Francis Bok, an abolitionist who spent his adolescence enslaved in Sudan, will speak at the University of Central Florida about how he escaped from slavery and started a new life in America.
Bok’s presentation, “Escape from Slavery,” will begin at 3 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 1, in the Pegasus Ballroom of the Student Union. The event, which has been organized by the UCF Global Perspectives Office, is free and open to the public.
Bok, a native of Southern Sudan, was captured and enslaved at age seven during a raid on the village of Nymlal. He saw adults and children brutalized and killed all around him, and for 10 years he lived as slave for a local family that forced him to sleep with cattle and endure daily beatings.
In December 1996, Bok escaped and fled to the town of Matari, where he was enslaved by local policemen for two months. A truck driver helped him escape, and Bok eventually reached Khartoum, Sudan’s capital. There, Bok was arrested by security forces and jailed for seven months. After his release, he fled to Cairo.
In 1999, the United Nations resettled Bok in North Dakota. He is now an associate at Boston’s American Anti-Slavery Group. In 2001, Bok launched the website http://iAbolish.org with the organization. He also is the author of “Escape from Slavery: The True Story of My Ten Years in Captivity– and My Journey to Freedom in America.”
In addition to the Global Perspectives Office, sponsors of Bok’s presentation include The Sibille H. Pritchard Global Peace Fellowship program, Lawrence J. Chastang and the Chastang Foundation, LarsonAllen LLP, the UCF Political Science Department, the UCF Global Peace and Security Studies Program, the UCF Office of Diversity Initiatives, the UCF International Services Center, UCF LIFE and the Global Connections Foundation.