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Publisher's Summary

After the Confederacy falls, newly freed slave Rutherford Calhoun is eager to avoid marrying a prim schoolteacher and boards the first ship he finds moored at a New Orleans port. Unbeknownst to Calhoun, the vessel is a slave ship enroute to Africa. On the return trip, Calhoun is put to work as a cabin boy and quickly assists the newly captured slaves in revolting against the drunken crew. This compelling adventure is filled with a perfect blend of colorful narrative, historical romance and suspense.

©1990 Charles Johnson (P)2002 Recorded Books, LLC

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great book, convencing performance

What did you love best about Middle Passage?

This book is a great combination of intellectual imagination, artistic skill, and fun. The performer was very convincing in a complex and difficult first person novel where much depends on how the narrator is presented.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Middle Passage?

there are many, but one that stands out is when the protagonist has an encounter with a captive African god.

What about Dion Graham’s performance did you like?

Graceful move from profound philosophical ideas to playful sarcasm in African American intellectual vernacular.

If you could rename Middle Passage, what would you call it?

The fateful voyage of the Republic

Any additional comments?

I would like to hear more books by Charles Johnson. His book "Dreamer" about Martin Luther King Jr. would be a great pick.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Communism, Capitalism, & Charles Johnson

This is an outstanding work worthy of critical review next to such works as Foucault's Discipline & Punishment and Hutcheon's The Politics of Postmodernism. Not many great historiographic meta fictions exist to rival this one, and few there be that live to exceed its profound call to the issues of capitalistic enslavement and social injustice.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Ingrid A
  • Saint Louis, MO, United States
  • 10-17-17

Unique Story, Wonderfully Told!

Middle Passage's plot is unlike anything I've encountered and I enjoyed it thoroughly. The protagonist in this first-person narrated novel is a great story-teller with an extraordinary background that gives him an erudite, down-home manner of speaking. His development over the course of the book was entertaining to witness. The actor who narrates the novel, Dion Graham, did an outstanding job! This is one example where I'm sure listening to a book left me more satisfied than I think reading would have.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful