Fredrick Douglass

Fredrick Douglass\' narrative is a dramatic testimony of human will. His story is

intriging as well as compelling. This man lived in an era that we currently study with

amazement. He saw and understood the institution of slavery and the white man\'s

ideology, behind it. The "Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass", was written by

himself following his escape to New Bedford, New England. The version of

this passage has some resourceful history as a foundation for the reader. Explaining

important transitions in Douglass\' life and how the abolitionist movement came about in

the northeastern region of the American States. After England rid their country of

slavery, the Puritans sparked a rejuvenation of Christian morals in America. The

Jeremiads warned their fellow Christians of the evils of slavery and this initially started

the abolition movement. Douglass\' narrative is viewed primarily as abolitionist

propaganda however; it is clear that Mr. Douglass suffered the cruelties that he describes

in his life, prior to escape. He meet an activists named Garrison and after hearing

Douglass speak in Nantucket, Garrison hired him to give anti-slavery speeches across

New England. Garrison was an extremist with many aspects of the early American

government. Some of his views were so radical that he caused stagnation instead of

progress with the anti-slavery movement. Garrison and Douglass disagreed on certain

ideologies centered around the anti-slave movement. Once Douglass escaped and

received the Liberator for the first time, he then started participating in anti-slavery


Douglass\' writing style in his narrative was a brilliant display of understanding

your audience. He knew that his manuscript must be written in a way which would both

draw sympathy towards the abolitionists cause and not offend the Victorian culture who

would read it. The most profound idea that I found in this book came from his subtle

analogies of the suffrage of women and slaves. From the beginning of his story he starts

out with dark realities of slave women and sexual abuse from their masters. I think he

saw women in slavery as a different entity than men in slavery. Perhaps he felt that they

suffered more due to these extra duties which were demanded of them.

His mistress in Baltimore was the first kind white woman he had ever met. She

taught him to read until her husband justified how important it was to keep slaves

ignorant. Young Fredrick soon realized that slaves were not the only people who had

become suppressed to the white mans word. He felt apathy toward his mistress for her

world grew very hard and cold, once she had been introduced to the de-humanizing

institution of slavery. Many wives of slave owners had little more rights than the slaves

their husbands owned.

Douglass was a man before his time in all aspects. The mere capability to

conceive these revolutionary thoughts were achievement enough for a non-free African

American slave, of this era. Women\'s rights had not even been a realistic

accomplishment to acquire and so Douglass was discrete in his narrative when addressing

this issue. Fredrick Douglass, his third chosen last name, was a protegee. Did he come

into these ideas and inspirations out of necessity or chance? Probably a bit of both. He is

a hero of our country who struck courage into the hearts of many.