The Personal Experience of Slaves in The Slave Narrative by Frederick Douglass and the Similarities of Ideas in Self-Reliance by Emerson

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During the mid-nineteenth century, slavery was still practiced around most of the places in America. Frederick Douglass describes slavery according to ante-bellum African American in his “The Slave Narrative”. It is focused on the slave’s personal experiences who had fled from slavery and sheltered for safety in the northern states. Douglass is successful in describing his sufferings and pain in first person narrative, when he was a slave, in a very realistic and depicting manner. Emerson however has his key work on individuality by emphasizing the significance of thinking for oneself instead of modestly accepting other people's concepts. In most of his literature, he indorses individual involvement and experience over the understanding…show more content…
He has emphasized knowledge as a way or path to liberty and freedom. Douglass expressed his own self-education as the major means by which he was able to free himself, and used his knowledge as his ultimate tool to work for the independence of all slaves. He has mentioned that slavery as a system not only harmed just the captives but also their owners. Emerson’s believed that everyone should accept the position they are assigned in this world would be false for Douglass’s life. Douglass has said that the unethical and unreliable power that slave owner’s delight in over their slaves has a harmful effect on the owners’ own moral wellbeing. Using this particular theme, Douglass has completed overarching interpretation of slavery as unbeneficial for all slaves as well as owners. Like Emerson said, “Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind.” (Emerson, 1336). This quote clarifies his vision of trusting in our self and acting independently. He has expressed the view that we as an individual , we have unique vision and ideas, which in most case is not accepted by society as it follows a definite formula of one way career and is focused in materialistic prosperity rather than intellectual growth. Since these materialistic objectives are so engrained in us, we should learn to rely in our own instincts as to what society says us. Our society has its base on fears of chaos, and any different views or ideas if presented will make it

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