Barracoon : the story of the last "black cargo"

Large Print
Published 2018
Item Details
Summary:

In 1927, Zora Neale Hurston went to Plateau, Alabama, just outside Mobile, to interview eighty-six-year-old Cudjo Lewis. Of the millions of men, women, and children transported from Africa to America as slaves, Cudjo was then the only person alive to tell the story of this integral part of the nation's history. Hurston was there to record Cudjo's firsthand account of the raid that led to his capture and bondage fifty years after the Atlantic slave trade was outlawed in the United States. In 1931, Hurston returned to Plateau, the African-centric community three miles from Mobile founded by Cudjo and other former slaves from his ship. Spending more than three months there, she talked in depth with Cudjo about the details of his life. During those weeks, the young writer and the elderly formerly enslaved man ate peaches and watermelon that grew in the backyard and talked about Cudjo's past--memories from his childhood in Africa, the horrors of being captured and held in a barracoon for selection by American slavers, the harrowing experience of the Middle Passage packed with more than 100 other souls aboard the Clotilda, and the years he spent in slavery until the end of the Civil War. Based on those interviews, featuring Cudjo's unique vernacular, and written from Hurston's perspective with the compassion and singular style that have made her one of the preeminent American authors of the twentieth-century, Barracoon masterfully illustrates the tragedy of slavery and of one life forever defined by it. Offering insight into the pernicious legacy that continues to haunt us all, black and white, this poignant and powerful work is an invaluable contribution to our shared history and culture.

ISBN:
9780062864369
006286436X
Edition:
First HarperLuxe edition.
Description:
xxxiv, 209 pages (large print) : 1 illustration ; 23 cm
large print
Notes:
Foreword by Alice Walker -- on jacket.
Includes bibliographical references (pages [204]--209).
Contents:
Foreword. Those who love us never leave us alone with our grief : reading Barracoon : the story of the last "black cargo" / by Alice Walker
Introduction
Editor's note
Barracoon. Preface
Introduction
THe king arrives
Barracoon
Slavery
Freedom
Marriage
Kossula learns about law
Alone
Appendix. Takkoi or Attako--children's game
Stories Kossula told me
The monkey and the camel
Story of de Jona
Now disa Abraham fadda de faitful
The lion woman
Afterword and additional materials / edited by Deborah G. Plant.
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