Frederick Douglass Rhetorical Analysis Essay

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Hope and fear, two contradictory emotions that influence us all, convicted Frederick Douglass to choose life over death, light over darkness, and freedom over sin. Douglass, in Chapter ten, pages thirty-seven through thirty-nine, of the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, utilizes various rhetorical techniques and tone shifts to convey his desperation to find hope in this time of misery and suffering. Mr. Covey, who Douglass has been sent to by his master to be broken, has succeeded in nearly tearing all of Douglass’s dreams of freedom away from him. To expound on his desires to escape, Douglass presents boats as something that induces joy to most but compels slaves to feel terror. Given the multiple uses of repetition, antithesis, …show more content…

In the opening sentence, “I was made to drink the bitterest dregs of slavery,” we see a metaphor being implemented to indicate how Douglass was having the most mental despair that he has had in his life (37). He was having to withstand the most complex experiences a slave could possibly endure. Douglass then goes on expounding on his hardships faced with this crude man, Mr. Covey. Two examples of repetition is then used when Douglass depicts his work as “never too hot or too cold; it could never rain, blow, hail, or snow too hard for us to work in the field. Work, work, work, was scarcely more the order of the day than of the night” (37). Natural elements would not prevent the slaves from working, even during harsh winters. We grasp a connection between the harsh conditions and horrid treatment the slaves endured. The cycle of a slaves life is exemplified in this example in how their lives solely revolved around working all the time. Douglass shows an antithesis in how to Mr. Covey, “The longest days were to short for him, and the shortest nights too long for him” (38). This is used to convey how the quantity of work Mr. Covey wanted to be accomplished was never done in that day. Douglass’s mental strength was rapidly

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