The Harrowing Story Of Harriet Jacobs

1284 WordsNov 29, 20166 Pages
The harrowing story of Harriet Jacobs experiences with slavery opens the reader’s eyes to the special cruelty women endured under the watchful eye of their masters and mistresses. And while Jacobs openly admits that slavery is terrible fate for both men and women, there are additional burdens added to women who are forced to live under the commands of another. Jacobs writes, “Slavery is terrible for men; but it is far more terrible for women. Superadded to the burden common to all, they have wrongs, and sufferings, and mortifications peculiarly their own.” This peculiar suffering Jacobs speaks of is often related to the morality of the soul, and the persistent pressure that women must endure under the control of their master, especially concerning rape and sexual harassment. Added on top of the physical punishment that all slaves experience, women, especially those born with beauty, suffer from moral failings when a master forces himself upon them. Furthermore, an additional pain women must endure, is that of motherhood. In a matriarchal society, women are responsible for the wellbeing of others, as was the case with Linda’s grandmother. Women has additional tethers to their lives which only serve to increase the pains of slavery. It is well known that black slaves in America faced many trials and tribulations, however, there are cruelties which women faced with the institution of slavery which were exclusive to their gender. For slave women, sexual harassment, and rape
Open Document