How To Write Learning To Read And Write Frederick Douglass

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Frederick Douglass (born in 1818) spent his childhood and most of his early adulthood as an African American slave in Maryland. Later in his life, he escaped to freedom in New York, and became a prominent leader/spokesperson of the abolitionist movement. Given his firsthand experience with slavery, Douglass provided an account of his earlier life in his narrative autobiography The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass: An American Slave, through which he not only detailed the horrors of his life as a slave but also described the evolution of his decision to escape from the oppressive institution. In one particular essay in his narrative, “Learning to Read and Write”, Douglass recounts that his ability to read enabled him to concretely understand his oppression under slavery as well it greatly intensified his urge for freedom from servitude.
Before Douglass learned to read or write, he considered himself largely (though not totally) ignorant to his awful condition. Whenever Frederick reflected upon the injustice of slavery, he never could process these thoughts passed vague and formless inklings; thus, they died before they reached substantial clarity. Eventually, Douglass’ mistress (the wife of his master), taught him the alphabet. Due to
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Malcolm, like Douglass, determined to learn to read as a means to deepen his understanding of himself and his emotions. In a similar way, Malcolm’s newfound ability to read and think coherently angered and depressed him as he realized the societal injustices done to him and the African American community as a whole. As Douglass defied his oppression by escaping and becoming a leader of the Abolition movement, Malcom openly defied his oppressors by debating segregation and racism. In both men, the ability to read and to write pushed them to seek justice and true freedom in their flawed

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