Frederick Douglass Essays 1-8

*Essay 1*: In slavery, the dehumanization of blacks went beyond the fact that they were considered property. Discuss the ways in which slaveholders stripped the humanity of their slaves according to stories shared in the Narrative.

Thesis:
In his Narrative, Douglass illustrates a number of ways in which blacks are dehumanized by slavery even beyond the fact that they were considered property.

Possible Points:
-Slaves typically had no knowledge of their birthdays
-Douglass uses descriptive language to suggest that slaveholders viewed slaves as animals
-Slaves were denied education
-Slaves were unable to build family ties as they could be ripped from their families at any moment
-Slaves were killed with little consequence

Evidence:
-Douglass did not know how old he was
-Slave children ate out of slop buckets like swine
-Hugh Auld’s speech on educating slaves
-Douglass was torn from his mother at a young age even prior to her death.
-Demby’s death and how ____________________ was not punished for it.

Sorry for the blank but I didn’t know what the heck to do 🙁

Mr. Gore
*Essay 2*: Explain how Douglass shows that slavery can negatively affect the humanity of slaveholders as well.

Thesis:
In his Narrative, Douglass demonstrates that slavery not only dehumanizes the enlsaved, but can also strip the humanity from slaveholders as well.

Possible Points:
-Sophia Auld’s change over time
-Mr. Covey turning into “a snake”
-The way slaveholders are able to injure or commit injustices of slaves without hesitation
-Thomas Auld and others show how slavery can corrupt one’s faith

Evidence:
-Sophia’s kindness being consumed by anger and cruelty after owning Douglass who was her first slave
-Douglass’ word choice to describe ________________ and his snakelike attributes
-Douglass’ views on religion and how Thomas Auld becomes crueler through religion as he uses the bible as justification for his actions, thus corrupting his religion

Mr. Covey
*Essay 3*: Explore how Douglass uses descriptive and figurative language to characterize Mr. Covey.

Thesis:
Douglass uses descriptive and figurative language to characterize Covey as a snake to suggest that slaveholding has stripped him of his humanity.

Possible Points:
-Word Choice

Evidence:
-“Coiled”
-“Crawling through the grass”
-“Cunning”
-“Deceitful”

10/10 would not recommend for an essay
just

*Essay 4*: According to Douglass, why did slave owners give their slaves holidays? Why was this practice not evidence of their kindness?

Thesis:
Slaveowners did not give holidays as acts of kindness towards the slaves, but rather as another means to control the slave.

Possible Points:
-Holidays given to quell rebellion spirit
-Used to make slaves equate their only memories of “freedom” with a sick feeling
-Slaves were not allowed to do as they pleases during holidays

Evidence:
-Slaves were expected to get very drunk over holidays, which would give them a sick feeling
-Slaves were not allowed to be productive over holidays, not even allowed to work

*Essay 5*: Explain how Douglass uses irony to examine the hypocrisy of Christian slaveholders.

Thesis: Douglass suggests that slavery corrupts the slaveholders religion, and in doing so, points out the hypocrisy of Christian slaveholders.

Possible Points:
-Thomas Auld and his justification through his religion
-Covey claimed piety but used one of his slaves as a breeder
-Men claiming to be Christian put an end to Douglass’ bible classes
-Freeland was not religious and was better to the slaves than many religious slaveholders

Evidence:
-Thomas Auld becomes more cruel through his religion
-Douglass’ Bible classes to slaves are shut down
-Freeland’s kindness

*Essay 6*: Explain how education is Douglass’ pathway to freedom in the Narrative.

Thesis: Douglass uses education throughout his Narrative as a way to find his individuality, and eventually his freedom.

Possible Points:
-His education gives him hope for a better life
-Reading gives Douglass a sense of self, thus starting his path to personal freedom
-Education also helps Douglass in a practical sense as his ability to read and write helps him devise and carry out a plan for escape
-Douglass believes no one is born free, but that we must make ourselves who we are through knowledge, education, and being aware of the world around him fills him with determination

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*Essay 7*: Analyze the quote “You have seen how a man was made a slave; you shall see how a slave was made a man.” How does Douglass define manhood?

Thesis: In the Narrative Douglass equates manhood with knowledge, freedom, and self assertion. In Chapter 10 Douglass declares “You have seen how a man was made a slave; you shall see how a slave was made a man.”

Possible Points:
-Analyze the quote
-Slavery takes away Douglass’ sense of self
-He claims this sense of self through education by standing up for himself against Covey
-Douglass seems to equate manhood with self-assertion

*Essay 8*: Analyze the quote “I now resolved that however long I might remain a slave in form, the day had passed forever when I could be a slave in fact.” In your discussion consider the idea of personal freedom versus legal freedom.

Being a slave in form is a state where one is not legally free.
Being a slave in fact is a state in which one isn’t personally free, has no self-assertion, and no sense of self.

Thesis:
Douglass demonstrates that to be truly liberated one needs both legal and personal freedom. After his epic fight with Covey Douglass declares “I now resolved that however long I might remain a slave in form, the day had passed forever when I could be a slave in fact.”

Possible Points:
-Analyze the quote
-Douglass must achieve personal freedom before he has the courage to gain his legal freedom.

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