The Pervasive Effects of Generational Trauma on Black People.

The Wicked Orchard by Sidra Owens
7 min readDec 12, 2022
LibraryOfCongress https://unsplash.com/photos/WzPxmB_tRlw

Yesterday, I read an article by KourtneyNicoleWrites, entitled “Are Black people capable of Introspection?” I knew that I wanted to respond with an article of my own, but it took me roughly 24 hours to get my thoughts together. In quick summary, the author answers her own question, with which I agree. Yes, Black people are capable of introspection, with therapy, but for me the follow up to the short answer left a lot to be desired. She references the need for therapy several times, and I don’t disagree. Black people in this country would benefit greatly from therapy, but not because we deflect our issues narcissistically, as she eludes to, but because as a whole, Black people are deeply traumatized and abused. I’m going to run through a brief history lesson to make my point.

Let’s compared Black people in America to a person who experiences trauma at an early age. The United States is a young country, especially when compared to many other nations in the world. This country was built upon the backs and with the blood of enslaved Africans and later African Americans. So in comparison, African Americans, as a people, are a young people; who unfortunately were deeply traumatized during their formative years.

That trauma was in the form of slavery.

African peoples were sold to or captured by Europeans, and brought to this country stacked like lumber; many of which did not survive the journey. Those that did survive were stripped of their identity, their dignity, their autonomy and more to be forced to work in a foreign land for foreign people, who did nothing by torture and denigrate them at every turn.

But the trauma did not end there. Remember this is just the beginning. Then those captured Africans were forced to breed and produce the first African Americans (Black people), even though that isn’t what they were called at the time, of course.

Compounded with the damage caused by slavery, in general, they were forced to remain uneducated, because we all know once someone begins to learn, it gets harder to keep them under your thumb. But they were allowed access to the bible, which basically taught them that their circumstances were ordained by God, and that if they can hold on and endure the savagery of their enslavers…

The Wicked Orchard by Sidra Owens

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