Incidents in the life of a Slave Girl




Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl Essay

No one in today’s society can even come close to the heartache, torment, anguish, and complete misery suffered by women in slavery. Many women endured this agony their entire lives, there only joy being there children and families, who were torn away from them and sold, never to be seen or heard from again. Thesis
In the book, Incidents in the Life of Slave Girl, Linda Brent tells a spectacular story of her twenty years spent in slavery with her master Dr. Flint, and her jealous Mistress. She speaks of her trials and triumphs as well as the harms done to other slaves. She takes you on the inside of slavery and shows you the Hell on Earth slavery really was. She tells you the love and heartbreak she experienced being an unmarried slave mother. At around the age of twenty or so, Linda escapes and ends up in very small garret only nine foot long and seven foot wide. So small she could not even stand up. She lived in this hole with no light, no fresh air, and barely ever moved for almost seven years. She finally escaped and made it to the North where she and her children lived much happier and most of all they lived free.
Linda Brent said, "Slavery is terrible for men, but is far more terrible for women." She makes a good and true point, for when her life and the life of other slave women is compared to men’s, mentally, slavery takes a much larger toll on the suffering of women. Women are responsible for their children, because the children follow the mother and mothers often fill guilty for bringing children into the cruel world of slavery. As Linda Brent expresses, "I often prayed for death; but now I didn’t want to die, unless my child could die too . . .(Benny) it’s clinging fondness was a mixture of love and pain . . . Sometimes I wished that he (Benny) might die in infancy . . .Death is better than slavery". In the book Linda has mixed feelings about her children because she so dearly loves them. She doesn’t want them to suffer in slavery as she has so she wishes they would die, but she loves them and she doesn’t want to lose them as many slave mothers had. How torn and incapable she must have felt as a slave mother. Linda also speaks of "The Slaves New Year’s Day", this was the time that slaves everywhere were sold and leased. Many mothers were torn from their husbands and their children. Linda speaks of one woman she witnessed, "I saw a mother lead seven children to the auction-block. She knew that some of them would be taken from her; but they took all . . .(The woman screamed) Gone! All gone! Why don’t God kill me?" Linda explains that things like this happen daily, even hourly. This is only a small piece of the torture it was to be a woman in slavery. Linda’s master often made perverted comments to her in which she expressed as to filthy to tell. He began to fill her mind with awful thoughts and words. He often slapped Linda and kicked her around. He was constantly threatening her and her life explaining that he would never sell her and that she would be in their damily as long as he had an heir. When Linda became pregnant with the son of a white man, he became very angry and he constantly reminded her that her baby was to be his property, like a piece of land to be bought. When she had the boy she named Benjamin, he was premature and she became very ill. She refused to let anyone send for a doctor, because the only doctor that could treat her was Dr. Flint. Finally when they thought she would die they sent for her master. He treated her and she refused him as much as possible, but she lived and so did her little Benny, although sometimes she wished he would’ve died. Almost three years later she had a daughter who she called Ellen which angered him even more and