Thesis statement harriet jacobs

a critical investigation of the concept of double consciousness…
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  • Incidents In The Life Of A Slave Girl English Literature Essay.

Children of slaveowners learned too early about violence and sex and, as they aged, they became indoctrinated into their parents' system. Even white people like Mr. Sands and Mr. Thorne , who did not practice outright violence, were callous and racist. Lies and hypocrisy were rampant. Christianity was diluted and perverted in the mouths of southern ministers and their congregants.

Overall, slavery was corrupting to everyone in its reaches. The value of motherhood is one of Jacobs's most salient themes. Harriet may not have wanted children for fear of them being caught in slavery's clutches, but her devotion to her children is overwhelmingly fierce. Every thing she does is for their sake -her running away from Dr.

Flint, her years of discomfort, pain and loneliness in the crawlspace, her treacherous escape to the north, her wage labor in New York. Although Harriet did not have the domestic life that was idealized during the Victorian era, she nonetheless exhibited the all-consuming and unequivocal love of a mother for her children that no doubt resonated with northern female readers.

Thesis Statements Harriet Jacobs and Mary Dyer

Motherhood in its uplifting, virtuous and loving ideal is also represented in Harriet's grandmother. Like her contemporary Frederick Douglass, Harriet exposes some of the same realities about religion in both the north and the south. She explains that religion was a way for slaveholders to keep their slaves in check - ministers delivered sermons about slaves obeying their masters - and to assuage their pricked consciences.

Religious whites in the south were often paragons of hypocrisy, thinking that paying tithes and attending church services meant that their flagrant violence, lust, and greed were negated. The practitioners of real Christianity were the slaves, who meekly and humbly submitted themselves to God's will and practiced the virtues of charity, love, and patience. While some northerners were better, such as the Rev. Durham and his wife, others were afflicted by the same hypocrisy. Harriet touted the English as the only other real Christians she met.

Incidents showcases the rich heritage of African history, tradition, and religion that fused with their American counterparts. This is most evident in the Christmas celebrations that the slaves partake in; they enjoy the western Christmas traditions but bring in the Johnkannaus tradition from its West African roots. They also sing spirituals, which, as historians of the period have thoroughly researched, use biblical themes and allusions but weave in themes of their own stories and sufferings that sometimes derived from their African past. From this, I gather that those individuals who resisted and fought for their freedom, acted in such way because they were physically and mentally exhausted from living such a life style.

Those who accepted being held as slaves acted in such way because they experienced great harm from what they had been exposed to. It was not only physical harm that they experienced, but emotional and physiological as well which led them to be afraid of doing anything and taking action in response. In order to fully comprehend the matter of slavery, several scenes from the narrative will be further analyzed. Specifically, I will be looking at scenes in which Douglass describes the knowledge he has as a slave, one of the countless scenes of violence and cruelty which he witnesses himself, and most significantly, a scene of resistance leading to self identity.

In addition to that, the CRT connects to the notion of slavery and will further allow me to focus on how more than one factor such as ethnicity, class, sex, and power all influenced the actions of several human beings, therefore creating certain relations between individuals. We learn that he was the son of an African American woman named Harriet Bailey and a white man, a slaveholder who he never knew. He was an African American born into a life of bondage, who did not know how to read or write. Reading more into the narrative and gaining more information on Douglass, we come across his personal feelings and thoughts.

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I do not remember to have ever met a slave who could tell of his birthday… A want of information concerning my own was a source of unhappiness to me even during childhood. The white children could tell their ages. I could not tell why I ought to be deprived of the same privilege.

I was not allowed to make any inquiries of my master concerning it First, the tone of the passage seems pessimistic. Douglass sounds heartbroken and in a state of confusion. He starts off by contrasting African Americans to white individuals. We get a clear understanding of how he sees and thinks of himself and other African American slaves in contrast to white individuals.

Second, with such a comparison we are able to see how confused he is with the fact of African Americans not being granted the same privileges as whites, and his desire to seek the answer to such question. He questions himself as to why his rights and civil liberties are taken away and why his slaveholder treats him differently from white children, especially when they are all human. He wonders why it is that most masters wish to keep their slaves ignorant, ignorant not only when it came to acquiring knowledge of their backgrounds, but also in knowing how to read and write.

This is significant for the reason that being able to read and write during this time was connected to power.

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  4. We can see this is true when examining another important and significant scene that appears within the narrative. I have known him to tie her up early in the morning, and whip her before breakfast; leave her, go to his store, return at dinner, and whip her again, cutting in the places already made raw with his cruel lash… He seemed desirous of getting the poor girl out of existence By reading this, we are able to see how slaveholders treated their slaves and what little power slaves held.

    We can see how African American slaves were treated with great cruelty. By treating their slaves with cruelty and violence, masters maintained power.

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    We can understand and see how these actions led the development of White supremacy and ethnic power and how it was produced during the years of slavery. Not only that, but with this we are now able to further recognize the issue of slavery. Along with that, we are also able to examine how ethnicity, sex, class, and power all relate to the ways in which African American slaves were treated by their slaveholders, and what little authority they held under their power.

    My eyeball seemed to have burst. Cruelty and violence was necessary for White masters to maintain their order because it made their slaves feel weak and stressed the great power they held in comparison to their African American Slaves. My resistance was so entirely unexpected, that Covey seemed taken all aback.

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    Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl

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