| June 29, 2011 at 7:27 pm | Tags: African slavery
, Goree Island
, Guyana Cultural Association
, Guyana Online
, Guyanese Associations
, Guyanese Online
| Categories: Associations
, Racial Conflict
| URL: http://wp.me/pO3ui-1oi
The Slave Narrative as told by Goree Island guides - what is happening now?
By: Guyana -born Muriel Glasgow, now resident in New York - June 2011
Many of us have an understanding about the Slave Trade and the Slave Routes. I thought I did, but despite the fact that I visited slave houses on Goree Island in Senegal as well as castles in Ghana and listened to the guided narrative, it was not until this time on Goree Island last week, that I was able to separate emotions from overcoming my ability to listen dispassionately.
And this is what I heard -
- Africans rounded up families and brought them to the Goree Island to be sold. (I no longer was lost in the why of this)
- Upon arrival at the slave house, the families were separated - Men to their cells, women to their cells, children 6-17 years old to their cells.
- Children under 6 years old were killed/eliminated as there was no room on the slave ship for unproductive groups; men under 60 kg in weight fitted this category and they were also gotten rid of.
The able-bodied men 60kg and over were shipped off to Louisiana; the women were sent to Cuba, Brazil; the children 6-17 sent to Haiti and the West Indies. This was the Goree Island narrative. Other slave house narratives might speak of different landing points.
What intrigued me during this visit was the plight of the under-sixes and of the women, for any woman arriving pregnant to the slave house was sent back to the village. If a woman was impregnated by the colonials, she was also sent back to the villages.
The plight of women and the under six population exists to this day - the under six population is also seen as unproductive and investments are not made or seem to be overlooked as regards their education, development, well being.
This is where I believe that countries should be focusing their investment dollars if they are to win the future in education as President Obama alludes to.
If they are to develop a cohort from the under-six population from which scientists, technologists, engineers, mathematicians, could derive instead of offering up the usual fare of delinquents, street children, fodder for the prison population, or limiting their scope of possibility to athletics and entertainment.
Children on Slave Ship:Most of those who were transported to the "New World" from Africa via the Middle Passage were under 16 years of age.
I would like to suggest that the Guyana Cultural Association of New York (GCA), begin a series on our history, to help us in eliminating the pain from the memory and replacing pain with strategy as we go forward to create a better world, culturally, for the legacy of Guyana's children.