Saturday, December 21, 2019

Comparing Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an...

Comparing Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave and Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl What provokes a person to write about his or her life? What motivates us to read it? Moreover, do men and women tell their life story in the same way? The answers may vary depending on the person who answers the questions. However, one may suggest a reader elects to read an autobiography because there is an interest. This interest allows the reader to draw from the narrators experience and to gain understanding from the experience. When the reader involves him/herself in the experience, the reader encounters what is known and felt by the narrator. The encounter may provide the reader an opportunity to explore a†¦show more content†¦Although Douglass and Jacobs experiences support the personal as political, their narratives further explore the residual effects of slavery: 1) to prohibit the identity of male and female slave, and 2) to marginalize the slaves presence in society. The problem of identity plagues Douglass. Unable to establish a sense of self, Douglass questions his age and parentage. From the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, he states, I have no accurate knowledge of my age [...] (1824). Douglass concern about his age is a sign that he lacks knowledge important to who is he. For Douglass, his age would confirm the years he has been in bondage. By questioning his age, Douglass characteristically connects to the American Renaissances quest to examine and explore oneself in society. Douglass further inquires about his parents: My mother was named Harriet Bailey. [...] My father was a white man. He was admitted to be such by all I ever heard speak of my parentage. The opinion was also whispered that my master was my father; but of the correctness of this opinion, I know nothing; the means of knowing was withheld from me. My mother and I were separated when I was but an infant-before I knew her as my mother. (Douglass 1824-1825) Failure to obtain the knowledge of his paternity and separation from his mother prevents a familial connection. William McFreelysShow MoreRelatedJacobs Douglass: An Insight Into The Experience of The American Slave1019 Words   |  5 PagesThe slave narratives of the ante-bellum time period have come across numerous types of themes. Much of the work concentrates on the underlining ideas beneath the stories. In the narratives, fugitives and ex-slaves appealed to the humanity they shared with their readers during these times, men being lynched and marked all over and women being the subject of grueling rapes. The slave narrative of Frederick Douglas and Harriet Jacobs: Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl themes come from the existenceRead MoreEssay on Out of the Silence1445 Words   |  6 PagesThe slave narrative genre is an important part of American history. These stories are not only portraits of individual history, but also of American history. By reading the stories of the past we can better determine the path of the future. The personal stories of Frederick Douglass and Harriet Jacobs are two excellent examples of the slave narrative genre in American literature. 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