu and Shango help to deconstruct the social reality which she has created for herself and the helplessness that comes along with it in order to instill one of pride for her heritage, intangibleness of her true being, and temporariness of her situation instead.
The inverse character of the slaves in the field that help her in liberating herself is another slave who is the son of Nunu (who was raped on her voyage to America at fourteen) named Joe. Joe’s mother is a very strong, rebellious, and helpful character in the movie who is well respected and looked up to by many of the other slaves. She is a powerful force in the community, feared

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