Douglass went through several life changes, from being a slave to having freedom. He went from the south to the north, from a young man to a well known and respected speaker. This man helped America come to terms with slavery which was an important factor in the abolitionist movement. Works Cited Frederick Douglass, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, Written by Himself (New York, N.Y.: W.W. Norton and Company, 1997).
Throughout the book Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave many themes are developed relating to slavery. Such themes that are well developed include corruption, brutality, and knowledge. Perhaps the most important theme that was developed was knowledge and its power in everything. Frederick Douglass gained knowledge throughout his life, defying the laws surrounding slavery. Perhaps one of the most impressive things from the life of Frederick Douglass was the fact that, except for a few months at the beginning of his engagement with Mr. and Mrs. Auld, he was a self taught man who took it upon himself to expand his knowledge.
Things you see today such as bibles, textbooks and hieroglyphics are key to understanding the people who lived before us. Without these written information, one would not know about the true hardship and bloodshed of the past. Frederick Douglass created his autobiography in order to show his conditions within slavery. This act was one of the many influential factors that motivated the abolishment of slavery. His ideas are still viewed today to show people the importance of reading and writing.
Many of the northerners also discovered it hard to believe that such a great speaker had been a slave. Douglas wrote numerous autobiographies, powerfully telling his experiences in slavery in his 1845 autobiography, narrative of the life of Fredrick Douglass, an American Slave, which turns out to be significant in its support for abolition. Douglass wrote two more autobiographies, his last autobiographies, life and times of Frederick Douglass, which was published in 1881 covers the events through and after the Civil War. After Civil War, Douglass stayed active in the United States’ fight to reach its potential as a “land of the free”. Douglass also actively reinforced women’s suffrage.
Jasmine Rosemore American Literature 27 February 2014 The True Origin The interesting narrative published in 1789 by Olaudah Equiano is an autobiography telling his experience as a captive in the transatlantic slave trade. Although the story is meant to entertain readers, it also furthered the cause of abolition. In the narrative of “The interesting life of Olaudah Equiano,” Equiano says that he is from South Carolina but through his description of Africa portrays it as his home. This is important because it shows a man struggling to reveal his true origin in order to go forth in fighting for a purpose and struggling to find within himself his true identity. By looking at character behavior we can see that Equiano feels as if he is a man of different worlds because of the experience he went through.
In his narrative, Douglass describes the situations and conditions that portray the differences between the two terms. Douglass also depicts the progression he makes from internalizing the slaveholder viewpoints about what his identity should be to creating an identity of his own making. Thus, Douglass’ narrative depicts not simply a search for freedom, but also a search for himself through the abandonment of the slave/animal identity forced upon him by the institution of slavery. The reader is first introduced to the idea of Douglass’s formation of identity outside the constraints of slavery before he or she even begins reading the narrative. By viewing the title page and reading the words “The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, written by himself” the reader sees the advancement Douglass made from a dependent slave to an independent author (Stone 134).
The history of the abolition of slavery in the United States is full of description of events that took place before and after the American Civil War. History attaches importance to various people that prominently fought for the abolition of slavery. Amongst these people, Fredrick Douglass features prominently. As one of the most outspoken abolition campaigners, Fredrick Douglass provides a rich background for the study of the history of slavery and abolitionism in the United States. Fredrick Douglass, through his autobiography of Narrative of the Life of Fredrick Douglass, provides an insight into the practices of slavery in the United States.
Adaptation of Modern African-American Writers Modern writers learn from the past by reading works written by authors of that particular era. Contemporary African-American writers gain knowledge and insight into the horrendous and sometimes harmonious conditions that plagued Africans during slavery and the slave trade. By reading the actual words, thoughts, and feelings of these enslaved Africans, modern writers receive information from the perspective of the victimized. Lucille Clifton's "slaveship" is a vivid example of a contemporary writer borrowing from the past to depict another account of the slave trade. The fact that Clifton's father told her stories about her family's struggle and she, herself, traced her lineage back to Dahomey, West Africa helped to impact the tone, ideas, and imagery used in her poem.
Frederick Douglass was a slave and well known reformer during the mid to late eighteen hundreds. In addition to his abolitionist causes, he is also known for his writing, which includes several autobiographies as well as his support for women’s rights. His autobiography titled the “Narrative of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave” centers around his life as a former slave from his birth through his escape from slavery later on. During this time, the publication focuses on the way he was treated by slaveholders and their wives, good and bad, and the thoughts that he had about slavery and the effects that it has on African American’s as well as whites. His purpose for writing the autobiography was to appeal to everyone including slaves, women and slaveholders, and to show what slaves go through.
One of the reasons why The Liberator impacted Douglass was because of his need for backup in his fight for the freesom of black slaves, and due to the inspiration that sparked when he had listened to Garrisons speech on 1841, at the Bristol Anti-Slavery Society's annual meeting ("Frederick Douglas 1818-1895."). Since Douglass had been born a slave, he was born with the will to fight for the freedom of African-Americans. Therefore he tried to educate himself by attending abolitionists' meetings and subscribing to Garrison’s newspaper, the Liberator ("Frederick Douglass 1818-1895"). While his involvement with Garrison’s newspaper, he had stated "no face and form ever impressed me with such sentiments [the hatred of slavery] as did those of William Lloyd Garrison." which impressed Garrison enough to mention him in The Liberator.