Review Of Solomon Northup's Twelve Years A Slave

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In 1619, the first slaves were brought from Africa to Jamestown. Over the next hundred years the institution of slavery was established and with it an ideology. Several states passed legislation that created the idea that blacks property and inferior to whites (The Records of the Virginia Company of London 234). In 1776, a document was signed that said that all men were created equal but somehow left out African Americans. The seeds of the sectional conflict were laid with the creation of the Northwest Ordinance in 1787. These soon to be five states would be called free states making the rest of the nation slave states (“Northwest Ordinance 1787” 1). This act drew lines in the sand that separated that part of the country from the south morally …show more content…
An example of an abolitionist book inspired by Uncle Tom’s Cabin was Twelve Years a Slave. The author, Solomon Northup, actually dedicated the book to Harriet Beecher Stowe. In Twelve Years a Slave, Solomon Northup was a free black man living in upstate New York who was captured and sent to the south to work as a slave (Northup 3). When this book was published it was extremely controversial throughout the South. When discussing racism in his novel Northup said, “What difference is there in the color of the soul” (Northup 24). After it was published in 1853, it sold 30,000 copies and became a bestseller in the United States. This book exposed the inconsistencies of the laws established as result of sectionalism. For example, in regards to the Fugitive Slave Law, a person from a slave state could go to a free state and capture an African American person. Then they could collect their reward even if the person was never a slave. Free states could no longer enforce their own laws. Twelve Years a Slave was not only an abolitionist novel but it exposed the hypocrisy resulting from slavery. He said, “I could not comprehend the justice of that law, or that religion, which upholds or recognizes the principle of slavery;” (Northup 53). From the eyes of a black man the laws, beliefs, and ideology of the United States did not make any sense to …show more content…
In 1885 he published the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. In this novel he tells the story of a young boy named Huckleberry Finn and a slave named Jim. It seems like an innocent story about free and simple nature of boyhood. Twain also revealed that his original intention of his novel was a sequel to his successful novel, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. If one examines the story carefully it reveals that it is a satire of life in the American South. Huckleberry Finn exposes the blatant racism and ignorance that encapsulates all ages, races, and socioeconomic conditions (Twain 12). Mark Twain used his point of view, a Northerner, to expose the disparities in ideologies in the United States caused by

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