Essay on William Wells Brown And Henry David Thoreau

1185 Words Dec 2nd, 2015 5 Pages
William Wells Brown and Henry David Thoreau both wanted to escape in similar but different ways. They both wanted their own sense of freedom and they took great measures to achieve their dreams. This may appear to be contradictory, but in this paper I will explain how even though they are similar, they are also different. I will also be analyzing these works. These observations are withdrawn from, and can be referenced to Brown’s The Narrative of the Life and Escape of William Wells Brown and Thoreau’s “Resistance to Civil Government.” To begin, Brown talks about himself in the third-person in his narrative. This is significant because he wants to distance himself from his story. This might have been his method of helping us understand the facts and it might have also been an attempt to keep the reader from being biased against the story. Thoreau makes his story more like a journal of sorts. Thoreau speaks in first-person because he wants us to understand his point of view of why he does what he does. Brown’s reason for escape is because of slavery. His desire is to escape to Canada, which is significant because Canada did not have any slavery or fugitive-slave laws. In contrast, Thoreau’s reason of escape was not because of slavery, but more of a method of finding deeper meaning in life and escaping from the government interference. Thoreau wanted to live a very minimalistic lifestyle, so he decided to move out to the forest and live on a small plot of Ralph Waldo…

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