Incidents in the life of a slave girl is a memoir written by Harriet Jacobs in which she explains the hardships African Americans experienced under slavery. Slaves were defined as property and inferior to white men, this gave their owners the right under the law to treat them as they pleased, deny them of basic human rights, and deny their liberty. To protect their families, many slaves escaped to the Free States, but soon realized there was segregation between African Americans and White Americans as well as extradition laws that would send fugitive slave back to their owners in the south. Slavery was almost impossible to resist since slaves did not hold any rights, their lives were controlled by someone else and if slaves escaped to the Free
Slavery: The Double-Edged Sword To be black is to be naturally inferior; this was the mindset of the American South in the beginning of the 19th century. African Americans were confined to slavery with no means to change their situation or to escape the abuse that often accompanied their position. Slaves endured all forms of physical and mental punishment whose sole purpose was to keep them inferior to their white suppressors. Slaves were maintained through ignorance; they had their self-identity stolen from them and were kept illiterate to prevent them from questioning what power kept them oppressed and to prevent them from spreading word of the brutalities they faced. To be a slave meant to live a doomed life.
They always lived there and will probably die there, right on the plantation where they were born.” Blacks were viewed as individuals without a purpose or viewed as nothing, like they had no value. Blacks faced great punishment if they spoke out or acted out against a white individual. The great punishments they faced were lashings on the backs, put into shackles, were chained to the ground, and other horrible punishments. (Black Peoples of America- Slave Punishments) A Black individual explained, “My father was born and brought up as a slave. He never knew anything else until after I was born.
Since adopted slave owners were married into slave owning and weren’t raised among slavery, Douglass believed that they didn’t know how to tr... ... middle of paper ... ... master practiced. He came to the conclusion that being religious didn’t show their goodness as people but instead brought out their brutality. The Life of Fredrick Douglass shows how slavery could of not only affected the slaves but the owners as well. Thomas Auld was overall a cowardly owner and quite tough compared to other slaveholders. Douglass believed that since Auld obtained slave owning from marriage, it made him more of an unpleasant master because he wasn’t used to being around slavery and having so much power.
The racism towards the African Americans who were slaves was at its extreme as they did not have any rights; no civil nor political rights. The conditions were worse for the slaves, and they decided to resist in order to free themselves from the slavery institution. African slaves used various strategies of resistance to slavery. According to Hine, Hine, and Harrold (66), “such resistance ranged from shirking assigned work to sabotage, escape and rebellion”. African American slaves had three forms of resistance against slavery which were; escaping, day-to-days acts and rebellion against their masters.
Slaveholders were expected to treat slaves as something less than human, which drove slave owners to enforce cruel and barbaric reprimands toward slaves. Frederick Douglass argues that slavery manipulates a person’s identity, mainly because of social expectations. There were rules and laws to abide to in regard of slaves; among the primary issues, slaves had no purpose in having the ability to read or write, while Douglass was being taught by an oblivious Mrs. Auld. Douglass’ mistress, had never owned a slave before Douglass, because of this, Mrs. Auld was not aware of how she was expected to treat a slave. Frederick Douglass relates how kindly and goodhearted Mrs. Auld was before her husband taught her the “correct” manner of treating a slave.
This truly appeals to the audience’s emotions, as the slaves were stripped of something that most people would take for granted. The slaves had little to no opportunity to speak out against the injustice as slaves cannot sue nor testify. Additionally, upon learning how to read and write, Douglass becomes depressed and suicidal as he learns of the true nature of slavery.
They cannot have their own property. They do not have their own place to sleep and where they could sleep is the black area where is far away from the place they worked. The most serious thing for African slaves is they cannot speak their own language and write their words when they were forced to work. People who enslaved African slaves deprive their right to continue and remember their culture. As time goes, many countries abolished slavery because of common revolt.
To conclude, due to the lack of education and clichéd thought, African Americans didn’t receive the same respect and opportunity as compared to Whites. To wrap it up, African Americans lived an unfair past in the south, such as Alabama, during the 1930s because of discrimination and the misleading thoughts towards them. The Ku Klux Klan, Jim Crow Laws and the way they were generally treated in southern states all exemplify this merciless time period of the behavior towards them. They were not given the same respect, impression, and prospect as the rest of the citizens of America, and instead they were tortured. Therefore, one group should be never singled out and should be given the same first intuition as the rest of the people, and should never be judged by color, but instead by character.
Not only children have been separated from their families, but were sent to different places to slavery, because it means they have been owned by someone else and became the property of others. Therefore, they had no rights over their children because there was no connection call his family or to allow say "my daughter", "my mother" or "sister" because they had lost this right. "Blacks have always been masters of figuration: saying one thing to say something quite different were at the base of the black survival in the oppressive Western cultures" (Gates, 1984, 6). This shows that blacks obeyed whites, although they were very hard in his generation. Back in time for blacks, it was very important to have your own house with an address instead of living with other workers or farmers in a small room.