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Frederick Douglass Negative Effects On Slaves

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Frederick Douglass’s narrative provides a first hand experience into the imbalance of power between a slave and a slaveholder and the negative effects it has on them both. Douglass proves that slavery destroys not only the slave, but the slaveholder as well by saying that this “poison of irresponsible power” has a dehumanizing effect on the slaveholder’s morals and beliefs (Douglass 40). This intense amount of power breaks the kindest heart and changes the slaveholder into a heartless demon (Douglass 40). Yet these are not the only ways that Douglass proves what ill effect slavery has on the slaveholder. Douglass also uses deep characterization, emotional appeal, and religion to present the negative effects of slavery. Douglass uses deep characterization to show the change in behavior of slaveholders who have uncontrolled power. A good example of this is Sophia Auld. Before slavery took effect, she was a kind and caring woman who comprehended moral righteousness. She had never owned a slave before Douglass. Owning Douglass soon changed her into an evil slave owner when she realized the power, “the white man’s power to enslave the black man” that she had (Douglass 41).…show more content…
Through deep characterization, emotional appeal, and religion, Frederick Douglass shows the readers what negative effects slavery has on the slaveholders themselves. Douglass successfully shows that slavery makes the slaveholder bitter and brings ultimate sadness into their lives. In addressing the harmful effects of slavery on the slaveholders, he makes one reconsider their moral righteousness and better comprehend the difference between humanity and atrocity. Though there are many other ways that slavery could have been harmful to the slaveholder, Frederick Douglass has shown that these ways given were true and has proven that they were indeed negative effects on the
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