The Fourth Of Slavery: A Document Analysis Of Frederick Douglass

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Document Analysis Paper Frederick Douglass made the most of his years after escaping from slavery in 1852. Douglass spread his words against slavery through being a well-known writer. Douglass was one of the most prominent reform leaders of his era (Foner, 481). A popular document written by Frederick Douglass on July 5th, 1852, spread some powerful words among the nation. Douglass’s speech was titled “What to the slave is the Fourth of July”. When his speech was published, his intended audience was his “fellow citizens” and those unaware that the Fourth of July was a day of mourning for slaves; unlike white Americans celebrating the day of freedom. The reason Douglass’s speech was published was to bring attention to the separation on the Fourth of July between white and black Americans. Even though Frederick Douglass was free he could not celebrate but mourn the day for horror of the past and presence of slave cruelty. Frederick Douglass’s speech was given to so many of his own people. The fact that Douglass speaks so harshly to them proves that he has passion for what he talks about through-out. “What to the slave is the Fourth of July”, compares and contrasts the different meanings the Fourth of July shared between Whites and African Americans. Douglass says “What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July? I answer: a day that reveals to him, more than all other days in the year, the gross injustice and cruelty to which he is the constant victim”. Frederick Douglass was not striving for the attention, he just wanted to get across that the Fourth of July is not a day of celebration to African Americans and the respect he shared with them, having once being a slave himself. Frederick Douglass was asked by Rochester cit... ... middle of paper ... ...ederick Douglass once said, “From the time that I can remember having any thoughts about anything, I recall that I had an intense longing to learn to read” (Douglass, 13). He always was determined and came a long way. He took his opportunity to give a speech during the celebration of the Fourth of July. Though to Douglass “Celebrations are a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages”. (Foner, 481). He made it clear of these crimes to those who wanted a speech to be given. He ends his amazing speech with a statement he has been working to prove all along… The Fourth of July is a dissatisfying reminder to him and his people of the cruelty and pain he has been through and what is going on. Frederick Douglass knows the past cannot be undone, but he will not celebrate, he will mourn for those who have been forced to sacrifice their freedom.

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