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.
Although from different eras, both Douglass and Rowlandson use similar techniques such as religion, repetition, and sentimentalism to show that being held captive and slavery is wrong. America was founded on Christian beliefs, so Douglass attacked that. He states, “If the churches and ministers of our country were not stupidly blind, or most wickedly indifferent, they, too, would so regard it” (Douglass 1037) Douglass is making a bold move that will spark controversy. He uses statements like this to keep the audience’s attention.
Slavery: Effective on Slaves and Slaveholders In Frederick Douglass’s autobiography Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, Douglass recounts his life in slavery to reveal to his readers the horrors of the American slave system. To effectively inform his readers of the corrupt system, he publicizes the slaveholders’ hypocritical practice of Christianity. Although he himself is a Christian, Douglass’s narrative is a scathing commentary on the ironic role of Christian religion in the Southern slaveholding culture. Throughout his book, the author expresses and exemplifies his perspective on religion by illustrating the falseness and hypocrisy of the Southern people. To start off, Frederick Douglass suggests that the Southern people’s religion is false and insincere.
The idiosyncratic style Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave by Frederick Douglass depicts the discriminatory actions of postcolonial slave owners in the southern United States, which reflects their greed for unpaid labor on their plantations. He employs the metaphor of the book that their masters prohibited them from owning by law throughout the memoir to demonstrate the avarice that drives white slave owners to turn a darker-skinned, intelligent being into a machine for personal benefit for centuries after the colonization of America. Also, the irony further displays the power of greed by expressing the slaveholder’s uncivilized method of forcing another human out of civilization. Furthermore, his use of a paradox of the use of pure religious beliefs to justify a slaveholder’s inhumane treatment reveals their rapacious actions that contradict the teachings of the church.
During the time when Douglass wrote this book, there were several myths which were used to justify slavery. The slaveholder during his time justified this inhuman practice using different arguments. The first argument they used was the religion. From the narrative, Douglass says that slaveholders called themselves Christians which was the dominant religion by then.
Douglass has shown how religious slaveholders are the worst especially when entertainment comes into play. The first being from one of his slaveholders Master Thomas, he whipped a young woman while reading a quote from the scripture to explain his reason for whipping her. The next example was with his other Master Mr.Covey, he would go to church and preach the word but come back beating slaves and going against the almighty God. The last example that is shown is again shown with Mr.Covey, he was guilty of compelling his woman slave to commit the sin of adultery. All of the examples illustrate that religious slaveholders are worst than non-religious slaveholders.
The legendary abolitionist and orator Frederick Douglass was one of the most important social reformers of the nineteenth century. Being born into slavery on a Maryland Eastern Shore plantation to his mother, Harriet Bailey, and a white man, most likely Douglass’s first master was the starting point of his rise against the enslavement of African-Americans. Nearly 200 years after Douglass’s birth and 122 years after his death, The social activist’s name and accomplishments continue to inspire the progression of African-American youth in modern society. Through his ability to overcome obstacles, his strive for a better life through education, and his success despite humble beginnings, Frederick Douglass’s aspirations stretched his influence through
With this, Douglass is addressing the topic of slavery and whether to abolish it or not. And goes about telling the hardships he went through.
Secondly, Douglass adds on to his speech by describing that the slaves are living a gloomy existence while the young Nation is celebrating its freedom and liberty which they don’t get to experience because they are a lock in chains. He uses ethos to appeal to the moral idealistic views of the fellow Christian man by bringing the question of God by saying “[...] and would make me reproach before God and the world (P. 5).” By expressing his views, Douglass and the audience unite under the set of clear morals that came from God who would disagree with the actions that they comminuted
Douglass tells us this by saying that he believes anyone who is a slave owner cannot be a Christian. In his view, he believes being a slave owner violates the very principles of being a Christian. Auld quote he believes that the Christianity practiced by the Slave owners and the Christianity practiced by non-slave owners are two
Douglass endured lots of whippings, along with many other slaves, during his years with Master Auld. “They have been entirely deprived of the power to read and write. You have kept them in utter ignorance” ( Frederick Douglass) Frederick Douglass believed that God created all people equal.
When slavery was abolished in 1865, it was a critical turning point in the journey towards equality for African Americans. Prior to the eradication of slavery writers like Frederick Douglass sought to free millions of slaves in America. While slavery was a well-known and growing problem in the south, it wasn’t as widely recognized in the north. In Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass: An American Slave Douglass recounts his experiences and tribulations as a slave. In the narrative Douglass effectively uses rhetorical imagery, antithesis, and irony in order to expose the harsh reality of slavery during the 19th century.
From the moment Frederick Douglass was given the tools to read “books” he was overcome with a joy and excitement for knowledge that inspired him to persevere regardless of the beliefs of others. As a slave Douglass was sent to live with his masters the Hugh family, during his time there his master’s wife began to teach him to read “books”. The lessons gave the young boy a chance to explore worlds he never imagined and was the beginning of an undeniable love for literature. Unfortunately when his master was informed of this he immediately halted all the lessons. Douglass recalls Mr. Hugh explaining to his wife that studying “books” was not suitable for slaves and