Essay on Fredrick Douglass - Famous Anti-Slavery Activist


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Fredrick Douglass was a famous anti-slavery activist as well as a fugitive slave who saw no point in celebrating Independence Day like the rest of the Americans. There was yet no freedom for the citizens since Fredrick saw that the octopus arms of slavery continued to stretch everywhere hence exposing the hollowness of the freedom values of America (Douglass, 2019). In talking about freedom, Fredrick claims that oppression makes a wise man mad.

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Slavery among Americans

Slavery among the Americans was rampant ad even when they thought they were giving them freedom; it was plunged in the lowest depths of dissipation. The slaveholders liked to see their slaves drink to their own accord and also adapt to various plans for them to drink. These plans included making bets on their slaves in terms of the ones that can drink more whiskey and not get drunk (Douglass, 2019).

This way, the present freedom for the Americans was such that when the slaves asked for it, the slaveholders cheated them with a dose of vicious dissipation that was labeled in the name of liberty. The Americans did not have an option but to succumb to the result of choosing between slavery life and liberty. The masters were good at deceiving the slaves to the belief that what they offered was freedom as they got back to the arms of slavery.

Fredrick sought to achieve freedom by escaping and becoming a prominent activist. He became a leader in the abolition movement. It was this movement that led to the end of the practice of slavery. Douglass's opinion was that that education would make him free from bondage, he said that knowledge was the pathway from slavery freedom (Douglass, 2019). It was reading the newspapers, political materials, and pamphlets that he was led by a ream of thought to condemn the slavery institution.

He later credited the Columbian orator that clarified his view of freedom and human rights. He then started teaching other slaves how to read by the use of the Bible. They would read the New Testament weekly. He was taken to work for a poor farmer who would whip him regularly that even the wounds had no time to heal.

He rebelled against the fighting, and the poor farmer did not come to beat him again. It was here that he added a story in his bibliography that said, "you have seen how a man was made a slave; you shall see how a slave was made a man" (Douglass, 2019). After his marriage, he moved to Bedford, where he started attending the abolitionist meeting. It is this movement that ended slavery.

Douglass claims that slavery dehumanizes both the slave and the slaveholder. Slaveholders only provided few privileges that were esteemed higher by the slaves that worked out-farms compared to those selected to do errands in great house farm. They were associated with greatness, yet it was not the case. It was dehumanizing to condition people to slavery and have particular notions about them that would not be ideal for human beings (Douglass, 2019). The slaveholders believed that a slave working in one of the out-farms and do errands in the Great Farm House would be more proud compared to a representative who just won the elections to a seat in the American congress.

The slaveholders regarded such pride in working in the Great House Farm as evidence of great confidence that was reposed in them by overseers. It was dehumanizing for these slaveholders even to think that the constant desire of the slaves to be out in the field and not under the lash of the driver was to be esteemed at high privilege, one that was worth living for. The dehumanizing effect of slavery on the affected slaves led them to choose options that seemed better to their playing part. They selected to work in the Great House farm because of the monthly allowance presented to them hence making them peculiarly enthusiastic.

The slaves had to succumb to the little that the slaveholders had to offer such that as they were on their way, they could make dense old woods, and sing wild songs for miles that revealed their highest joy at once and the most profound sadness of all times. The songs of the slaves represented the sorrows of their hearts because the activities that they were made to do for only a little or sometimes free was far beyond the ordinary (Douglass, 2019). It was also dehumanizing for slaves to think that their singing was evidence of contentment and happiness as the songs brought some emotions of joy.


In conclusion, Douglass' narrative supports the sentiment that a black man can escape from the south, but he can never escape from slavery. The slavery of the government was in the form of injustices and cruelties of the time, yet it was covered by celebrating the Independence Day that people claimed to make things better. In the real sense, it was difficult to escape from slavery if people did not know how to react to the government that kept oppressing them.

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