For hundreds of years, slaves in America were separated from their families to be sold off like livestock to their slave owners, then forced to work and live in unimaginable conditions, and viciously beaten for something as little as a task not fully being met. In the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, written by the self-taught, abolitionist himself, Douglass shares some light on the inhumane treatment and hardships slaves were forced to overcome in his journey to free himself both mentally and physically from slavery. Douglass appeals to ethos, pathos, and logos in order to truly open his reader's eyes to the horrors of slavery, conveying his message that slavery must be abolished.
Slavery has long inspired controversy among historians. Many have different views on slavery whether it was slaves lived under kind masters, or slavery was a brutal system that drove slaves into constant rebellion, but neither viewpoint is accurate although both contain some truth in it. Many masters wanted to earn profit off of slaves no matter what because some masters were kind causing the slaves to develop genuine affection for their owners. Although slaves had affection for owners they did not even question themselves when deciding to desert to Union lines when northern troops descended on the plantations during the Civil War. The experience of slaves working on cotton plantations in the 1830s and 1700s differed because of reasons unrelated to the kindness or brutality of masters. More of reasons like the plantation system, the work and discipline, the slave family, and the longevity, health, and diet of slaves.
Slavery caused a great impact in the evolution of history. Slavery was the cause of many wars and disruptions along the time line that dates to the present twenty--first century. People of color were deprived of having a life of their own and going about normal ways because of the greed that consumed society. The role of slavery in society attributed to the desperation and anger the slaves felt and lead them to strike against their owners in many occasions. Despite the threats and the unfair treatment, many people of color retaliated and firmly stood up for their rights as equal human beings. It was absurd how society based their government on religion at one point and still managed to dispossess people of
“I was born…” is how many distinguished slave narratives begin (Prince 1). This infamous phrase establishes powerful anecdotes that demonstrate unforgettable events in history. Notable authors such as Frederick Douglass and Linda Brent capture their audience with undebatable authenticity. Similarly, Mary Prince, author of the narrative, The History of Mary Prince, utilizes similar themes and strong diction to expose the injustice of slavery. Prince uses allusions, imagery, and pathos to construct convicting arguments about the abominable institution of slavery and disillusion the unawareness of her audience.
After reading Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, it is clear to see the true horrors behind the entirety of slavery. It is one thing to learn about it from a textbook or to sit through a lecture, but it is a completely different experience to get an account of how grossly inhumane, frightening, and appalling slavery really was from someone who experienced the terrors first-hand. Reading this narrative provided extremely descriptive details of how slaves truly were treated. Douglass recounted the time where he had often:
It is well known in today’s American society that slavery is horrific. However, throughout the 1800s, slavery was a common practice in the South. Slave owners sought great profit in the free labor of slaves and saw no harm in slavery. It is well known that slavery was substandard for the slaves, but slaves such as Frederick Douglass viewed it as also unfavorable for the slaveholders. Throughout Douglass’s book, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, Douglass tells of his experiences as a slave and provides numerous examples of how slavery is substandard for slaveholders.
My paper is an attempt to analyze the entire era of slavery and its later effects upon the lives of Africans who were brought forcefully to America as slaves and even after its abolition were treated inhumanly. My major attempt is to get an in depth insight of the struggles of these people for their survival in such an environment and the predicament of black women who were doubly oppressed; were the victims of both the whites and black men; and treated as naked savages and beasts, with Alice Walker’ masterpiece and Pulitzer prize winning The Color Purple. I have taken this project with my keen interest because the novel touched me deeply and I wanted to analyze it thoroughly.
