Monday, May 20, 2019

African samurai: The enduring legacy of a black warrior in feudal Japan

Yasuke was a slave turned samurai from Africa who lived in Japan in the sixteenth century. 

Words by Emiko Jozuka, CNN
Graphics by Natalie Leung, CNN

Hong Kong (CNN)When feudal Japan's most powerful warlord Nobunaga Oda met Yasuke, a black slave-turned-retainer, in 1581, he believed the man was a god.

Oda had never seen an African before. And like the locals in Japan's then-capital of Kyoto, he was awed by Yasuke's height, build and skin tone, according to Thomas Lockley, the author of "African Samurai: The True Story of Yasuke, a Legendary Black Warrior in Feudal Japan."  Read more >>