First, during the years 1936-1938, 2,300 people, who were former slaves in the United States, had been interviewed about their own experience of slavery by the Federal Writer’s Project of the Works Progress Administration (WPA). The WPA was able to interview people in over seventeen states to preserve the ex-slaves life for people who did not live in those times of slavery. These sources are responses of the ex-slaves feelings about this “peculiar institution”. These interviews were documented to ensure an accurate history of the ex-slaves experiences before they died of old age or disease.
Semester II Anchor – Historical Narrative Back in 1936, I was unsuccessful in my attempts to find a suitable job in journalism, even though I graduated from Harvard University with a major in English. Coincidentally, I was contacted by Jacob Baker, representing the Federal Writers Project, with the offer to interview former slaves in order to give insight to future generations about the system of slavery from those who actually experienced its cruelty. Of course, I accepted immediately and began conversing with several slaves within the month. The Federal Writers Project has definitely been the most eye-opening experience of my entire life, and it has already been fifteen years since I first interviewed these fascinating people.
The truth—the unpleasant, horrible truth—must be known because it is so significant. This has been one of the most impactful readings in school because it doesn't hold back. Although learning about slavery is neither joyful or simple, it reveals the truth that slavery still has a bearing on Black Americans' lives and experiences. Despite the need of educating about slavery, it appears that classroom discussions regarding the subject are doomed to failure in some classrooms. There are petitions to remove slavery from textbooks all around America.
Slavery possesses a cruelty where very few of the victims attain liberation, with a smaller number able to recollect on their experiences. Nearly 172 years passed since Douglass published his journey from utter blindness to become “his own master”, and the message relayed still resonates in the present. Douglass vividly describes hardships that slaves and free African-Americans must deal with. As I pondered on the imagery presented by the wonderfully scripted narrative, I immediately saw, on a drastically smaller scale, the issues Douglass presents to the reader, in modern day 2017. It appears that, as racial divides flare, the black man is subjected to punishment rather than the white.
To slave a person is the most inhumane act one can commit, and unfortunately was very popular during the 18th century. However, have you ever wondered the different impacts slavery caused between men and women? Both Frederick Douglass and Harriet Jacobs showcase, through their writings, the horrors of slavery, and contrast the many similarities and import differences between the experience of slavery between genders. One of the similarities of slavery for both genders was their allowances. Both men and women were only allowed a certain amount of food and clothing to survive throughout a year.
Injustice is a prevailing theme in Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl by Harriet Tubman, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass by Frederick Douglass, Spider Woman’s Web by Susan Hazen-Hammond and Great Speeches by Native Americans by Bob Blaisdell; the diligence of several characters in these stories and narratives has made it possible for them to preserve and overcome injustices. The United States has not always been a land of the free; white settlers destroyed the meaning of freedom when they stole lands from the indigenous people. Freedom was also destroyed when black people in America were not treated as full human beings. Despite of the many obstacles the oppressed faced, their thirst for freedom and determination led them to
Abina and the Important Men uncovers the story of a young girl’s journey through years of enslavement at the hands of various men and her plea for justice. West African women in the nineteenth century faced a multitude of challenges including slavery, forced marriage, assault, and silencing. Unfortunately, their stories were rarely recorded, and if they were, they were seldom shared or believed. Patriarchal societies, such as the one Abina encountered, perpetuate the systemic oppression of women not only by white men, but by men of color and women themselves. Captured and sold into slavery as a young girl, Abina was forced to perform domestic labor and her masters often beat her.
The course of Native African’s history has been marked by deadly wars, spreads of mortal diseases, massive droughts, food and water scarcities, but there is one tragedy that rises above all of them: slavery (involuntary human servitude). During the 15th to the 19th century massive slave trades took place across the Atlantic Ocean, from Africa to the Caribbean, North and South America. This has been the most concerning fatality that has ever occurred to Native Africans. Not only was their culture taken away, but their lives as well. The trades had no limits, slaves were from small boys and girls to elder men and women.
In the 1700-1800’s, the use of African American slaves for backbreaking, unpaid work was at its prime. Despite the terrible conditions that slaves were forced to deal with, slave owners managed to convince themselves and others that it was not the abhorrent work it was thought to be. However, in the mid-1800’s, Northern and southern Americans were becoming more aware of the trauma that slaves were facing in the South. Soon, an abolitionist group began in protest, but still people doubted and questioned it.
Cynthia Keo 12/22/2022 Room 303 Slavery; Is it flawed? ELA “You may choose to look the other way but you can never say again that you did not know.” ―
Introduction In Ronald Takaki’s book, A Different Mirror: A History of Multicultural America, Takaki argues that despite the first slave codes emerged in the 1660’s, de facto slavery had already existed and provides evidence to support this claim. While he provides a range of data, these facts can be categorized in three groups: racial, economic, and historical. These groups served as precursors to what eventually led to slavery codes to be enacted and the beginning of one of the darkest chapters in American History. Racial
From this, derives a bond with the reader that pushes their understanding of the evil nature of slavery that society deemed appropriate therefore enhancing their understanding of history. While only glossed over in most classroom settings of the twenty-first century, students often neglect the sad but true reality that the backbone of slavery, was the dehumanization of an entire race of people. To create a group of individuals known for their extreme oppression derived from slavery, required plantation owner’s of the South to constantly embedded certain values into the lives of their slaves. To talk back means to be whipped.
The detailed descriptions included in primary sources, along with the descriptive and emotional illustrations included in graphic history are crucial elements in studying and understanding the process and history of the transatlantic slave trade. Rafe Blaufarb and Liz Clarke tie both of these together to help readers truly understand this historic tragedy in the book, Inhuman Traffick: The International Struggle Against the Transatlantic Slave Trade. Although different than the standard book that may be used, that simply spews information out in an uncreative and somewhat boring way, this book is a tool that can be chosen in classrooms to teach different aspects of the slave trade. Working together, the primary sources and graphic history
Jacobs decided to write her autobiography “Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl” in order to share the true life of enslaved women, since men wrote most autobiographies. She wanted a woman’s perspective and she thought she was obliged to write it because she was well educated for a black woman during the times of slavery. Her life and other people alike her had their lives greatly affected by Andrew Jackson and his political roles during the late 1920’s to early 1950’s. Jackson’s policies, politics, and societal roles during and after his presidency affected the lives of enslaved women in the United States between 1828 and 1850.
“Slavery proved as injurious to her as it did to me. When I went there, she was pious, warm, and tender-hearted woman. There was no sorrow or suffering for which she had not a tear. She had bread for the hungry, clothes for the naked, and comfort for every mourner that came within reach. Slavery soon proved its ability to divest her of these heavenly qualities” (Douglass, 252).