The Slave Dancer

by Paula Fox

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Who is Benjamin Stout in The Slave Dancer?

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Benjamin Stout is one of the sailors aboard the slave ship Moonlight. Jessie first meets him when Benjamin approaches him and introduces himself. "A tall, heavy-limbed man," Benjamin apologizes for the ship kidnapping him and explains to Jessie his situation.

On the surface, it seems like Benjamin is a nice man. Other then Purvis, he is one of the few men aboard to pay Jessie any attention, and he is always offering him advice. Sometimes he sneaks him extra rice and beef. However, for some reason he can't understand at the beginning, Jessie doesn't like or trust him.

He soon gets to understand why when Stout steals an egg from the captain's supply and blames the theft on Purvis, leading to Stout beating Purvis on the captain's behalf and hanging him from the rigging.

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