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Frederick Douglass prezi

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Audrey Byrd

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Transcript of Frederick Douglass prezi

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass

How does Frederick Douglass use rhetoric throughout his narrative to illustrate the evils of slavery?
To what extent was Frederick Douglass able to change the national set of values through his individual actions?
In the novel Narrative of the Life of Fredrick Douglas, how is education related to human freedom?
How does Frederick Douglass use rhetoric throughout his narrative to promote the ideals of freedom?
Throughout his narrative, Frederick Douglass promotes the ideals of freedom—equality, liberty, and progress—through rhetoric. The right “everyone” is inherent of is that of knowledge. Knowledge is the stepping-stone to all success and freedom within one’s self and society, a freedom that many American’s took, and still take, for granted. Douglass, desperate to gain this freedom, tiptoed behind the backs of his masters to do so.
According to Douglass, what were some of the effects of slavery upon the enslaved? Upon the slaveholder?
Frederick Douglass’ whole narrative highlights slavery as being evil and inhumane. He appeals to the emotions of Americans, particularly white Christian Americans, by incorporating personal anecdotes of the torture he endured and watched his loved ones endure. Perhaps the most gut-wrenching anecdote he incorporated was the story of his great grandmother.
He said, “Though conscious of the difficulty of learning without a teacher, I set out with high hope, and a fixed purpose, at whatever cost of trouble, to learn how to read” (20). The display of his perseverance and determination strengthens his credibility with the audience and appeals to their sympathies and exert guilt from their consciences. The beginning of chapter 7 marks a shift in the narrative. Douglass, after years of trials, “succeeded in learning to read and write” (22). This shift establishes the progress he has made in transitioning from hard work to rewards, hinting to the audience that the freedom he sought would be finally accomplished. Regrettably, the unjust treatment of blacks in the 1800s still reigned supreme.
The arrangement of chapter 7 is effective in reiterating the fact that Douglass is unable to escape the lack of equality and liberty he and so many African Americans faced. Soon after learning to read, he realized his trials were not over, saying to a group of boys, “‘You will be free as soon as you are twenty-one, but I am a slave for life! Have not I as good a right to be free as you have?’” (23). This lack of equality, the first ideal of freedom, evokes guilt from the Americans with connection to the unfair slaveholders and masters, even if just by association of race.
Why is universal education necessary for a free society?
Universal education is one of, if not the, most important aspect of having a free society. If everyone isn’t educated, then the society will collapse and someone who is educated could come in and easily take over. If one person has all the power, then it isn’t a free society anymore it’s a dictatorship. In chapter 8, Douglass gives this quote: “We had no more voice in that decision than the brutes among whom we were ranked. A single word from the white men was enough—against all our wishes, prayers, and entreaties…” This appeals to our character because he shows us that the white man only had to say one single word to strip everything a black man or woman had from them. It also guilt’s us into thinking that we’re monster that stripped a human being of every God-given right they were born with.
Why was Douglass’ narrative considered “radical” when published? Is it still?
Douglass’ novel was considered radical because he was a black man who was once a slave and should be total illiterate. Not only that, but it was highly respected by upper class white abolitionists which was very uncommon and some would say “radical” for that time period. No one had ever seen a former slave publishing a book before and since most people were still pro-slavery; there wasn’t a very positive feedback from a majority of the American citizens. As of today, it is not considered a radical book. We now think of Douglass as a hero of sorts and one of the most influential peoples during the abolitionist movement. He influenced many abolitionists throughout time including people like Douglass suffered many, many hardships throughout his life, and to put that all into a book was just simply amazing. His book may have not been incredibly popular back then, but now we get a glimpse of a first person perspective of what it was like to be a slave.
How did the South justify slavery?
The South justified slavery by saying that it was an essential part of American life and by saying that African-Americans would be treated better and live longer than if they were free. Howard Zinn, an American historian and author, says that slaves lived longer, had better clothing and food, and were less likely to die than if they worked in the factories. He also says slaves were treated better because someone owned them, so they’ll treat them better. Southerners constantly argued that slaves were a necessity for their plantations and without them there would be no one to pick their cotton or harvest their crops. Some slave owners even claimed that their slaves liked living on a plantation as a salve. Overall, I don’t find and of this true and think slavery was an inexcusable and should have been abolished much, much sooner.

