This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Amistad Movie Essay

2147 words - 9 pages

Some five hundred years ago, ships began transporting millions of enslaved Africans across the Atlantic Ocean to the Americas. This massive population movement helped create the African Diaspora in the New World. Many did not survive the horrible ocean journey. Enslaved Africans represented many different peoples, each with distinct cultures, religions, and languages. Most originated from the coast or the interior of West Africa, between present-day Senegal and Angola. Other enslaved peoples originally came from Madagascar and Tanzania in East Africa
In February of 1839, Portuguese slave hunters abducted a large group of Africans from Sierra Leone and shipped them to Havana, Cuba, a center for the slave trade. This abduction violated all of the treaties then in existence. Fifty-three Africans were purchased by two Spanish planters and put aboard the Cuban schooner Amistad for shipment to a Caribbean plantation. The Africans seized the ship, killed the captain and the cook, and ordered the planters to sail to Africa. In August 1839, the Amistad was seized off Long Island, NY, by the U.S. brig Washington. The planters were freed and the Africans were imprisoned in New Haven, CT, on charges of murder. Although the murder charges were dismissed, the Africans continued to be held in confinement as the focus of the case turned to salvage claims and property rights. President Van Buren was in favor of extraditing the Africans to Cuba. However, abolitionists in the North opposed extradition and raised money to defend the Africans. Claims to the Africans by the planters, the government of Spain, and the captain of the brig led the case to trial in the Federal District Court in Connecticut. The court ruled that the case fell within Federal jurisdiction and that the claims to the Africans as property were not legitimate because they were illegally held as slaves. The case went to the Supreme Court in January 1841, and former President John Quincy Adams argued the defendants' case. Adams defended the right of the accused to fight to regain their freedom. The Supreme Court decided in favor of the Africans, and 35 of them were returned to their homeland. The others died at sea or in prison while awaiting trial. http://www.archives.gov/digital_classroom/lessons/amistad_case/amistad_case.html
In a special document display in Washington, the National Archives and Records Administration is featuring two documents from its holdings that relate to the Amistad affair. The materials include John Quincy Adams' request, in his own hand, for papers relating to the lower court trials of the Amistad, January 23, 1841, and the Supreme Court decision United States v. the Amistad, March 9, 1841. The documents are incorporated into "American Originals: Part III," the major exhibition featuring milestone documents.
The dramatic story of the Amistad, which was featured in a major motion picture that opened in December, is found among the court records at the...

Find Another Essay On amistad movie

"A Review Of Amistad"

894 words - 4 pages when Cinque and 52 of his people were abducted, they experienced a shock which they carried over even into the Amistad. The owners of the first ship were Portuguese slavers, but as the movie shows us, it was Cinque's own people who perpetrated the kidnapping. This was often how slavery actually occurred- gifts of firearms, money, alcohol, etc. would be traded by slavers to African leaders in exchange for slaves. Thus, the men who were beating

Amistad Reflection Essay

670 words - 3 pages the freedom they deserve. Amistad portrays to its audience a realistic visual of the historic times in the United States during a time that slavery was under large debate. Speilberg creates a sympathetic feel towards the slaves and makes the audience root for their justice. This movie not only opens one’s eyes to the terrible horrors of slavery and the injustice it brought, but also to appreciate our own individual freedom. This film helped me to

Amistadthe Movie

868 words - 3 pages Amistadthe Movie Amistad Being an African American male, I have been told somewhat the story about slavery. I mean of course I have been told of the Martin Luther Kings, the Malcolm Xs, and the Rosa Parks and the many struggles and life threatening obstacles they went through for all blacks to become free from opression. Before watching the movie Amistad, I never really knew of the boat rides, the chaining of women and men together

The Inferior Social Class: A Historical Observation of Slavery

860 words - 4 pages most formidable litigator, representing our captured slaves in the US Supreme Court, former president John Quincy Adams (Archives, 2014). Throughout this eye opening and revolting story, observation were made that can be interpreted in many ways, however, what was evident throughout this grappling movie, was that in time of disparities, we reluctantly seek out methods of assurance. Interpretational Conclusion Amistad is a movie that brings to

Slaves by Stephen Spielberg

445 words - 2 pages talents. The horror and shocking images shown throughout the movie are not "watered down", as that would then take away from the necessary element that gives this rendition of Amistad a most spectacular point of view on the everyday suffering and maltreatment of the highly deprived slaves of Africa in the mid-1800's. The intense politics are indeed a genuine representation of the delicate balance of power that was disputed over all through the 1800's involving the infamous slave problem that led to one this country's worst moments in history.

