The Passing Of Grandison By Charles W. Chesnutt

661 Words3 Pages

Phaedrus once said, “Things aren’t always as they seem, first appearance deceives many.” The short story The Passing of Grandison was written by author Charles W. Chesnutt. The story takes place in Ohio in the 1850s during abolitionist and anti-slavery laws. It focuses on slavery and how the slaves are owned by a man named Colonel Owen. His son Dick Owen tries to help a slave escape to be with his true love named Charity Lomax. The main characters are Grandison, and Dick Owens. Grandison was portrayed as a loyal slave but then betrays Colonel Owens by escaping with his family. In the Passing of Grandison, Grandison used loyalty, honor, and respect to gain his masters trust and fooled the masters son, Dick Owens into thinking he didn’t want …show more content…

Dick stated, “I’m going away for day or two, but I shall leave you here. I shall lock up a hundred dollars in this drawer and give you the key… spend it all if you like… this is probably the last chance to enjoy a free state” (Chesnutt). Grandison refused every possible escape opportunity Dick Owens gave him. Once Dick realized he wasn’t going to be able to get rid of Grandison he said that Grandison,"... sensibly recognized his true place in the economy of civilization and kept it with such touching fidelity” (Chesnutt). Grandison played out his part of being the dependable slave and seemed to have disguised his status as a slave. Once to write his father about how good of a slave Grandison was to …show more content…

Dick has Grandison kidnapped to influence it to appear as though he helped him achieve freedom and returns alone to his ranch in Kentucky. Grandison again shows his unwaveringness and respect by discovering his way back to his master's farm. Still using the power of deception Grandison returns to the plantation, all “ragged and travel-stained, bowed with weariness, and upon his face a haggard look that told of hardship and privation” (Chesnutt), was not because he truly loved the colonel but because he came back to the family he loved to free them. This is where deception really comes to play even more. Because Grandison used loyalty, honor, and respect to gain his masters trust and fooled the master's son, Dick Owens into thinking he didn’t want to disobey his master by fleeing this proves that the first appearance deceives many. The unexpected ending suddenly negates every one of the characterizations which persuade; Grandison turns out to be dedicated not to his master but rather to himself and his family's opportunity. Grandison carefully waits for his opportunity until the point when it is shrewd to act, and he acts just when he can free his whole family, not simply himself. Grandison manipulation works out obviously when he and his eight nearest

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