The Narrative Of The Life Of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave

728 Words Oct 16th, 2015 3 Pages
Slavery is an evil that corrodes the slave 's life as well as the slaveholder 's mind and behavior. As demonstrated in the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, the personality of the most pure masters and mistresses can have a negative 180 degree turn after experiencing slavery. Frederick Douglass argues this by presenting the examples of Sophia Auld (a white mistress) and Thomas Auld (a non-born slaver owner) who were influenced by slavery to become dishonest and immoral.
The evil of slavery affected both men and women slaveholders. Mrs. Auld underwent on a transformation of corruption when she gained the possession of slaves. Douglass describes this transformation in Chapter 7: "Under its influence, the tender heart became stone, and the lamblike disposition gave way to one of tiger-like fierceness” (Douglass, p. 49). At the beginning of Frederick 's arrival to Mrs. Auld 's house, she is unaffected by the evil that represents the act of owning a slave. At his moment, slaves are people just like her and the rest of the white population. Without the presence of slavery, a slave is not more or less than any other person. Her kindness makes Douglass compare her to a lamb, which is an innocent and gentle animal (Douglass, p. 49). To Douglass she 's the most considerate person he 's ever met. She even tries to teach him how to read, but she 's stopped by her husband (Douglass, p. 48). The influence of her husband and having total power over another…

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