Frederick Douglass’s individual actions influenced others to fight for their freedom and thus aided in America changing the national set of values, seeing slavery as awful rather than helpful. His emotional appeal throughout the narrative along with logical appeals helped persuade his audience into his point of view; the point of view of a slave. Douglass worked hard for freedom, and eventually, “was [his] own master” (68). Michael F. Hembree said, “Douglass recognized the symbolic as well as practical value of a viable black press in the struggle against slavery. He gave the paper his own name to emphasize to a skeptical public that a former slave could master the editor's craft” ("Frederick Douglass' Paper.").
Audrey Byrd
Alex Payne
Miss Smith
AP Language and Composition hour 7
12 November 2013
Douglass says, “If any one thing in my experience, more than another, served to fill me with unutterable loathing of slaveholders, it was their base ingratitude to my poor old grandmother… She had rocked him [her slaveholder] in infancy, attended him in childhood, served him through life, and at his death wiped from his icy brow the cold death-sweat… She was nevertheless left a slave [for life]” (28).

The audience is hit with guilt that a christian could do something so horrendous. Clearly, Douglass’s grandmother was not deserving of this harsh treatment. Many slaves made no offenses so large as to punish so cruely, but Douglass said “[slaves] were frequently whipped when least deserving” and that slaveholders could always find something to “justify the use of the lash” (10, 47). Though the circumstances represented in this novel, such as the dividing up of the animals and land after the death of Captain Anthony in chapter 8, were tough on the slaves, Douglass said, “I saw more clearly than ever the brutalizing effects of slavery upon both slave and slaveholder” (27). It must be difficult to establish a human being as having the same value as a sheep or a pig, though the value was the same in this time period. Nonetheless, Douglass represented the evils of slavery through emotional appeals and personal anecdotes.
Because of the publication of Frederick Douglass’s Paper, later renamed The North Star, Americans began respecting African-Americans as educated people with the ability to write and publish respectable works of literature and news. This change in the national set of values among Americans led others to follow in his footsteps. Leah R. Shafer speaks of the well-known Sojourner Truth, saying, “[she] was influenced by Frederick Douglass… Truth began singing, preaching, praying, and evangelizing wherever she could find an audience. At a time when even white women were rarely allowed to speak publicly, Truth stands out as an accomplished orator and leader in both the abolition and women's rights movements” ("When Woman Gets Her Rights Man will be Right (c. 1860, by Sojourner Truth)”). Many others were influenced by Douglass himself as well, and shaped our nation into what it is today.
Douglass, Frederick. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass. New York: Dover Publications, Inc., 1995. Print.

"Fredrick Douglass." Gale Virtual Reference Library. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 Nov. 2013. <http://go.galegroup.com/ps/retrieve.do?sgHitCountType=None&sort=RELEVANCE&inPS=true&prodId=GVRL&userGroupName=odl_tulsapub&tabID=T003&searchId=R3&resultListType=RESULT_LIST&contentSegment=&searchType=BasicSearchForm¤tPosition=1&contentSet=GALE%7CCX3410500023&&docId=GALE|CX3410500023&docType=GALE>.

"GVRL." Gale Virtual Reference Library. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 Nov. 2013. <http://go.galegroup.com/ps/>.

Hembree, Michael F. "Frederick Douglass' Paper." Encyclopedia of African-American Culture and History. Ed. Colin A. Palmer. 2nd ed. Vol. 2. Detroit: Macmillan Reference USA, 2006. 872. U.S. History in Context. Web. 13 Nov. 2013.

Shafer, Leah R. "When Woman Gets Her Rights Man will be Right (c. 1860, by Sojourner Truth)." Dictionary of American History. Ed. Stanley I. Kutler. 3rd ed. Vol. 9. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 2003. 329-330. U.S. History in Context. Web. 13 Nov. 2013.

Scruggs, Otey M. "Douglass, Frederick." World Book Advanced. World Book, 2013. Web. 14 Nov. 2013.



In the novel Narrative of the Life of Fredrick Douglass, Douglass learns that education is imperative for becoming free. In chapter 7, after Mrs. Auld teaches him his ABC’s, he says, “The first step has been taken. Mistress, in teaching me the alphabet, had given me the inch, and no precaution could prevent me from taking the ell” (33). He foreshadows that he plans to take that bit of education and use it to his fullest extent to be come free. Soon after, Douglass starts reading The Columbian Orator. Throughout reading it he realizes even more and more that slavery was a “horrible pit, but to no ladder upon which to get me out” (35). He realizes that one of the only things he can do to get out if this horrible pit is to become educated. Douglass evokes the reader’s sense of pathos by showing how awful slavery was and that we were just letting it happen. If you aren’t educated, then there’s nothing you can do to stop people form overpowering you and forcing you to do things for them. I see Douglass using Ethos a lot throughout his narrative. He uses it a lot when talking about his slaveholders and describing their character and how they act. He also points out irony in different situations throughout his life. One of the ironic situations would be when Mr. Gore kills the lave Demby because he was “setting a bad example” but is then recognized for his skill and talent as an overseer.
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