Earlier this year I read Benito Cereno, a story write by Herman Melville. It is based off a true story about Captain Delano, a ship captain from Massachusetts that see a boat floating off in the distance and sees if it needs help. It was a slave ship. When he gets on the ship, he learns that they had no food or water and they had been stuck out at sea after getting caught in a storm and lots of their crew died. There are some things that surprise him when he is observing the ship. The first is that the slaves on the ship walk around with no chains or anything and are free to basically do what they want. He found this to be weird but he rationalized it by thinking that the captain of this ship was just easy on his slaves. Another thing that Captain Delano was strange about the boat was that the slave Baba was so close to the captain of the ship all the time. He found it weird that Babo would never leave the captains side, even when Captain Delano was making it clear that he wanted to speak to the other captain privately. He took this as Babo just being a loyal and attentive servant. In the end of the story though, it is revealed that the slaves had overpowered the slave traders and taken control of the ship.
In the story Captain Delano is a good example of Northern racism at the time. Although he doesn’t have slaves, he definitely doesn’t think that enslaved people were the same a white people. There are many things that looking back at in the book should make it clear to Captain Delano that the slaves had taken over the ship. Because of his internalized racism though, he is not able to to conceive of the idea that the slaves were capable of taking over the ship. He knows that something weird is going on but doesn’t know what it is. He even thinks for a bit that the people on the ship are pirates but after he learns that they slaves had taken over ship he is more scared of that idea then he was when he thought they were pirates. There as a few different ways that the book Benito Cereno could be interpreted and there are counts details that add to the books interesting commentary on slavery and racism.
This is a very interesting article which talks about how African Americans can connect with their roots by making a trip back to Africa. This article is written in the form of a reflection by the author who talks about comfortable he was connecting with his roots. Ghana has started a development called the year of return where it encourages black people from all over the Diaspora to visit. To commemorate the 400-year anniversary of the arrival of the first enslaved Africans to English North America in 1619, President Nana Akufo-Addo has encouraged descendants of Africans who were enslaved in the Americas to return to the country. The author also talks about elements of African heritage such as the food, customs, and various traditions. The author makes an interesting claim when he says that “, I would be one drop in the sea of black people at every event I attended and in every social situation. I wouldn’t be subjected to as many off-color remarks and subtly bigoted insults. I wouldn’t have to question whether I should respond to those or stay quiet to avoid being judged through the lens of racist stereotypes. I wouldn’t wonder whether people would think I’d been hired as a token rather than for my potential” I was very glad that the author felt a sense of belonging even though he had not even stayed in the continent. I believe that efforts have to be made to ensure that Black Americans have the opportunity to connect with their roots
With playoff hockey season in full affect, I started supporting my home team and watching some of the Bruins games again. It would be hard not to notice the lack of diversity in the NHL. There is very little diversity in both the fans of the sport, and the players. The first black hockey player in the NHL was Willie O’Ree, a Canadian that joined the Boston Bruins in 1958. That is almost 10 years after Jackie Robinson joined the MLB. Out of the over 700 roaster spots in the NHL in 2018, only around 30 were filled by players of African descent making it around 4 percent. If we were just talking about African Americans, the number would be less than 1 percent. There are a lot of different theories on why hockey lacks diversity. While it is true that many players in the NHL come from northern European countries like Finland, Sweden, and Russia, 26 percent are American and 45 percent are Canada. Some say that part of it is regional. The places with the biggest emphasis on hockey in America is the north, states like Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Massachusetts. These states tend to have less black people living there in general. Other people think that there just isn’t a strong enough black culture in hockey yet. Black children don’t see people that look like them playing hokey so they don’t play hockey and then the same thing will happen to the next generation.
Right now P.K. Subban is the best and most famous black hockey player. He is a Canadian who signed a 72 million dollar 8 year deal with Montreal in 2014 but is now playing for the Nashville predators. He has played 9 seasons of major league hockey so far, has over 400 points as a defender, and played in the NHL all star game in 2016, 2017 and 2018. He has been vocal about not having many black hockey players to look up to when he was a kid and wanting to make sure that he is a good role. He says that he wants to show kids, especially black kids, that they can play whatever sport they want, regardless of race.
This is a very interesting article which talks about how South Africa’s business sector is dominated by the white minority. The article talks about how the South African government which consists of the black majority ANC has sought to provide opportunities for the country’s majority black population to achieve greater economic status and influence.
I was very blow by some of the statistics such as black South Africans makeup nearly 80% of the economically active population, but they hold just 14% of top management jobs. It is very shocking that even after the apartheid there seems to be a gap in economic class. South Africa’s labor minister commented on these findings, “A white, male-dominant organizational culture still prevails. I am very shocked that apartheid indirectly exists in Africa. It makes me question the governments in these countries who are made up of a majority of black people. This issue is very similar to that of the United States, the only problem being that the US is a white majority. I believe African leaders have to rectify this situation. They owe it to their people, this is a complete disgrace to the struggles of great leaders such as Kwame Nkrumah and Nelson Mandela.