Analysis Of Frederick Douglass And Machiavelli

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In the beginning centuries of the United States slavery was a very prominent part of the economy, especially in the southern states who depended on slavery to help the productiveness of their crops. Today it is easy to look back and see that what our ancestors did was wrong, but back then that was just the way things were. Frederick Douglass was a man who was born into a world where he would never truly see the justice that he knew he, and countless others deserved. Douglass was a slave, and from a young age he realized that part of his life would probably never change. He caught his first glimpse of hope when his owner’s wife began to teach him to read. Though she eventually realized her mistake, it was too late. After learning to read Douglass …show more content…
Machiavelli believed that rulers should do whatever they needed to do to stay in power, even lie to their people. “And so, if a prince wants to maintain his reputation for generosity among men, it is necessary for him not to neglect any possible means of lavish display” (Machiavelli Para. 9). Machiavelli knew that it was very important for rulers to uphold an appearance to stay in power. Slave holders would agree with this because they would do anything to make sure that they had power over their slaves. This meant physically abusing them and taking away all of their hope of every having control in their own lives. Machiavelli understood that it is better for a leader to be feared that it is for him to be loved, and slaveholders definitely lived by this philosophy. “Machiavelli recognized the value of manipulating public opinion as an important force for ruling principalities during the Renaissance” (Gillis). In a way slaveholders had to manipulate public opinion. They had to defeat the will of the slaves that they owned so that they could rule over them. One way they did this was by not educating them so that the only world that they ever knew even existed was the one that they lived in where they had no choice in their life. This is where slavery got its power, and Frederick Douglass was one of the few slaves who was fortunate enough to realize

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