Although Frances E.W. Harper (1825-1911) lived in the enslaved state of Maryland, she was a free individual as a result of her parents’ social status. Harpers’ freedom allowed her to embark upon many opportunities that other blacks were not afforded. During her youth Harper’s parents passed away and she began to live with her aunt and uncle. While living with her aunt and uncle, Harper was acquainted with a new way of life that taught her about abolitionism and how to be a well rounded individual. After learning more about social injustices and seeing the ways in which they affected black people, Harper began to use writing as a positive outlet. She eventually became a teacher of poetry and taught vocational skills that were important during this time. However, teaching was not Harper’s passion and she felt that she needed to do something to improve the lives of the people of her race. Harper gave lectures about moving forward and demolishing social injustices. She gradually became one of the greatest black reformers, feminists, and civil rights activists in the nation. In the midst of fighting for civil rights Harper still continued to write poetry. She published one of her most famous works “The Slave Mother” during this t...
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...rsities of slavery. In Harper’s “The Slave Mother”, the mother cries hysterically and tries to fight for her child. Harper wrote the poem to be directed towards the audience and to get the engaged.
The poem “America” is similar to Fredrick Douglass’ address What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?. The works emphasize how Americans celebrate being a free country but they have millions of African Americans enslaved and oppressed. In Frederick Douglass’ address he says , “What to the 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” (Douglass 470). In his address he starts off by congratulating the white people on their independence. He then goes on to ask them why did they choose him to speak at this celebration when he is irrelevant on this day.
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