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Slavery In Solomon Northup's 12 Years A Slave

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The book 12 Years a Slave follows the story of Solomon Northup, a free man that was sold into slavery in 1841. The work describes his inner most thoughts and feelings as he finds himself being beaten and forced to work. He is given a new name that robs him of his identity and pushes him to forget about his freedom in New York as well as the family that he left behind. The book discusses the depth of slavery and what went on in Solomon’s twelve years of entrapment. It also explores the lives of other slaves and how they were treated by their masters. Throughout the book, these characters demonstrate the ups and downs of slavery as well as the reality of being held captive. Overall, Solomon Northup's book depicts the diversity in tasks and treatment…show more content…
Slave owners rarely doubted the moral right of one man holding another in subjection. They were degrading human beings and making them suffer awful torments in order to make a profit. This is why 12 Years a Slave is such a compelling story. It describes tragic tales of slaves by giving the full truth and depicting everyday life as a slave in the Antebellum South. Northup describes his journey with his many slave masters and educates his audience on what tasks and treatment slaves had to deal with on a daily basis. He does this by detailing the abuses he endured as well as the abuses he was forced to inflict on others. He also captured the various master’s personalities and used them to showcase the different tactics that were used to keep slaves in submission. Thirdly, Northup shared other slaves’ stories to show how they differ from his own and to discuss the negative physical, emotional, and spiritual effects. The book describes what different characters experienced under varied circumstances. Some slaves had kind masters, whereas others had cruel dictators. In short, the slave owner’s disposition and personality did determine how their slaves would be treated. Comparatively, the type of jobs that slaves did depended on their environment as well as their skill set. Therefore, 12 Years a Slave is a gripping memoir that addresses the diversity of slavery in full color and provides a clear warning of the moral consequences slavery disregards. The slaves were not the only ones that were affected. Slave owners were desensitized and stripped of their morals. They forgot that blacks were humans too. The natural human interactions of love, justice, and respect were lost at the time this work was written. In spite of this, Northup’s testimony is proof that faith and hope can overcome any
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