Frederick douglass rhetorical devices essay

When writing about Thomas Auld, he explained that his master had experienced a religious conversion but did not change for the better; rather, he found greater sanction for his cruelty through religion. Covey was also a religious man, but readers of the autobiography learned about his deceit, treachery, and brutality.

At Freeland's farm Douglass remarked how pleased he was that the man pretended no religion; according to him, "religious slaveholders are the worst. I have ever found them the meanest and the basest, the most cruel and cowardly, of all others" Such slaveowners were capable of gross misdeeds and blasphemy but pretended that they were paragons of virtue. In the Appendix, Douglass clarified his views on Christianity. He explained that he was not irreligious, but that the Christianity of Christ was far different than the Christianity of the southern whites. They were above all hypocrites and traitors to the word of God.

Throughout the work it is clear that Douglass locates the true faith in the black community, where it was purer and unadulterated by racism and evil. What are the elements of traditional African religion and dialect in the autobiography? Although Christianity has a far larger presence in the autobiography than traditional African religion, it is nonetheless present in the work. It is present in the wild, raw, and emotional outpourings of song by the slaves in the field and forest.

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It is exemplified by Sandy Jenkins, the slave who counsels Douglass to carry a special root at his side so he will go unmolested by Covey. Jenkins tells him, "he had carried it for years; and since he had done so, he had never received a blow, and never expected to while he carried it. In the end, the root was more of a symbol than a literal object to ward off violence; it symbolized the power of African tradition and community in resisting the bonds of slavery.

African dialect is expressly ignored by Douglass in the writing of his work, but the weight of accumulated oral traditions and speech underlie the work. Many of the stories Douglass related from his younger days could only come from the stories told by slaves in their own voices.

From Courage to Freedom: Frederick Douglass's 1845 Autobiography

Thus, African religion and the dialect and stories of the slaves are present in the Narrative , albeit in a limited fashion. Douglass is a man who seems to possess nearly all strengths and no weaknesses. The former include humility, compassion, kindness, sympathy, intelligence, patience, fortitude, and wisdom.

He derived great pleasure in his work with others and often put them above himself. He was not aggressive; even in his "fight" with Covey he did not actually fight back but simply resisted Covey's attack and would not let him beat him. He was tireless in his devotion to abolition; he toured the North and gave speeches, wrote journal articles, and told his story time and time again. He gave a voice to those who were still enmeshed in the net of slavery. He was a brilliant writer and speaker; he utilized skillful rhetorical devices and impressed all who listened to him. He was assiduous and diligent, never giving up on things that were important to him: learning how to read and write, escaping from slavery, and helping his black brethren.

He was also selfless, devoting himself to the cause of women's suffrage in his later years. All in all, Frederick Douglass was one of the most remarkable Americans that ever lived.


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Douglass's autobiography reveals a multitude of ways in which African Americans suffered under the yoke of slavery. They did not know their own birthdays or much other information about their past. They rarely knew their family members or were torn from them without warning. They were frequently without enough food, clothing, or sleep. They were beaten mercilessly and cruelly, sometimes when they had committed no offense. Some women were raped and forced to bear the children of their master. Some were killed or maimed. They were forbidden from attaining any sort of education for fear that they would become unmanageable, while slaveholders maintained ignorance was also good for the slaves, who would be unhappy with knowledge.

Douglass's grandmother, who had cared for several generations of the Anthony family, was turned out into the forest to die alone. Slave Demby was killed by Mr. Gore for refusing to come out of the river to finish his beating. Slaves had no legal rights; therefore, there was no way to prosecute anyone who killed one of them. They had to conceal their true feelings and lie about their happiness in order not to be killed.


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This is considered a formative assessment. Sinners Reading response with sample. Sinners Reading response.

Rhetorical Analysis of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass

A student copy of the list is also attached. Print the list for note-taking. For practice exercise 2 just write the main idea sentence.

Passages from The Scarlet Letter for the Final. Please see attachment for discussion topics. The Scarlet Letter Discussion Questions. Bush and Obama. Then complete the attached Socratic Seminar written work. Due Thursday. Review the essay, looking for places where Wilson characterizes the critics of automobiles.

What terms or names does he give to these critics? Wilson cites many examples of why it would be impractical to abolish the automobile. Can you think of some counterexamples? Does the essay have a thesis you could state in one sentence?

Summary Of ' The World We Live '

If so, state it. Where does he cite statistics? Where does he rely on personal experience? Socratic Seminar AP Unit 4.

Frederick Douglass Rhetorical Analysis Essay

Due: Thursday , June 3 Complete the Socratic Seminar Questions yesterday's homework and print out the last three pages pages 6, 7, 8 of the Socratic Seminar Packet attached. Take nots as you read. Enemies of Progress. Due: Friday , May 28 Click on the link below.

How to Write Literary Analysis

Read and take notes on the article. Answer the Reading Response question in your notebook. Look carefully at the illustrations by Tadeusz Majewski that accompany this essay. Determine what the illustrations add to Rifkin's argument, what they might distract from, or what they might emphasize, downplay, and so on. Write a letter of response to Rifkin.