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The Black Atlantic African Diaspora
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How the African Diaspora came 

to be:

Home is the continent of Africa, the "Motherland".
Africa is the cradle of civilization from which all human beings descend. We are all Africans.

Below are maps of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade and the Indian Ocean African Slave Trade, (from 1440 to 1865), in which African people were transported via slaveships and continuously enslaved throughout the Diaspora.  Many were medicine people, priests, and priestesses.  Some were royalty.  All were God's divine people, (precious human beings treated inhumanely as name-less, history-less, religion-less property).  A distortion of reality.  We brought many of our traditions with us: spiritual, musical, oral, cultural, etc., although most of whatever is African has been distorted and suppressed, and devalued in the world, despite our history since before time began and thousands of years before western civilization.  Indeed Africa was the first civilization, root of all others, cradle of human kind.

Map of the Trans-Atlantic African Slave Trade
Africans were kidnapped & enslaved from West Africa & West Central Africa.

The image to the right illustrates  how our ancestors were inhumanely kidnapped, taken prisoner, transported in the hulls of ships from Africa,  and sold into slavery throughout the Diaspora during the Middle Passage of the Trans-atlantic Slave Trade and the Indian Ocean Slave Trade, which lasted nearly 400 years.  Over half, estimated at 100 million, did not survive the voyage.  Hence we term it "the African Holocaust".  Many more died from the harsh conditions of slavery.

Below are chains that held enslaved African adults, (photo courtesy of Brian Breye's Museum In Black, (formerly in the cultural mecca of Leimert Park, & now in the historic Dunbar Hotel on Central Avenue in Los Angeles, CA).

These chains held enslaved African adults captive.
Photo courtesy of Brian Breye's Museum In Black in historic Dunbar Hotel, Central Ave., Los Angeles

Below are colonized Africans in Ghana, within West Africa, first in Africa to gain independence, (from Britain) later, during the 1950s, when Kwame Nkrumah, an imprisoned freedom fighter, became the first black president, winning the majority vote even while still falsely imprisoned.  Other African nations followed suit in gaining independence from European colonizers who demonized all things African, (especially African spirituality), to maintain political and psychological control over African people and Africa's vast resources.

Africa suffered the effects of colonization also.
This is a family in Ghana during colonization throughout Africa.

To the Right is Harriet Tubman, (born "Araminta"), a former slave, who escaped slavery, then risked her life and freedom to lead hundreds to freedom as a stationmaster via the Underground Railroad network.  Author, Catherine Clinton quoted Tubman as saying that she "consulted with God", was firm in the conviction of supernatural help, and believed her ability was a kind of "second sight", "something she inherited from her father, who could predict the weather and predicted the war with Mexico".  Tubman's gifts included "dreaming", as she stated, "she first met rebellion leader, Nat Turner in a dream, prior to meeting him in person".  This is 'underground railroad spirit'.

The Indian Ocean African Slave Trade
African men, women, & children were also transported & enslaved across the Indian Ocean.

Our ancestors chained together on slave ships.
Unable to move, under-fed to prevent escape, raped, thrown over, killed,etc.

Below are chains that held enslaved African children, (photo courtesy of Brian Breye's Museum In Black, Los Angeles, CA).

This chain held enslaved African children captive.
Photo courtesy of Brian Breye's Museum In Black in historic Dunbar Hotel, Central Ave., Los Angeles

Below are enslaved Africans in America, within the United States. Post-slavery they became sharecroppers, then many migrated north to find scarce work and to escape "jim crow" racism and oppression,  separate and unequal "apartheid in the U.S." and the "new slavery" "prison industrial complex" designed to criminalize innocent men, women, and children and keep them enslaved in the south.  Unfortunately this institutionalized racism and opression continues today in various forms and degrees.  (Their descendants are now African Americans).

Africans were enslaved throughout the Americas.
These are Africans in America (U.S.) enslaved, who later were sharecropper farmers.

Below is Harriet Tubman, her husband, & others.
She led hundreds and all her family she could locate to freedom.

Below is  the Ba-kongo-gram symbol of South Central African cosmology retained and used to call upon the protection of ancestors throughout the diaspora, during slavery, (as Africans were brought to the Americas from West Africa and South Central Africa).  The Bakongogram has been found in secret areas in slave quarters and in homes of former slaves, in gardens, on sacred medicine colonoware containers, and at burial sites as T-shaped headstones, representing the bottom half of the cosmogram which symbolized passage through water into the spirit world for those who had passed on.

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*All photos of Crystal by Michael Green:  http://michaelgreenthervexpert.blogspot.com 

All rights reserved by Crystal BlackCreek Carlisle for URSPIRIT c2009