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
Douglass is a African American that was a slave and did a Narrative about his time being a slave and in his Narrative he “threw light” at the American slave system. African American slave Frederick Douglass lived through a time of racism and how slavery was a natural thing to do but was a very awful thing. And slavery is when families who had colored skin were separated and sold of to a person that can do anything to them, the slave is pretty much like the slaveholder’s property. And in this essay I will talk about how Douglass’s position differs from those who supported slavery and also I will be talking about How Douglass used his Narrative to share his position. How Douglass “throws light” on the American Slave system is by showing
The Narrative of Frederick Douglass is a very great perspective for people of today to understand what it was like to be a slave in the 1800’s. It tells the story of the slave Frederick Douglass and how he began as an uneducated slave and was moved around from many different types of owners, cruel or nice, and how his and other slaves presences changed the owners, and also how he educated himself and realized that he shouldn’t be treated so poorly It was at the point later in the book that I realized how some slaves might have felt during slavery in the 1800’s. When Douglass is sent away to Mr.Covey he is treated pretty badly but eventually he stands up to Mr.Covey and demands that he stopped being treated like an animal.
In “The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass”, Douglass narrates in detail the oppressions he went through as a slave before winning his freedom. In the narrative, Douglass gives a picture about the humiliation, brutality, and pain that slaves go through. We can evidently see that Douglass does not want to describe only his life, but he uses his personal experiences and life story as a tool to rise against slavery. He uses his personal life story to argue against common myths that were used to justify the act of slavery. Douglass invalidated common justification for slavery like religion, economic argument and color with his life story through his experiences torture, separation, and illiteracy, and he urged for the end of slavery.
The Narrative of the life of Frederick Douglass shows the imbalance of power between slaves and their masters. In his book, Douglass proves that slavery is a destructive force not only to the slaves, but also for the slaveholders. “Poison of the irresponsible power” that masters have upon their slaves that are dehumanizing and shameless, have changed the masters themselves and their morality(Douglass 39). This amount of power and control in contact with one man breaks the kindest heart and the purest thoughts turning the person evil and corrupt. Douglass uses flashbacks that illustrate the emotions that declare the negative effects of slavery.
Frederick Douglass believes America has been altered by a mass hysteria, slavery, thus affecting its ideals, values, culture, practices, or myths. At the time, no one knew better when it came to slavery. In the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, Douglass depicts certain instances where he exploits the American perspective of slavery rather than challenging it. To begin with, Frederick Douglass intertwines witnessing graphic events with his personal experiences to represent how slave owners exploited African American female slaves.
Because of the statuses of each person who attends Douglass’ school, they have a common ground to discuss with each other. Although Douglass is not technically a slave like most of the others learning from him, he still is in the lowest social tier and African American. Because of their corresponding similarities, the slaves and Douglass bond over their hardships while understanding what the others are going through. It is easy to sympathize with each other because they are in the same situation. During the time period this was written, society purposely made African American slaves feel like they didn’t belong and like they were outcasts.
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.
Frederick Douglass’s Hope for Freedom 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, indirect tone shifts, and various other rhetorical techniques, we can see Douglass relaying to his audience the hardships of slavery through ethos, the disheartening times that slavery brings, and his breakthrough of determination to obtain freedom.
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
In his narrative, Frederick Douglass explained the concept of manhood by emphasizing on how one should be acknowledge with their own identities and have their own possession of clothes, shelter, and foods as well as privileges that God has given them. Manhood is an important measurement for Douglass because every man discovers, have desires, and develop passions whenever a man looks into himself or by a mirror of reflection. Throughout his journey as a slave, Douglass observed and experiment the cruciality of mankind when one has the power to take control of their subjects. From Mrs. Auld’s amazing lessons, education has helped him not only able to read and write but also understand the reasons behind slavery existence (Douglass, pg 22-23).
Fredrick Douglass is very well known for describing unique views on human nature. Human nature is described as a psychological feeling, characteristic and behavioral traits that is shared by all humans and mankind. Douglass explains that nature is not the blame, but an innocent view. Fredrick Douglass quotes, “Nature has done almost nothing to prepare men and women to be either slaves or slaveholders” (Douglass 498). This quote explains his point of view on nature. But, Mr. Douglass described human nature to be a constituted state and that is cannot honor a helpless man, although it can pity him. Throughout his life, Douglass examined human nature through the experience of individuals, who have lived with human interactions.
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
The Detriments of Slavery In Narrative, Frederick Douglass describes his personal experience as a slave and how slavery is dehumanizing. As Douglass strives for freedom from slavery, both mentally and physically, he explains each of his masters and how they change throughout their lives of being slave holders. Douglas argues that slavery is not only physically and mentally detrimental to the slave but additionally, the slave owner. Both slave and slave holders suffer physically from slavery. For a slave, physical suffering is due to lack of necessities or being treated harshly.
The power of education is a main theme within A Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass. Douglass 's experiences lead him to recognize its great power and to believe that education is a key in our life. It has the power to open all doors while providing us with several opportunities. Education makes the difference; it expands the human mind since the more we know the more enlightened we are. It makes us free and it avoid us to be enslaved, too. However, literacy turns out to be not only bliss, but also painful. Indeed, while learning to read Frederick becomes more and more aware of the injustices of slavery, and this leads him to regret this knowledge “Learning how to read had become a curse rather than a blessing” ( Douglass ) .