Slavery In Paul Laurence Dunbar's They Wear The Mask

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In Paul Laurence Dunbar 's poem “We Wear The Mask” we are exposed to the turbulent times and the atrocities given to the African American people from the hands of the whites. They had grown so accustomed to the mistreatment and conditions of their world they began to cover up their misfortunes with mask of happiness and satisfaction. This method of dealing with there slavery is the major theme we see throughout Dunbar’s poem. Dunbar’s poem expresses the hidden pain and suffering that African American slaves had to deal with. The African American slaves hid all of their pain and frustration from their white owners. In Dunbar’s poem the first illustration we get of how the people in the poem wear masks is. “We wear the mask that grins and lies, …show more content…
Many people have faced hardship through their lives. Slavery is not just something African Americans have face, we had slaves in Babylon, Greece, Rome, and throughout the world(historyworld.net). Just alone in United States we had slaves from a plethora of ethnic backgrounds. In a more modern sense though I think each of us have worn a mask to hide our true feelings in a situation. Either out of fear of reprieve or because we lack the confidence to speak our true feelings. In “We Wear the Mask“ we see the struggle of a people that have hid behind mask to survive through all of the pain. Being behind the mask can bring comfort to both the wearer and the person who chooses to accept the mask as the reality of someone else 's life. But we should never wear a mask. Not only does it hide the truth from the world but it can very well be the thing that is holding us back from reaching our goals or even gaining our freedom. I think that is the big point Dunbar was trying to get across. Let us not hide behind our mask but let us speak the truth and gain

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