Essay on Frederick Douglass: Social Reformer

540 Words 3 Pages
Fredrick Douglass began life in a difficult position. Born into slavery, he did not have the good fortune of having a parent to attend to him. He witnessed unspeakable cruelty daily, which undoubtedly caused him a great deal of emotional distress. Yet, he never gave up on himself. Throughout his life, he continually sought to better himself through any means available to him. Against all odds, Douglass made tremendous strides in his efforts to better himself, and he eventually succeeded in achieving his ultimate goal of escaping from the horrors of slavery. One of Douglass’ first endeavors on his journey of self improvement was to become literate. Upon coming to live with Mr. and Mrs. Auld, he says that he found his new mistress to …show more content…
Fredrick Douglass began life in a difficult position. Born into slavery, he did not have the good fortune of having a parent to attend to him. He witnessed unspeakable cruelty daily, which undoubtedly caused him a great deal of emotional distress. Yet, he never gave up on himself. Throughout his life, he continually sought to better himself through any means available to him. Against all odds, Douglass made tremendous strides in his efforts to better himself, and he eventually succeeded in achieving his ultimate goal of escaping from the horrors of slavery. One of Douglass’ first endeavors on his journey of self improvement was to become literate. Upon coming to live with Mr. and Mrs. Auld, he says that he found his new mistress to be “a woman of the kindest heart and finest feelings.” Douglass tells us that “she very kindly commenced to teach me the A, B, C... [and] assisted me in learning to spell words.” However, when Mr. Auld found out about his wife’s lessons, he forbade her to continue them. Mr. Auld angrily pronounced that “It would forever unfit him to be a slave.” Although Douglass’ formal lessons were thereafter terminated, he had learned the importance of becoming literate. He decided that learning to read would be his ticket to freedom and determinedly accepted lessons from anyone who would give them to him. Douglass’ achieving literacy was his first step towards achieving his freedom. Douglass also demonstrated great courage during his tenure as a