Compare And Contrast American Abolitionism And The Civil War

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Abolitionism and the Civil War Abolitionists, both black and white, had different philosophies and tactics in trying to end slavery. Frederick Douglass was one that believed in sparking revolution through the media and political platforms. Through these platforms, he spread messages of awareness and rebellion, believing that the end of slavery had to be done by force (Zinn 167). In 1857, Douglass spoke to the masses stating that “if there is no struggle, there is no progress…Power concedes nothing without demand” (Zinn 167). Although Douglass used print media and public speeches as his main methods, he also supported acts of rebellion, even when violence was involved. His refusal to join Brown may indicate to some that he was not for violent revolts, but the true intention…show more content…
Through this belief, he led an attack in Harpers Ferry, Virginia in the hopes of sieging the federal arsenal and sparking a revolt amongst the southern slaves (Zinn 168). Even though his attempts were futile, mainly due to small numbers and improper execution, Brown remained noble to his beliefs. This was proven in his refusal to surrender when his team was defeated (Zinn 168) and again right before his execution. Before Brown’s hanging, he reiterated his belief in the pursuit of blood shed to end slavery by writing “the crimes of this guilty land will never be purged away but with blood” (Zinn 169). Abraham Lincoln’s approach to ending slavery involved the use of coercion and his political platform. Lincoln’s issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation was a mere political tactic to preserve the Union by coercing the cooperation of confederate states. To end slavery, Lincoln believed that there must be an intersection in meeting the needs of the rich and black slaves (Zinn 170). Ultimately, his intentions were to use ending slavery as a chess pawn in the hopes of seeking compliance from the southern
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