Slave Narratives: Impact On American Literature And Culture

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Slave Narratives had a tremendous impact on U.S. literature and culture. The jaw-dropping incidents and cruelty portrayed by slave masters within these works were able to garner significant amounts of sympathy from readers. Slave Narratives helped persuade some people to support the abolitionist movement, which was crucial in the fight to end slavery. Independent from the historical and societal effects, these works gave slaves a voice and created a whole new genre of literature. Slave Narratives are important to America because of the history behind them, their influence on American literature, and the impact they had on society. The real-life events and stories given by slaves who went through these experiences first hand provide a valuable insight into the …show more content…
Slave Narratives are unique because their are specific rules, purposes, and motifs that go along with them. According to Allyson C. Criner and Steven E. Nash, Slave Narratives are “firsthand accounts of African Americans who experienced slavery” (“Slave Narratives”). This makes Slave Narratives distinct in that only a limited number of people could make one, as it could only be considered a true Slave Narrative if the narrator had personally gone through slavery. Slave Narratives brought controversial, persuasive writing to popularity in America. According to William L. Andrews, “Slave narratives comprise one of the most influential traditions in American literature, shaping the form and themes of some of the most celebrated and controversial writing, both in fiction and in autobiography, in the history of the United States” (“Slave Narrative”). Slave Narratives had an immense influence on American literature in both the past and present. To conclude, the tendentious nature and specific rules of Slave Narratives were unique, yet also powerful and a prime example of American

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