Roquinaldo Ferreira. 2012. Cross-Cultural Exchange in the Atlantic World: Angola and Brazil during the Era of the Slave Trade

By Cohen, Raymond; Cohen, Justin | African Studies Quarterly, December 2015 | Go to article overview

Roquinaldo Ferreira. 2012. Cross-Cultural Exchange in the Atlantic World: Angola and Brazil during the Era of the Slave Trade


Cohen, Raymond, Cohen, Justin, African Studies Quarterly


Roquinaldo Ferreira. 2012. Cross-Cultural Exchange in the Atlantic World: Angola and Brazil during the Era of the Slave Trade. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 248 pp.

Cross-Cultural Exchange in the Atlantic World is an excellent read for researchers and academics around the world who focused on this topic but less so for the casual reader on the evolution of Angola and Brazil due to the overall time it may take the reader to follow the multiple stories lines going on simultaneously. This book review will show that the material builds upon itself throughout the book and does not come to a dramatic climax but an awakening through the piecing together of many individuals life stories and cultural difference that make both countries unique but similar. The readability and amount of details that Ferreira extracted from historical datasets at the micro-level allows one to key in on fundamental connections that experts may gloss over at the macro-level. Ferreira's research seemed to be based on the maxim that history in only a compilation of various personal lives and that without the individuals there would be no history. This review will cover how the author's examination of the basic aspects of life enhanced the overall delivery on these topics between the countries during the era of the slave trade. An essential aspect that distinguishes this book apart from others on this subject is readability.

The difference in readability in this book is caused by the presentation of the details of the personal lives in a methodical, not chronological, style addressing the similarities that exist at the micro-social level among citizens of Portugal, Angola, and Brazil. Although Ferreira's efforts seemed to capture the heart of some of the common people at the core of the countries trifecta it focused primarily on Angola and Brazil during the late 1600s until the beginning of the 1800s. The details revealed at this level on the vibrant personalities on both the African and American continents seem to come to life over the 248 pages as the reader pieces together the threads that are strategically woven throughout this book. Although the details are miniscule and complex the author provides these facts in easy everyday language. Another aspect that led one to truly appreciate this book is the amount of details that the author has shown though the selection of the each chapter. …

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