Slavery In Antebellum America

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“I will give Mr. Freeland the credit of being the best master I ever had, till I became my own master.” –Fredrick Douglass. The fight for the end of slavery was an issue that eventually tore the United States into two parts. Antebellum America was a period of conflict and unease due to the various differences in beliefs regarding slavery between the northern and southern states. However, American abolitionists provoked sympathy and outrage of southern slave ideals by using the rhetoric of natural rights and the Declaration of Independence, illustrating the contradiction of Christian values to slavery, and criticizing how domestic ideology conflicted with slavery. Abolitionist and former slave, Frederick Douglass refuted the proslavery ideology…show more content…
For example, Sarah Grimke, a middle-class white woman abolitionist, wrote, “A similar condition of moral pollution and utter disregard of a pure and virtuous reputation…That such a state of society should exist in a Christian nation…” In Grimke’s work, one can note her outrage at the clashing ideals of Christian Slave holders, and noted on the moral effects of the two conflicting beliefs. Northern abolitionists aimed to gain more sympathy by reminding their readers of Christian beliefs and how they clash with the practice of slavery. William Lloyd Garrison even made a remark in his newspaper article asking for a pardon from God for the sin and inequality happening in the country. Many Americans were of Christian faith and by aligning slavery as a sin and a dishonor to God, abolitionist were able to gain more support and outrage for the Northern Abolitionist…show more content…
Domestic ideology then was, the idea that women should be at home taking care of the children and serving as an emotional figure, while the men are out being corrupted and making the money. Many middle-class women were able to break into the public sphere and exercised this right to argue for white women’s rights, not only did they argue for white women rights, but they also argued for black slave women as well. Sarah Grimke remarks in her document, “There is another class of women in this country, to whom I cannot refer, without feelings of the deepest shame and sorrow. I allude to our female slaves.”. She not only focused her argument on women of her social class, but women of all classes and advocated for the equality for all. Women were more likely to advocate for abolition because it taught them important political skills. Women felt that slavery was an attack on domestic ideology because it was corrupting the private family sphere and did not allow for women to serve as moral and emotional outlets to their
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