During the post-bellum period, both Blacks and Whites fought to define the social structure of the New South following the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment. Blacks sought to express their freedom in the simplest terms through the control of their own political, economic, and social life. Nonetheless, humiliation and injustice defined freedom for Blacks in the New South as institutions, both federal and local, failed to support the rule of law. A rigid framework crafted through means of power and fear came to define the social status of the “New Negro”. However, within the framework existed a small amount of fluidity which acted as the motive power for African Americans as they transitioned from a long freedom struggle into the Civil Rights movement.
Prior to the Civil War, African Americans were treated as second class individuals. They lacked the freedom and equality they sought for. To the African Americans, the Civil War was a war of liberation. Contrary to what African Americans perceived, Southerners viewed the war as an episode of their journey to salvation. Southern lands may have been destroyed and depleted, but the South was persistent that their racial order would not be disrupted.
In America this is the main focus of slavery that is a shared belief taught in the education system. Slavery was tragic, but where would slave be if Abraham Lincoln ... ... middle of paper ... ...can descendant had to fight for freedom that others seemed to have been born with just because of the color of skin. However it only proves that no force was more responsible for destroying slavery then the slaves themselves using barefoot plebiscite. People of African descent often are excluded from the glory of history books, and recognition to contributing modern society. I am persuaded that a focus on agency rather than victimization, not only gives people of african descendants credit but also challenges the idea that oppressors were the ones that free those who were oppressed.
Black people needed to become aware of their collective power both economically and politically. People of African descent must create their own value system, where they were self-defined not defined by white superiors. Therefore Black Consciousness’ main belief was, that racial domination had become internalized, thus causing low self-esteem, which in turn allowed room for political disunity and encouraged a dependence on white leadership. The philosophy of Black Consciousness was to break this set of attitudes and form a new belief in black self-reliance and dignity. It was only when this was achieved could black the man truly be liberated both physically and mentally.
In the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, Written by Himself, Frederick Douglass establishes for us the many factors that lead to the continual enslavement of the black race by connecting his own plight to that of other slaves as a plea for the abolition of slavery. The evil of slavery infected every master to pervert the truth to his own satisfaction and Douglass explains how slavery corrupts the humanity of both slave and master. The legal system was also not an option for slaves to turn to for help because they had no legal rights. The fear of losing friends and never being able to trust anyone again was enough to keep many back in bondage. And the lack of education left their minds dulled to any thoughts beyond what they already knew which was just their own miserable condition.
After the civil war, newly freed slaves faced many challenges. Whites, especially in the south, regarded blacks as inferior more than ever before. The black codes were just one obstacle the freed slaves had to overcome. They were laws that were passed in the southern states that had the intent and the effect of restricting African Americans freedom. These laws made it possible for the south to regain control over the black population in much of the same ways they had before.
He believed that in order to become equals, the black community needed to climb to the level of whites. To do so blacks would need to be educated and to get involved in practical occupations. Washington believed that education was the key to Black economic success, thus his intended Faustian Bargain. He argued that giving up civil rights, higher education, and political rights, blacks would be given an economic opportunity. Washington suggested such a bargain, because he believed that races needed to start at the bottom, and work their way up gradually, as he states, “I have learned that success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed.” (xroads.virginia.edu).
Lemann states the purpose of this book is to answer the question “what kinds of lives black people might live in the South now depended on the freed slaves’ organizing abilities and on the reliability of their voting rights” (xi). The subtitle, The Last Battle of the Civil War, correctly states that although the Civil War had officially ended the battle stilled raged physically, politically, and through public sentiment. First, Lemann documents horrible accounts of violence against freed blacks. The casual observer views the underlying reasons for these attacks as simple racial hatred. However, Lemann connects the acts of violence to show an orchestrated movement intended to undermine both keys to the freed blacks’ quality of life, organizing abilities and voting rights.
Furthermore, through focusing on the lot of their enslaved brothers and sisters in the South, instead of refreshing White New Englanders memory of their own enslavement, Melish argues, they became complicit in creating the amnesia surrounding their own slave past. To that end, they were literally “thought out” of the community, which increasingly defined itself as antithesis to the recalcitrant South—the prototype of a “white” republic built on “free” labor. African Americans had to confront racist attitudes even when they intended to
The Underground Railroad was a network of roads and houses that helped thousands of African American slaves become free from the south. Slavery was easily one the worst atrocities of human rights violations in history as it violated a person’s freedom, and it made a person become property for another. Several individuals believed in the rights of African Americans because under the constitution, they were individuals too who deserved the same rights to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness; none of which were available to slaves. The Underground Railroad was a movement that came about from individuals who supported abolition, and it was a step to free black people from the bonds of captivity. The hope and the actual freedom that slaves received