The Classic Slave Narrative

1028 Words5 Pages
The book The Classic Slave Narratives is a collection of narratives that includes the historical enslavement experiences in the lives of the former slaves Harriet Jacobs, Frederick Douglass, and Olaudah Equiano. They all find ways to advocate for themselves to protect them from some of the horrors of slavery, such as sexual abuse, verbal abuse, imprisonment, beatings, torturing, killings and the nonexistence of civil rights as Americans or rights as human beings. Also, their keen wit and intelligence leads them to their freedom from slavery, and their fight for freedom and justice for all oppressed people. In the autobiographical writings Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, Harriet Jacobs’ reflects on the times that her master Dr. Flint consistently tried to molest her sexually. In spite of her fears of horrible repercussions such as beatings or torture if she refuses to submit to him, Harriet always manages to evade his proposals to become his mistress by out-smarting him. She defends herself from his numerous attempts to seduce her, by the power of her mental strength and intelligence, and her Christian morality. While she fears him each time he secretly approaches her with his sexual propositions when he caught her alone, she could always think of ways to protect herself. For example she protects herself from the dangers of his sexual advances by removing herself from the master’s presence any opportunity she gets. She sometimes stays with her grandmother or aunt at night to protect herself from him. They are both Dr. Flint’s former slaves too who live on the plantation where she lives. Even though he threatens to kill her if she tells anyone, she tells his wife about his sexual advances, and Mrs. Flint invites Harriet to sl... ... middle of paper ... ...d from when he was just a baby. She remains on his master’s plantation miles from where he was. She sees him occasionally but only at night, until she dies when he is around seven years old. His master is intent upon never allowing him to bond with her, so when she dies he feels no emotion. Frederick tells of his experiences as a slave under two masters. The first one is called Captain employs a very cruel overseer Mr. Plummer. Frederick witnesses this man’s extreme acts of brutality towards female and male slaves; which includes beating them so savagely with cow skin, he cuts and slashes their heads and backs until they are bleeding profusely. He witnesses his own aunt being stripped and beaten to the point where her whole back is blood, in spite of her cries and screams for mercy. Works Cited THE CLASSIC SLAVE NARRATIVES WIKIPEDIA
Open Document