The novel of the middle passage is about slave trade in America. Calhoun Rutherford is the main character is undergoes the most transformation in the story. He is a former slave who was freed and his first experiences of freedom are characterized with lavish. A ship called Republic is the major symbolism in this novel. Many activities happen in ship before it capsizes. This vessel contains the place where most transformations take place. The ship itself undergoes changes and finally capsizes. The story in this novel is based on the positive changes happening to the characters. Different characters have their experiences contributing to their transformation (54).
The quotation in page thirty-six was spoken by Peter cringle. He was one of the passengers Rutherford met in the ship. Rutherford thought highly of him. He considered Cringle to be an extremely moral man. Cringle quotation can be used to communicate to human being about their character and personality. He personifies the ship and uses it to describe the changes happening. People in the ship were transformed from bad to good character. When he said the vessel would not be same as it left New Orleans. He was addressing Rutherford and meant he will be transformed before he goes back to New Orleans (101).
Transformation can happen to government and nations in many ways. Nations development and enhancement of living standards is a transformation. There are many eras, which were marked with significant changes. The transformations happened technologically, economically, industrially, agriculture and in education. Today, governments have changed appearance of their countries. They have added public facilities and improved governance of their nations. The government is more focused in the welfare of the citizens than the eras before. Cringle was also referring to the ship when he said these words. The ship was actually in a poor condition mechanically and Captain Falcon made efforts to fix it (Johnson, 82).
Calhoun Rutherford is a manumission who was a slave in Illinois. He became lavish after his freedom. He has a girlfriend who intends to change him positively. According to Rutherford, “Of all the things that drive men to sea, the most common disaster, I’ve come to learn, is women” (1). He decides to run away from his girlfriend. His voyage marks the beginning of his transformation. Rutherford discovers the ship is off to Africa to get slaves. He is not impressed by this action because he has experienced this kind of life. Rutherford becomes friendly to the slaves and he learns their culture and language. He also teaches their tribesman English. He acts as a father to a young girl and is friendly to the mother (112).
Allmuseri considers him the most approachable of the Americans. His transformation is inspired by Peter Cringle who Rutherford thinks is highly moral. Rutherford goes back home and faces his adversaries. They finally marry with her old girlfriend, Isadora. This woman also goes through some physical transformation after they reunite with Rutherford. She had a slim attractive body, unlike how she was fat when they first met. She has is more loving and gentle than before. Initially, she had blackmailed Rutherford to marry her. After the reunion in Juno ship, she becomes more caring (Johnson, 97).
The people of Allmuseri show transformation in the ship. They decide to carry out mutiny. When they were taken captives, they looked weak and fearful. During the mutiny, they were confident and most of them were ready to die. In fact, they had captured Rutherford but the tribesman pleaded for him to be spared. The god of the Allmuseri was strong and wise. He led his people to defeat captivity. He was a good leader who advised his people on self-conduct. After the mutiny, people were injured and they felt insecure. The god protected his people and assured them of security (Johnson, 167).
All characters mentioned in this essay show transformation compared to their previous lives. For instance, Rutherford thought life was about living without caring. He says, “Did I love Isadora? Really, I could not say. I’d always felt people fell in love as they might fall into a hole; it was something I thought a smart man avoided.” He thought marriage was a bad idea for his lifestyle. The voyage changes his perspective and he even accepts to marry. Other characters like Allmuseri people are transformed from slaves who look fearless, to brave people who carry out mutiny.
Johnson, Charles. The middle passage. California, CA: Scribner. 2012. Print.
Johnson, Charles. Middle Passage. New York: Atheneum, 1990. Print.