Stop Slavery Down The Throat Of A Free Soiler Essay

781 Words Jan 25th, 2016 4 Pages
The political cartoon titled “Forcing Slavery Down the Throat of a Free Soiler” surfaces during the tumultuous build-up to the American Civil War. In the wake of the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which ultimately granted popular sovereignty – the ability of the people to consent to its authoritative bodies – over the issue of slavery, slavery sympathizers and abolitionists combatted each other to gain advantages. The cartoonist makes effective use of graphic imagery, labels, and language to demonstrate the true purpose of the cartoon; the Democratic Party impinges on the free will of the people through malicious actions designed to promote pro-slavery sentiment among the settlers of newly added territories to the United States.
The cartoonist relies heavily upon graphic imagery to convey to the viewers the general sense of violence associated with slavery in the United States. At the center of the cartoon lays a larger-than-life figure being pinned down and mouth forced open. Four individuals – high ranking members of the Democratic Party – restrain the figure and shove a black man down his throat. The central image of the cartoon depicts the true nature and role of the Democratic Party in relation to the settlers of new territories. As a result of forceful actions, the settlers lose all sense of free will; more specifically, the settlers are incapable of deciding for themselves how they stand on the issue of slavery because outside sources are influencing the situation. The…

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