The Columbian Orator: Book Analysis

Improved Essays
Obtaining knowledge is key path for slaves to awake from their ignorance. Douglass carried his hatred of slavery and the nostalgia of the temporary love in his childhood began the pursuit of freedom and freedom of thinking. When he was living with Hugh and Sophia Auld in Baltimore, Douglass learned how to read and speak English under Auld’s wife’s teaching. This experience of learning set the turning point to Douglass’s life and he realized the important of seeking education to slaves. This awaken emerged when Douglass overheard Mr. Auld forbidden his wife educate Douglass because educating slaves in Maryland not only violate the law, but also dangerous, “Learning would spoil the best nigger in the world” “if you teach that nigger how to read…it …show more content…
The book “The Columbian Orator” brought him attention to understand the rights of human being and help him to acknowledge the inequalities of being a slave (chp 7). Knowledge helped him recognize himself as men instead of as a slave and articulate the injustice of slavery, but he was unable to find a way escaping from slavery. In chapter 10, when he was working in Covery’s plantation, he lost his hope and desire to learn and escape under covery’s brutal treatment. Douglass’s successfully fought back to Covery’s brutal beatings, and terrified his master which set as the climax of the story. This showed slaves should take action and fight what they believed is injustice, which is more important and effective than the people who had knowledge but afraid to speak out the injustice of slavery. This also showed Douglass as slave his awareness of manhood, which help he’s able to reclaim his strong desire to learn and break the slavery. After that, he learned he took up the responsibility of encourage free slaves learn to read and write and escape. He eventually escaped to northern by the support of other slaves. Although Douglass had a clear understanding that the path to freedom was not easy, his fully awaked self- consciousness from the experience as slave, have the clear purpose

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    He saw literacy as that key that would unlock slaves from the chains of ignorance when it comes to understanding that they were not made to be working in fields for long hours and being whipped as if they were animals, but that they were meant to be living their lives freely and happily in lands that were made foreign to them by the barbarous acts of their slaveholders. As a final point, Douglass’ strong ethos helped to justify his belief in literacy playing as a serum that helps individuals blinded by the lies of slavery become sightful of the heart-crushing…

    • 890 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    When Douglass 's master from Baltimore caught his wife teaching him how to read he explained the dangers of teaching a slave. The slave will come to resent his situation, which will result in his discontent, thus eventually becoming unmanageable. After overhearing the Auld 's conversation, Douglass internalizes Auld 's words and values them as his ticket to freedom. Douglass narrates, "I now understood what had been to me a most perplexing difficulty‐‐to wit, the white manʹs power to enslave the black man. It was a grand achievement, and I prized it highly.…

    • 1049 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    This showed an action of fighting what people believed is injustice is more important and effective than the people who had knowledge but afraid to speak out the injustice of slavery. This also showed Douglass as slave his awareness of manhood, which help he’s able to reclaim his strong desire to learn and break the slavery. After that, he learned he took up the responsibility of encourage free slaves learn to read and write and escape. He eventually escaped to northern by the support of other slaves. Although Douglass had a clear understanding that the path to freedom was not easy, his fully awaked self- consciousness from the experience as slave, have the clear purpose in his action and the increase of knowledge about abolitionism guide to the path of expressing his voice of freedom.…

    • 1246 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Frederick Douglass Duality

    • 1247 Words
    • 5 Pages

    “[B]ut while they relieved me of one difficulty, they brought on another even more painful than the one of which I was relieved”. His identity, before his ability to read, was a slave. He served his master and if he did not, he would be punished. He is now consciously aware of his state, “relieved” of one understanding, but now must face the facts that slavery was wrong. As he read the documents that promoted slavery, he was able to express how wrong it was.…

    • 1247 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    In fact, history proves education to be one of the keys to the end of slavery. Douglass mentions early in his narrative how important the desire of masters to keep their slaves ignorant was. Douglass writes, “the larger part of the slaves know as little of their ages as horses know of theirs” (1). Later on he writes, “want of information concerning my own was a source of unhappiness to me” (1), to present how illiterate slaves were and how miserable life was. Eventually Douglass was bought by a new set of masters, Mr. and Mrs. Auld, where Mrs. Auld taught and introduced him to literacy.…

    • 1892 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Hugh Auld had a significant impact on his former slave by denying Douglass the right to an education which opened up a strong desire within the aforementioned author to seek out ways to learn how to read and thus started Douglass’ journey of self-discovery and respect that ultimately led to his determination to be a free man. However, one must remember that throughout the narrative, Auld began to serve another purpose which Douglass wanted to push to his Caucasian audience in the northern and southern states. His inclusion in the narrative was not just because he owned Douglass but because Auld’s character served as the perfect example of the inconsistency of slavery. Had he not been…

    • 1050 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    This passage addresses this theme by first offering a vivid depiction of the beating and then explaining how it made Douglass feel and the long-term effect that it had on Frederick Douglass. Douglass writes that that watching the slave master beat his aunt struck him with an awful force and that he was not able to write down the full extent of what happened. Some might argue that Douglass’ situation might be unique and that all slavery was not as violent as what Douglass witnessed. Or someone could argue that Douglass exaggerated his description of slavery to engage the reader of his book more. Another point could be that slave owners did not beat their slaves to instill fear but just to punish one slave.…

    • 920 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    After he had passed, Douglass became one of the foremost figures of the abolitionist movement. Douglass' narrative exploits the advantages made in order to abolish slavery, by not only to evince the public on the malevolent, degrading adversity slave drivers loaded on their slaves, but to civilize the slaves that had been negatively affected regarding to the Southern institution of slavery. To embellish every horrific detail, to aid in his fight to abolish slavery, was what helped his objective. This influential narrative parallels Douglass maturing in life through all the struggles to uncover the power and dedication to demand the freedom for himself and all. This document was more than mere propaganda to solely contend in opposition to slavery, it was a testimony of a political purpose to provide abstract queries, with freedom as the subject, to personally define which side of the debate was just.…

    • 1200 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    There would be nothing to contain them in their present situation, a sentiment echoed by Douglass as he writes that his education “had given me an inch and no precaution could prevent me from taking the ell” (81). In order for owners to maintain slavery as a viable institution, it was important for many of them to make educating a slave something that not only not allowed, but also punishable. In other words, by the fierce opposition to education, the owners were implicitly admitting that through education lay some kind of freedom which was incompatible with slavery. The role of education is primarily thought to be a positive force for development, but Douglass presents it as a negative force throughout his memoir. He may have depicted education as containing negative aspects in slavery in order…

    • 1028 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Although, the facts are not pleasant to read about, but it makes me understand this period of life when certain group of races consider themselves as superior to others. It dehumanizes people. Therefore, it’s important to be inform about our history, which from this book I learned about the unequal rights of slaves not having education at all, slaves degrading each other by bragging who has the better master, and the illegal acts done by poor white children. Finally, my beliefs on how Douglass got away from being destroy of his moral and life though the early motivation of being free. In conclusion, Douglass teaches us to value our freedom, to never give in to something immoral and to respect the lives of all…

    • 750 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays