How Does Frederick Douglass Encourage The Power Of Education

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Education is a key. Not many can find it, but those who do can unlock the door to endless knowledge. Abolitionist leader and American slave, Frederick Douglass, in his autobiography A Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, contemplates the enslavement he endured while emphasizing the importance of education as a key to freedom. Throughout Douglass’ educational awakening and his realization of its overall power, he comes to understand the slaveholder’s evil doings in keeping all slaves trapped in ignorance. The inception of Douglass’ path to learning was through an unlikely source, being his master’s wife. It was her invaluable kindness that provided Douglass with the foundation of an education and her change of heart towards him that …show more content…

While Mr. Auld criticizes his wife for her wrongdoings, Douglass discovers that “power over a white man would be through education” (32). Using specific diction of the word power, he enables the strength of intelligence and its valued quality. Witnessing Mr. Auld’s upsetting manner fabricates Douglass’s consciousness of education’s essential benefit to the captive world he is confined in. He discerns how much intelligence is admired by a white man, consequently their purpose for keeping their workers unintelligent. Slaveholders’ representation of an intelligent slave would only result in him being “unmanageable” (32) in their guidance and possibly put them in the same hierarchy as them, something they feared. Education opens a gateway to Douglass and enlightens him of what is beyond the walls of enslavement urging him towards independence. Slaves being intellectually informed of their surrounds terrified slaveholders due to them being aware of their loss of control over slaves because they are no longer ignorant. Although Douglass was appreciative that some slaves were able to escape through the famous Underground Railroad, he was critically unsure about sending the uneducated slaves off to a place unknown to them as they “do nothing towards enlightening the slave” (71). He views it as doing much “towards enlightening the master” (71). The Underground Railroad created the slaveholder’s fear of their slaves escaping since they were aware of their actions. Sending the slaves with not even an ounce of intelligence alarms Douglass for they have no awareness of the world before them. And without this guidance and awareness, they will infinitely be imprisoned in their slave mindset, for they are still no better than what they were

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