Examples Of Courage In Frederick Douglass

728 Words3 Pages

Fredrick Douglass’ primary intent for writing this autobiography is to expose the horrific realities of slavery to white readers and convince them that he has humanity. In order to do so he shares events in his life that required a great amount of courage. These anecdotes of courage appeal to readers’ ethos and pathos, causing them to sympathize with Douglass and admire his unwavering courage. Therefore, in admiring his courage, white readers are able to recognize Douglass’ humanity because he refuses to become dehumanized by slavery and become his own man. One of Douglass’ most admirable form of courage is his emotional strength. From a young age, Douglass and other slaves have been purposefully discouraged from forming close bonds with …show more content…

For instance, once Douglass learns that becoming educated will enhance his chances at becoming a freeman, he is determined to learn how to read and write. However, slave owners took precautions to prevent their slaves from being educated because, “if you teach that nigger how to read, there will be no keeping him...he would at once become unmanageable, and of no value to his master” (Douglass 47). Therefore, Douglass has put himself in a dangerous spot, for if his intellectual pursuits are discovered, he could be killed. In addition, Douglass goes so far as educating other slaves in running his Sabbath school. He states, “Every moment they spent in that school, they were liable to be taken up, and given thirty-nine lashes. They came because they wished to learn…I taught them, because it was the delight of my soul to be doing something that looked like the bettering the condition of my race” (Douglass 88). Therefore, while white readers may not agree with slaves being educated, through his courage to risk himself by teaching not only himself but others how to read and write, readers can depict his humanity in his selflessness and thirst for knowledge, which is a common desire amongst

Open Document