The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass is an enticing tale of Douglas as he changes from slave to man. Near the beginning of the book, his first witness of a whipping reveals the entrance to the horrors that would come throughout his experience with enslavement. “No words, no tears, no prayers, from his gory victim…” (4) it displays the physical, emotional, and spiritual breaking of an individual; powerful words to create an understanding of the terror of slavery. Beating into absolute submission strikes a sense of sadness, pity, justice in the reader that encourages them to see slavery in a different light. Throughout his narrative he continues to attack these points to encourage similar feelings of pity and acknowledgement “to enlighten white readers about both the realities of slavery as an institution and the humanity of black people as individuals deserving of full human rights.”.
Douglass puts to use personification and metaphors to show the path needed to end slavery. When speaking on the state of slavery in current times Douglass mentions, “Great streams are not easily turned from channels, worn deep in the course of ages”. This language refers to the institution of slavery and the large changes needed to change it. The metaphor hopes to portray the task of ending slavery to the audience. In addition, Douglass states, “above your national, tumultuous joy, I hear the mournful wail of millions!”.
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.
This chapter addresses the central argument that African history and the lives of Africans are often dismissed. For example, the author underlines that approximately 50,000 African captives were taken to the Dutch Caribbean while 1,600,000 were sent to the French Caribbean. In addition, Painter provides excerpts from the memoirs of ex-slaves, Equiano and Ayuba in which they recount their personal experience as slaves. This is important because the author carefully presents the topic of slaves as not just numbers, but as individual people. In contrast, in my high school’s world history class, I can profoundly recall reading an excerpt from a European man in the early colonialism period which described his experience when he first encountered the African people.
The publication of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass was monumental, a rhetorical strategy in itself. Frederick Douglass establishes his credibility by being one of the first African slaves to write of the brutal nature of slavery. He also writes on a personal level, connecting to those who had the same experiences and appealing to those yearning to learn of the situation. Douglass’ personal affiliation with slavery can be seen at times when he shares that “slavery would not always be able to hold [him] within its foul embrace.” (Douglass
However, Douglass, who knows the true culprit, refutes this idea saying instead that slaves would join together in song to tell of their hatred and sorrow. Another way that Douglass rebukes this friendly image is with the gory horrific reality. For instance, when a savage overseer kills a slave named Demby, Douglass recalls “his mangled body sank out of sight, and blood and brains marked the water where he had stood”(22). Douglass isn’t painting this life in a positive way because he wants others to grasp the alarming reality that was life as a slave. Although those involved in the enslavement of African Americans might’ve liked to believe it, there was nothing reasonable or justifiable about
His poems are a rather impactful pieces, which do leave the reader with some cognisance of a marginally dystopian regime, one that is a dehumanising, yet scarcely inevitably ineluctable. Dehumanising as the regime may seem, Dawe makes us cognisant on the painful realities that circumvent the history and society itself. Homecoming fixated on the dehumanising treatment the war heroes received, On the Death of Ronald Ryan highlighted the corrupt regime at the time, accentuated the erroneous contentment of an
Within all major societies of the world exists a power struggle between the majority and the minority, the disenfranchised and the coddled. But no power struggle has achieved the same notoriety as the black slave’s plight in the Western world. From England to the West Indies and the Americas, black slaves suffered insurmountable trauma and subjugation. One of these slaves, Olaudah Equiano, recounts his experiences, both triumphant and pitiful, within the Americas and England to affect change in his audience and in the world. In his The Life of Olaudah Equiano, he utilizes specific rhetorical strategies to affect this change and to accomplish his goal.
This poem teaches readers that all humans have strength within them that can help to overcome any obstacles. “Out of the huts of history 's shame…/ I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide…/ Into a daybreak that 's wondrously clear…/I rise…” (29-43) generate a glorious ending and reflection of being the hope and the dream of slaves as reflected in the freedom and opportunity of the present day. The message drives a point that no matter what, the protagonist will be triumphant.
The poet slave describes the life of a boy as a slave. She puts the book into many little poems describing how he was kept like a pet and shows how people were treated back then. “Now my owner is ghostly inside her skeleton of powder but I, being only a poodle, can watch I am allowed to know these truths about shadow and light”(The Poet Slave of Cuba).This quote shows how broken he was at the time. It also shows how many were treated at this time to make the reader realize just how hard times were.this book impacted the history part of Cuban past times.
Michelle Cliff’s short story Down the Shore conspicuously deals with a particularly personal and specific, deeply psychological experience, in order to ultimately sub-textually create a metaphor regarding a wider issue of highly social nature. More specifically, the development of the inter-dependent themes of trauma, exploitation, as well as female vulnerability, which all in the case in question pertain to one single character, also latently extend over to the wider social issue of colonialism and its entailing negative repercussions, in this case as it applies to the Caribbean and the British Empire. The story’s explicit personal factor is developed through the literary techniques of repetition, symbolism, metaphor, as well as slightly warped albeit telling references to a distinct emotional state, while its implicit social factor is suggested via the techniques of allusion, so as to ultimately create a generally greater, undergirding metaphor.
The Narrative of the life of Frederick Douglass and The School Days of an Indian Girl by Zitkala-sa and Frederick Douglass himself, explores the ways in which colonialism brought about their distress. To which in turn set out a passion in them to succeed – and so they did. Both narrative essay explores death through American culture with the theme of education being their escape. Though one would think it would be the demise to their identity, upon their realization, succeeded to defeat the common notion that, un-American ethnic groups (minorities) were below the “white pale faces.” Language and education seemed to disconnect both cultures.
Ohiyesa’s The Soul of the Indian gives a nostalgic critique on the encroachment of white civilization on the Native American culture, citing the parallelisms the two societies share and explaining the reasoning behind Native American rituals. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass by Frederick Douglass gives a glimpse into the life of a slave, comparing the life of the free and the enslaved, and giving reason to the actions of the slave and slave master. Throughout each book, it becomes apparent that each has a common trait: the white population’s use of religion as a means for their cruelty. To clarify, religion is used as a justification for their respective instances of oppression, both the purge of Native Americans and Native American culture for Ohiyesa, and slavery for Douglass. Although they experience different systems of oppression, Douglass and Ohiyesa see how the corruption of religion can be used by the white majority to assert themselves as masters to their respective peoples.
The gender of the speaker cannot be defined since there are no indications to suggest the speaker’s gender. The main idea of the poem is the integral part of music in African American culture as a “hypodermic needle / to [the] soul” soothing the weariness and pain from the “smoldering memor[ies]” of “slave ships” (6). In stanza 1, the larger theme of social inequality is addressed through the allusion of the slave trade by trumpet player’s memory “of slave ships / Blazed to the crack of whips,” (6-7).