African and African American according to Achebe and Douglass

1019 Words5 Pages
African and African American according to Achebe and Douglass

Throughout the years, the image of the African American culture has been portrayed in in a negative light. Many people look to African, and African American literature to gain knowledge about the African American culture. The true culture and image often goes unseen, or is tarnished because writers who have no true insight or experience, have proceeded to write about things in which they are uneducated.. For years the world has seen writers attempt to taint and damage the image of the African American. Through strength and determination, several African American writers have been able to portray the true image and struggle of the Negro through various writings
…show more content…
He beat her again when she referred to him as one of those "guns that never shot."(Achebe 89).

On the other hand, The Narrative of Fredrick Douglass shows the different attributes of slavery and the effects they have on Africans and African Americans. The narrative shows how ignorance is used as a tool of slavery. Douglas’s Narrative shows how white slaveholders enable slavery by keeping their slaves ignorant. At the time Douglass was writing, many people believed that slavery was a natural state of being. They believed that blacks were inherently unable of participating in civil society and thus should be kept as workers for whites.

Moreover,. The Narrative displays the use of knowledge as a tool for freedom. Just as slave owners keep men and women as slaves by depriving them of knowledge and education, slaves must seek knowledge and education in order to pursue freedom. It is from Hugh Auld that Douglass learns this notion that knowledge must be the way to freedom, as Auld forbids his wife to teach Douglass how to read and write because education ruins slaves (Davis 65). Douglass sees that Auld has unwittingly revealed the strategy by which whites manage to keep blacks as slaves and by which blacks might free themselves. Douglass presents his own self-education as the primary means by which he is able to free himself, and as his greatest tool to work for the freedom of all slaves.
Get Access