Amistad: Natural Law vs. Positive Law

993 words - 4 pages Throughout the movie “Amistad,” directed by Steven Spielberg, conflict between Natural Law and Positive Law appears to be an underlying theme. The story is of a group of African slaves that effected a mutiny on their slave ship. After killing many Spaniards, the African slaves were then captured and put on trial. The story is based on a historical trial which took place in the United States during the years of 1939-1940. This trial

A Respectable Trade and Amistad

4111 words - 16 pages A Respectable Trade and Amistad An unfortunate part of history and labor involves European, American, and African slave traders engaging in the lucrative trade in humans. The movies, A Respectable Trade and Amistad show two slightly different slants to the same evil side of the concept of slavery. They point to an all too realistically gruesome picture of this despicable economic system. Although slavery contains some similarities to

film industry..comparing hollywood and bollywood(indian film industry)

525 words - 2 pages , Steven Spielberg is one who makes clean movies like Jurassic park, Amistad, Saving private Ryan etc, in which he concentrates only on the subject of the movie; he never diverts the story by keeping sex and vulgar language. An example of a commercial film is "Final destination", which is suspense thriller .An example of complete action film is "Die hard", and for comedy is "The Mask".In Bollywood a typical commercial film means the film with songs

Biography on Steven Spielberg (1038 Words)

1037 words - 4 pages success to his advantage Dreamworks SKG was formed. Dreamworks SKG was the 1st new movie studio to form in Hollywood for over 75 years. Backed up with heaps of experienced people from the entertainment industry Dreamworks promised to be large. Amistad was the 1st film to be directed under the label. Nevertheless, it was released at the same time as Titanic, making it look like a failure, when in fact it didn't go to bad at the box office. Recent

Steven Spielberg

1509 words - 6 pages successful. In 1974, he received his first break for The Sugarland Express. The film went on to win a Cannes Film Festival Award for best screenplay. The following year saw JAWS explode. This very successful horror film, depicting a man-eating shark, captured the attention of the world and has become part of contemporary pop culture. The movie was nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars and won several Oscars for technical categories and for its very

Spanish Language Films

834 words - 3 pages Spanish Language FilmsFor my first Spanish video I watched Y Tu Mama Tambien. I saw this movie on Wednesday night with one of my friends from chemistry class.(a). La Pelicula es muy interesante. La pelicula hablaron muchos de relaciones. La Pelicula es triste y feliz. Julio y Tenoch tuvieron una amistad especial, ellos eran mejores amigos. Pero, en el fin, ellos no vieron al otro mucho.(b). The film was based on two friends who ended up taking a

Similar Essays

Amistad Movie Analysis

1206 words - 5 pages The film Amistad is based on a true event that occurred in 1839. It is about a mutiny by recently captured slaves, who take over a ship known as La Amistad, and the legal battle that followed regarding their freedom. The movie begins by showing many Africans chained together on the lower deck of La Amistad. They manage to break free and go to the upper deck and attack the sailors, leading a mutiny and taking over the ship. They leave two men

Amistad Movie Review

654 words - 3 pages "Amistad" is a brilliant portrayal of the trials and tribulations of a group of illegally taken slaves from Sierra Leone. The movie covers the capture, the revolt aboard "La Amistad", and all the trials (Circuit and Supreme). The movie is very accurate in it it's telling,, overall very entertaining and, has very good acting. The social classes in this movie can be seen very clearly. Throughout the entirety of the movie it is easy to tell

A Movie Review On Amistad And It's Relation To U.S. History

860 words - 3 pages AMISTADThe movie Amistad, It gave me a good idea of the Amistad case that had happened in 1839-1841. Amistad was a movie about real events that had happened. A large group of Africans were taken as slaves, sold and headed off to their land. I hey took control over the ship at one point but were captured by the Americans and held in jail until they got their freedom back. I think this movie really portrayed how slaves were treated back then

Amistad And Jacobs Essay

1433 words - 6 pages ended up going all the way to the Supreme Court. Though there are differences in the movie “Amistad” and actual events, the movie is compelling and very close to the reality of what happened. Disturbingly, the case was not about the human beings that were the central focus of the story – it centered solely on the issue of “property rights”. Hundreds of Africans were captured illegally from Mendeland, West Africa by Portuguese slave traders