"The[ manners and customs of my country] have been implanted in me with great care, and made an impression on my mind, which time could not erase, and which all the adversity and variety of fortune I have since experienced, served only to rivet and record; for, whether the love of one's country be real or imaginary, or a lesson of reason, or an instinct of nature, I still look back with pleasure on the first scenes of my life, though that pleasure has been for the most part mingled with sorrow"
We had discussed in class that, even if the community of a nation is 'imagined' as Anderson says, it still effectively instills pride for one's country, and a bond between citizens of the country. How does this reconcile with this passage from Equiano's narrative, with the knowledge that Equiano may not have actually ever lived in Africa and danced the tribal dances? I personally felt that, whether this was Equiano's story or not, it is definitely someone's story, and still holds a lot of truth and authenticity. Perhaps, though Equiano claimed it has his own, it serves as the collective story of all the slaves brought to America from Africa, and although the author didn't personally experience it, many others did, and that's what makes the love of their country 'real'.