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How does Frederick Douglass use rhetoric throughout his narr

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Grace Heaberlin

on 12 July 2014

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Transcript of How does Frederick Douglass use rhetoric throughout his narr

The (Mis)Education of Frederick Douglass
“The silver trump of freedom had roused my soul to eternal wakefulness” (Douglass 24). Metaphor

Douglass uses this metaphor to show that although learning is a gift, it opens up his mind to the real issue of slavery.

“Freedom now appeared, to disappear no more forever.  It was heard in every sound, and seen in every thing” (Douglass 24). Antithesis
This antithesis emphasizes how his new knowledge now makes freedom a thought that never leaves his mind, and adds power to his writing because it appeals to the senses, showing that he not only thought about freedom but also saw and heard it. 

The Way out
Clinton Hillary. "Remarks on Internet Freedom." U.S. Department of State. U.S. Department of State, 21 Jan. 2010. Web. 12 Nov. 2013.
Douglass, Frederick. "From The Autobiography Of Frederick Douglass, 1817-1895." From The Autobiography Of Frederick Douglass, 1817-1895 (2009): 1. MasterFILE Premier. Web. 14 Nov. 2013.
Newman, John, and John Schmalbach. United States History. New York: Amsco, 2010. Print.
How does Frederick Douglass use rhetoric throughout his narrative to promote the ideals of freedom?
“My long-crushed spirit rose, cowardice departed, bold defiance took its place; and 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” (Douglass 43). Personification
Douglass’s use of personification here shows how he felt after finally accepting slavery as it really is. Instead of being upset about it, he begins to feel angry and defiant.
How does Frederick Douglass use rhetoric throughout his narrative to illustrate the evils of slavery and the effects upon the enslaved/slaveholder?
Enumeratio-"He was a cruel man. I have seen hum whip a woman, causing the blood to run half an hour at the time; and this, too, in the midst of her crying children, pleading for their mother's release. (Douglass 7).

Amplification- "He was a very different man. He was less cruel, less profane, and made less noise, than Mr. Severe." (Douglass 7).
Fustian-"He seemed to take pleasure in manifesting his fiendish barbarity" (Douglass 7).

To what extent was Frederick Douglass able to change the national set of values through his individual actions?

“That cheerful eye, under the influence of slavery, soon became red with rage; that voice, made all of sweet accord, changed to one of harsh and horrid discord; and that angelic face gave place to that of a demon” (Douglass 19).

Through this quote, you can tell that slavery could completely change a person from sweet and loving to hateful and cruel. After others read this, I believed that they would want to change how slavery completely changed a person.

“We thought him instrumental in getting Mr. Samuel Harrison, a very rich slaveholder, to emancipate his slaves; and by some means got the impression that he was laboring to effect the emancipation of all the slaves” (Douglass 33).

Through this quote Douglass shows that he and the other slaves were smart enough now to be able to tell that Mr. Samuel Harrison was going to be useful in trying to emancipate all slaves, and they began to use that idea to help do it.

“He could not come among us without betraying his sympathy for us, and, as stupid as we were, we had the sagacity to see it” (Douglass 33).
With this quote, Douglass emphasized the affect he and the other slaves had on Mr. Samuel Harrison. Because Douglass had this affect on someone who wanted the emancipation of all slaves, we begin to see a movement forward away from slavery here.
In the novel Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, how is education related to human freedom?
Well according to one of Douglass’ masters, Master Hugh, ““Learning would SPOIL the best (expletive) in the world. He would at once become unmanageable, and of no value to his master. As to himself, it could do him no good, but a great deal of harm. It would make him discontented and unhappy”” (36).
But Douglass believed this: “The reading of these documents enabled me to utter my thoughts, and to meet the arguments brought forward to sustain slavery; but while they relieved me of one difficulty, they brought on another even more painful than the one of which I was relieved. The more I read, the more I was led to abhor and detest my enslavers. I could regard them in no other light than a band of successful robbers, who had left their homes, and gone to Africa, and stolen us from our homes, and in a strange land reduced us to slavery. I loathed them as being the meanest as well as the most wicked of men. As I read and contemplated the subject, behold! that very discontentment which Master Hugh had predicted would follow my learning to read had already come, to torment and sting my soul to unutterable anguish” (42).
Even Sophia Auld was “chained” in a way by education, for she was not allowed to teach him: “In entering upon the duties of a slaveholder, she did not seem to perceive that I sustained to her the relation of a mere chattel, and that for her to treat me as a human being was not only wrong, but dangerously so. Slavery proved as injurious to her as it did to me” (39).
Why is universal education necessary for a free society?
A universal education is very important for a free society. Even Hillary Clinton notes that with the spread of technology and, consequently, education, some countries are stripping their people of these useful resources and in turn, their freedom, justifying Douglass’ point of education=freedom: “In the last year, we’ve seen a spike in threats to the free flow of information. China, Tunisia, and Uzbekistan have stepped up their censorship of the internet. In Vietnam, access to popular social networking sites has suddenly disappeared. And last Friday in Egypt, 30 bloggers and activists were detained. One member of this group, Bassem Samir, who is thankfully no longer in prison, is with us today. So while it is clear that the spread of these technologies is transforming our world, it is still unclear how that transformation will affect the human rights and the human welfare of the world’s population” (“Remarks on Internet Freedom”).
Why was Douglass’ narrative considered “radical” when published? IS it still?
Douglass’s book was considered radical, not only because it was written during the time of his fugitive escape from slavery, but referred to real people, real events and exposed the seedy underside of slavery, especially in its especially cruelty nature in the south. Douglass included countless detailed record of abuse, mistreatment and total disregard for life by his owners and those surrounding him, everything from submitting slaves the humiliation of shoveling their food out of trough like animals to the murder of poor Demby. Douglass knew that if he were caught he would not only be taken back to his master, but it’d be likely that his former masters or their families would exact revenge on him for slandering them and exposing their inhumane natures. Thus Douglass did leave to stay in England to raise the awareness there of the troubled slave system and fund for his own freedom so that he could return to America and further expose and exterminate that “peculiar institution”, which is what Southerners referred to slavery as (Newman and Schmalbach 171).
How did the South justify slavery?
Douglass describes religion in the South as “a mere covering for the most horrid crimes, -- a justifier of the most appalling barbarity, -- a sanctifier of the most hateful frauds, -- and a dark shelter under, which the darkest, foulest, grossest, and most infernal deeds of slaveholders find the strongest protection” (79).
The South not only uses religion as a “cover” for slavery, but also economics as well, even coming up with the Three Fifths Compromise, “which counted each slave as three-fifths of a person for the purposes of determining a state’s level of taxation and representation” (Newman and Schmalbach 99).
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