Was Harriet Jacobs Ever Free?

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Was Harriet Jacobs really ever free? To determine that you will need to know the definition of freedom. According to Oxford Dictionary freedom is described as this: “Freedom- noun: 1 The power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants.” From this definition, Jacobs was ultimately free once Mrs. Bruce purchased her not for her to do the work of a slave, but for her to be a free citizen that could potentially do all that a white woman does and as she says in the chapter “Free at Last” being a citizen is a big deal because that means you have the opportunity to actively participating in society. As long as slavery existed, Jacobs would never be free. As an American citizen in today's world you are free, especially compared to other countries, …show more content…
The second, freedom for, is a revolution. The third, just freedom, is rebellion. It is present-oriented. The first is political, the second is poetic, the third is mystic, religious.” Freedom from is when you aren't free from your past, it is always holding down and you can't manage to look forward or even be completely present in the moment. Freedom for is when you want freedom for the future, this can be dangerous because life is lived in the present and in the model of freedom for you are focused on the future. Then plain freedom is being able to behave in the way you want to at that very moment not letting the past or future hinder you from what you to be. Using these examples and explanations is anyone actually free? Jacobs is not free from her past because she is always looking back at what she endures and how she is constantly avoiding having her daughter experience the same. Jacobs also does not exemplify freedom for because she is always thinking about her future and what's going to happen to her, her children, her grandmother, Dr. Flint, Mrs. Bruce and many others. She is always worried about what's going to happen to people. If anything Jacobs is most plainly free, especially towards the end of the book where she says “In order to protect my children, it was necessary that I should own myself. I called myself free (174).” even though she was not yet free, she had to act that way so people didn't become suspicious of her. Jacobs was willing to run away and willing to take the punishment if she was found, but she does not care what happens to her as long as her children are safe. Jacobs was going to do what she needed to do in the moment to make the best situation for her and her children such as seen on page 189 when Ellen would come and visit her, Ellen would be sent with a request from her owners to

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