The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings - Chapter 11 Summary & Analysis

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Chapter 11 Summary and Analysis

Reluctantly, Equiano takes another sea voyage, this time to Cadiz. En route, the ship hits a rock and nearly sinks, but Equiano is unafraid to die and he amazes others with his calmness. The ship's crew is joined by another crew and together the crews free the ship and it gets repaired. On the way back from Cadiz, Equiano has a dream that a little boat will be discovered by the crew, and sure enough, the next day the crew happens upon a little lifeboat with eleven near-dead men packed in it. Equiano's crew saves the men, and they thank God for their deliverance.

Back in London, Equiano's hairdressing master, Dr. Irving, purchases a sloop and means to sail to Jamaica to start a plantation. Irving asks Equiano to go, and he consents to the voyage, believing it might be an opportunity to conduct some missionary work. On the voyage, Equiano takes it upon himself to teach a "Musquito Indian," Prince George, in the ways of Christianity, and the young man responds enthusiastically to Equiano's teachings.

However, during the voyage the white men on board make fun of Prince George for following Equiano and believing in God and Satan. This makes Prince George reluctant to take any further lessons from Equiano. When Equiano tells Prince George that he either believes in Christ or risks an eternity in Hell, the Indian becomes very depressed and only wants to be alone. Equiano states that Satan intervened in the form of the mocking white men to ruin Prince George's salvation.

They arrive in Jamaica, and then take a trip to the Musquito Coast to drop off Prince George and his kin. Equiano and Dr. Irving and the crew eventually scout out a place called Cape Gracias a Dios, where they plan the plantation. Their boat is sent off for further trading and unfortunately gets captured by the Spanish, but they soldier on. The native Indians take a liking to Dr. Irving, as he cures their snake bites and other maladies. They have a large dance and feast to impress Irving and the crew.

The rainy season comes, overflowing the river and washing away much of the new plantation's crop. Equiano becomes depressed, not only because of the crop but because he feels he is far from God living in a heathen society, and so he asks Irving to give his consent to Equiano going back to Europe, which Irving reluctantly grants.

Equiano has two horrible experiences in trying to get back to Jamaica and finally England. On the first trip, a man named Hughes takes exception to a free black man and ties Equiano up, swearing he will sell him into slavery. Equiano escapes this injustice only to board another sloop whose captain promises to go to Jamaica but instead continues south along the Musquito Coast. This captain becomes crazy, beating Equiano and others and threatening to blow up the ship by sticking a hot poker into the gunpowder barrel. Equiano escapes this mad man as well, and finally gets a decent captain and ship to take him to England. Dr. Irving, Equiano later learns, dies from eating a poisoned fish. He arrives back in England on January 7th, 1777.

This section contains 544 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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