Harriet Ann Jacobs's Incidents In The Life Of A Slave Girl

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Throughout American history, women have been treated as if they were of a lesser importance, this being ultimately true when speaking of slave women. With the feelings and beliefs of women being tossed to the side, it is easy to see how women enslaved could easily lose their dignity during slavery. This fight for sanity is prevalent in Harriet Ann Jacobs’s Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl as well as Mark Twain’s “A True Story.” Through the never ending hope, the importance of family, and the inner fight slave women had, the women in these particular works were able to maintain a spark of faith to get them through each day. In Twain’s “A True Story”, Aunt Rachel’s hope is entrusted in the Union army. She believes her own son has escaped slavery and has landed in the north. “What I come for is beca’se if he got away and got up Norf whar you gemmen comes from, you might ‘a’ seen him, maybe, an’ could tell me so as I could fine him ag’in” (258-259). Although the soldiers did not recognize the man Rachel was speaking of, Rachel still had hope that her son was looking for her just as she was for him. Brent’s grandmother is also very hopeful in Jacobs’s Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl after the sale of her son. “His sale was a terrible blow to my grandmother; but she was naturally hopeful, and she went to work with renewed energy, trusting in time to be able to purchase some of her children” (128). Hope of a future freedom with loving family members are what got these women through each day, even though they knew the odds were not in their favor. Family was also a major factor in maintaining ones dignity. The saying of “If you can’t do it for…show more content…
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. The Literature of the American South. Ed. William L. Andrews. New York: Norton, 1998. 127-153. Print.
Twain, Mark. “A True Story”. The Literature of the American South. Ed. William L. Andrews. New York: Norton, 1998. 257-260.
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