The Queen's Slave Trader: John Hawkyns, Elizabeth I, and the Trafficking in Human Souls Paperback – 22 Nov 2005
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“Hazlewood’s book is a tour de force.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))
“A gripping tale and a sterling analysis of England’s first foray into the nastiest of human enterprises.” (Kirkus Reviews)
“[An] engrossing, well-researched account.” (Booklist)
“Hazlewood writes with precision, passion and the ease born of familiarity with his subject.” (Cleveland Plain Dealer)
About the Author
Nick Hazlewood has a degree in history and, in 1994, left his job with the trade union UNISON to travel throughout South and Central America. He is a freelance journalist and writer and lives in Madrid.
Top Customer Reviews
It also gives a lot of details about John Hawkins' beginnings. The reader should take into account the book focuses on the initial
enterprises John Hawkins undertook, not on his whole career, even if there is information about it as well. I find that a good approach: instead of doing a superficial account of Hawkins' whole life,
the author gives an excellent description of how it was like when the Britons got involved in the tragic trade on humans to be taken to America. He describes what happened with the whole enterprise.
I am Venezuelan and my ancestors are Europeans, native Americans and black African slaves, like with most Venezuelans. I was born close to one of the places described in this book and it was particularly interesting for me to read more details about those times.
There is a good, even if short, description about how the Portuguese became active in Africa, about how the Spaniards tried to keep their monopoly on trade with the New World and how their policies on slaves started to shift depending on commercial interests.
All in all, there was a lot of excellent research done here. I would have preferred to see a couple of maps, even if I know the Caribbean well: maps help visualize a lot. Still, the book gets 5 stars from me.
However the author is carried away by the facts he has gathered and at times it is difficult to absorb the rather dull analytical pace of the text.
By describing the facts of the preparation and journeys of John Hawkins the reader is left to imagine how terrible it must have been for the captured Africans. The connivance of Spanish settlers in the West Indies is another interesting fact, as is the participation of certain Portugese based in Tenerife.
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