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The protagonist of the novel, Aminata is a black slave who was orginally born in Nigeria but was taken by slave traders at the tender age of 11 and sent to America. She goes on to bear two children and eventually becomes a spokesperson against slavery by the end of the novel.
Aminata's love interest and later husband, he is also sent to America together with Aminata as a slave. However, after his escape from a life of slavery, his ship to Nova Scotia (where he and Aminata originally intended to begin a new life) sank mid-voyage and he perished at sea.
Aminata and Chekura's first child. He is separated from his mother shortly after his birth and dies not long after the separation.
Aminata's first owner and the owner of a plantation in America. He finds out of Aminata's illicit relationship with Chekura and punishes her by raping her. He also goes on to orchestrate the separation of Aminata and her first child Mamadu, in collusion with fellow slave owner Solomon Lindo.
A slave owner whom Aminata originally warms up to due to the fact that unlike Appleby, he and his wife allowed her to read and write openly. However, following the death of his wife and child, his relationship with Aminata falls out due to a revelation that he helped Appleby orchestrate Aminata's separation from her child. He later brings Aminita to New York in an attempt to restore their relationship.
Aminata's second child whom she gives birth to in Nova Scotia. She is abducted by a wealthy white family and forced to work as a servant. However, she manages to escape later on and becomes a teacher.
Captain John Clarkson
A British Naval Officer who gathers black people to be brought to Sierra Leone with promises of establishing a safe haven for black people. However, his plan fails and he offers to bring Aminata to London to speak out against slavery, an offer which is only accepted much later by Aminata.
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Aminata wants tomake her way back to Bayo. Temne rejects her request to take her inland so she is forced to to accompany a slave trader enroute to the inner part of Africa, where she can find her village. This was Aminata's only option if she...