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, brings to light many of the social injustices that colored men, women, and children all were forced to endure throughout the nineteenth century under Southern slavery laws. Douglass's life-story is presented in a way that creates a compelling argument against the justification of slavery. His argument is reinforced though a variety of anecdotes, many of which detailed strikingly bloody, horrific scenes and inhumane cruelty on the part of the slaveholders. Yet, while Douglas’s narrative describes in vivid detail his experiences of life as a slave, what Douglass intends for his readers to grasp after reading his narrative is something much more profound. Aside from all the
The History of Mary Prince was a seminal work of the nineteenth century, which today remains an important historical device. Mary Prince’s story is not unique, but the circumstances and context surrounding her novel are. Defying contemporary standards and beliefs, The History of Mary Prince demonstrates the atrocities of slavery, but also a distinctive and deliberate political message. The History of Mary Prince is not only important for its demonstration of human suffering and the legal history it documents, but it also offers insight into the British abolition movement. Twofold, it remains an important text through both its straightforward portrayal of facts and experience as well as its underlying careful manipulation of political and moral themes. The History of Mary Prince served as an influential abolitionist piece of writing, but furthermore can incite multiple layers of interpretation and analysis of the abolition movement.
In the movie, 12 Years a Slave, there are many scenes where it shows that slavery had a dehumanizing effect on slaves and slaveowners. One specific scene that shows the dehumanizing effect is when Patsey gets whipped. In this scene, Master Epps strips Patsey of her clothes and ties her to a stake. After Master Epps ties her to the stake, he then attempts to whip her, but he finds that he cannot because his emotions overtake him due to the fact that he is having an affair with Patsey. Instead of whipping Patsey himself, he makes Solomon, another slave, whip Patsey.
In “The Horrors of Slavery,” written by Mary Prince, Prince describes her terrifying experience as a slave. The passage begins with the moment Prince and her sisters forcefully get torn away their mother and from each other when they get sold to a different owner, not knowing if they will ever see each other again. This has to be one of the most quintessential forms of torture that, unfortunately, many slaves were forced to endure in those times. It was bad enough for slaves that they continuously got mistreated by their owners, being treated as one’s own property and getting put up for auction like some type of valuable. However, by being separated from their friends and families, slaves were not even able to share their misery with the people
Douglass gives detailed anecdotes of his and others experience with the institution of slavery to reveal the hidden horrors. He includes personal accounts he received while under the control of multiple different masters. He analyzes the story of his wife’s cousin’s death to provide a symbol of outrage due to the unfairness of the murderer’s freedom. He states, “The offence for which this girl was thus murdered was this: She had been set that night to mind Mrs. Hicks’s baby, and during the night she fell asleep, and the baby cried.” This anecdote, among many others, is helpful in persuading the reader to understand the severity of rule slaveholders hold above their slaves. This strategy displays the idea that slaves were seen as property and could be discarded easily.
Slavery has always been the most dreadful phenomena of our world. Slavery, by itself looks so unusual and provokes mixed feelings from the heart of each person. In other words, slavery change a human being into a “thing” or even some type of consumer item. However, a fugitive slave, Frederick Douglass writes the novel called “The Narrative of the life of Frederick Douglass” to reveal how the slavery system works. Douglass’ narrative resembles not so much an autobiography as a memoir. If we read this novel closely, women often appear not in a primary plot, but in a short passage and as a vivid images; specifically, an image of abused bodies. Douglass associates women with suffering. Also, he gives an understanding
“SLAVERY was abolished 150 years ago, right? While it is true that slavery is illegal almost everywhere on earth, the fact is there are more slaves today than there ever were…” Despite the grim reality described in this quote, I believe Robert Alan successfully undermines a common misconception held by Americans, both young and old. Although we are brought up thinking that Abraham Lincoln with his Emancipation Proclamation along with the Civil War Amendments brought an end to the enemy known as slavery, in today’s society, however, that is sadly not the case. The harsh reality is that this problem never truly
“Slavery is an institution for converting men into monkeys.” What if all our rights were stripped from us when we wake up tomorrow? Slavery is something many of us can hardly imagine. Being bought and sold like a savage, getting treated like property, unprotected from slander and insults, being denied the basic rights of humanity, and being systematically subdued by society to think that you are no better than the dirtiest animals that live on the earth. Bread to work long grueling days, slaves lead a life facilitated to them by masters that regarded them no higher than the dirt on the ground. The evils caused by slavery were not just inflicted upon the slaves; these evils put our country’s social and political atmosphere in a vice for