Examples Of Narrative Of The Life Of Frederick Douglass

Better Essays
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, is a stunning and horrifying autobiography in which Frederick Douglass himself uses a wide array of rhetoric in his writing to portray how slavery not only destroys the human soul, but also degrades and dehumanizes both slaves and slaveholders alike. Slavery is “the keeping of slaves as a practice or institution.” To dehumanize is to “deprive of human qualities or attributes; divest of individuality.” Douglass’ argument is that both slaves and slaveholders are deprived of human qualities and attributes due to the effect that slavery has on them. Through rhetorical strategies such as appeals to ethos and pathos, parallelism, repetition, and imagery, Douglass persuasively instills his ideas in the reader in order to convey his argument. On the very first page of the text, Douglass explains why slaveholders tried to keep their slaves as unintelligent and uneducated as possible. This gives the reader an idea of how slaves were treated while setting the tone for the book before actually diving into the heart of the book and describing more about the horrific circumstances. He explains how he had “no accurate knowledge of my age, never having seen any authentic record containing it… It is the wish of most masters…show more content…
Covey was like to the reader, he uses parallelism to show equality in importance of certain adjectives. Parallelism is the similarity of structure in a pair or series of related words, phrases, or clauses. One example of this is when he states: “Such was his disposition, and success at deceiving, I do verily believe that he deceived himself into the solemn belief, that he was a most sincere worshipper of the most high God…” (Douglass 48). Through this use of rhetoric, Douglass effectively conveys how his disposition was equally important as his ability to succeed in deceiving not only the people around him, but himself as
Get Access