The Narrative Life Of Frederick Douglass Essay

1346 Words Apr 1st, 2016 6 Pages
Back in the 1800s, one surprisingly common misconception about the institution of slavery was that it was a romantic establishment founded on goodness and happiness. White men entertained the beliefs that it was their duty to care for the inferior slave, and that this would make the aforementioned slave happier; however, this could not be farther from the truth. In Frederick Douglass 's book The Narrative Life of Frederick Douglass, an escaped slave debunks the mythology of slavery. Douglass achieves this by exposing the hypocrisy of slavery-supporting Christianity, disproving the theory of black inferiority, and dispelling the idea that blacks are happy as slaves. Many slaveholders justified their cruelty by referencing the Bible. For example, one of Douglass 's masters, Captain Auld, underwent a religious conversion whereupon he began to use his religion as an excuse to beat his slaves. He would "tie up a lame young woman, and whip her with a heavy cowskin" and "in justification of the bloody deed, he would quote this passage of Scripture: 'He that knoweth his master 's will, and doeth it not, shall be beaten with many stripes '" (48). Clearly, this Bible verse was taken and used out of context, and Douglass exposes this hypocrisy by bringing it to light in his Narrative. The particular Bible verse which Mr. Auld utilized refers to God as master, not to a white slaveholder; it is demonstrating that Christians who know the will of God and refuse to do it should be…

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