Ghosts of Amistad by Tony Buba is based on Marcus Rediker’s The Amistad Rebellion:
An Atlantic Odyssey of Slavery and Freedom (Penguin, 2012). It chronicles a journey to Sierra Leone in 2013 to visit the home villages of the rebels who captured the slave schooner Amistad,to interview elders about local memory of the incident, and to search for the long-lost ruins of Lomboko, the slave trading factory where their cruel transatlantic voyage began.
The filmmakers rely on the knowledge of villagers, fishermen, and truck drivers to recover a lost history from below in the struggle against slavery, and to explore the African origins of the heroes of the Amistad incident.
Possible Questions to consider:
1. What is the premise of the film? What are the goals of the film makers? What do they hope to learn?
2. How do the locals receive the film makers? How are they able to make connections along their journey?
3. What do the people they interview know about the Amistad? What is their understanding of the impact of the slave trade in their lives? What about Colonization?
4. How does this film and the Amistad provide connections between slavery, Africa, and African culture?