Summary Of Ira Berlin's Remembering Slavery

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Slavery as Memory and History is the first chapter of an interesting investigation made by Ira Berlin in his book called Remembering Slavery. In this chapter, Ira establishes the path that his book will follow, so he gives a small critique to the data collected on the topic, which his book will touch. What he has been able to do, is to create a real and critical organization of the process made in order to collect information and records after the abolition of slavery. Since most of the people that have been living under slavery were dying. What he suggests is that a big part of the story has been shaped by the political and philosophical ideas of the collectors. Moreover, Slavery Without Submission Emancipation Without Freedom is the title…show more content…
On that day, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which outlined the fundamental rights of the humans to be universally protected. Before that day, a Man was an entity with little importance. Life itself was of little importance. In fact, both life and humanity as we know today were just volatile entities in a world pained by tyranny, violence, poverty, and insanity. Therefore, assuming that slaves had hope would probably completely misread the common human condition and culture of that time. Especially, in America a land that had to be conquered and built from scratch, life was even more miserable. Although people today see the stars and stripes on the American flag as the synonymous of wealth and progress, long time ago America was a land of ruthless bandits, slaves, and malaria – especially in the south malaria was a common cause of death due to the swampy territories, this is why Americans imported immigrants from Africa where malaria is common and did not enslaved the Native American populations, which was physically incompatible with that kind of terrain. Hence, by making a short analysis of the era in which slavery was institutionalized, a strong critical review must be made on the real meaning of the words written by the slaves in their letters or sung in their…show more content…
The culture and practices of their time avoided them any critical analysis of their status in the society. In fact, even when slaves started revolts and violent riots, there actions where only confined to that single occasion. Overall, there was no bigger picture in their eyes on the brutality of slavery. The conditions and the cultural understanding of that time were so clear-cut and strong on the idea of blackness and slavery, that most slaves probably even believed that they were racially inferior to the white master and that their role in the society was to serve. Mostly because the wonderful ideas of civil disobedience brought by Rosa Parks in 1955 where far from the slaves in the plantations, who lived centuries before the declaration of human rights and the abolition of slavery. Times were not mature enough, and the African American was too ignorant to even believe that there could be an end to slavery. Therefore, when slaves adopted a policy to work as less as they can in order to avoid whipping, it was not an act of active resistance but only a way to minimize the pain and survive in the exhausting life of the plantation. Equally, in the letter written by the slave to her son, when she prays to see him again it was not an act of hope to the future, but merely a moment of relief in a life of

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