Young, enslaved, African, and poor, Abina Mansah was the kind of person you never learned about in history class. Today’s students are luckier. They can meet this bold, intelligent,  and pugnacious young woman in Abina, a digital education app designed around the 19th century documents that tell the story of Abina taking her master to court.


  • weaves together 6 animated movies, entertaining story, beautiful art, and important content
  • explores global issues through the personal experiences of the story’s characters
  • is aimed at the hearts and minds of high school students and teachers
  • helps students build key critical thinking and social studies skills


At its core is a brilliant movie adaptation of Abina’s story, charmingly voiced and animated by San Francisco State University students and teachers. The movie, embedded in an eReader, allows students to explore the global issues and personal experiences of Abina and others in the story. Teachers will love the accompanying instructional materials that include lesson plans, groupwork materials, and project designs.



From the text of Chapter 1

….Was Abina Mansah a slave? This is the question that lies at the heart of the court case upon which this history is based. In 1876 Abina went to court to prove that the man she had run away from, Quamina Eddoo, had illegally enslaved her. In the story of her life that she subsequently tells, Abina reveals that she had been enslaved several times before. Yet Eddoo and others, including Abina’s husband Yaw Awoah, claim that she was not actually a slave. In the activities in this pathway – the Slavery Pathway – we will look at the question of whether or not Abina was a slave by investigating the history of slavery in West Africa and the Atlantic world, the labor and lifestyle slaves lived, and Abina’s specific experiences. In the end, we will return to the question of whether Abina Mansah was a slave.

What is a slave? Before we can try to determine whether or not Abina was a slave, we need to have a working definition of a “slave.” You can begin to develop a useful definition by writing down your thoughts here, before even reading the rest of this text….


App Lesson Sample:

Download Episode 1 Lesson Sample


App Video Sample:



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