The Atrocity Known As Slavery

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The Atrocity known as Slavery Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl is a narrative that describes a young girls trails and tribulations while being an involuntary member of the institution of slavery. Jacobs, like every other victim of the atrocity we call slavery, wishes those in north would do more to put a stop to this destructive practice. As Jacobs states, slavery is de-constructive to all who surround it. It tears apart families, not just families raised in slavery but the masters family as well. And why, why would the free men and women of the north remain silent while such a great atrocity is still in practice? Jacobs confronts her reader one on one in order to reemphasize her point. Harriet Jacobs, the author of Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, uses the family and sentiment to appeal to and challenge her 19th century white women reader in order to effectively gain their support in the movement for abolition. Support, what is it Jacobs wants when we say support? She is looking for northern women that will recognize that they have a duty to, and an obligation to put a stop to slavery in the south, the trading of slaves in the north, and the recapture of runaway slaves in the north. She not only wants them to recognize this fact but she wants them to act upon this fact. To take into their own hands the duty of putting a stop to the demoralizing, destructive way of life called slavery. This demoralizing, destructive way of life taints all who take part in it with the horrid stench of evil. This evil stench of slavery is found both on the involuntary members of slavery and, most of all, the voluntary proprietors of this barbaric ritual called slavery. O, what days and nights of fear and sorrow that man caused me! Reader, it is not to awaken sympathy for myself that I am telling you truthfully what I suffered in slavery. I do it to kindle a flame of compassion in your hearts for my sisters who are still in bondage, suffering as I once suffered. ( Jacobs, 393) As represented above, Jacobs deems it necessary to gain emotional support from her reader. By writing in a way that allows the reader to be drawn into acquiring a feeling sympathy for both her and, as she states, her sisters in bondage. Jacobs tries to kindle in her readers a flame of passion, a flame of passion that will be forever lit and slowly spread throughout the north. This flame that Jacobs wishes to enlighten in the north, in accordance to her wishes, will put an end to the demoralizing institution of slavery. I had entered the sixteenth year, and every day it became more apparent that my presence was intolerable to Mrs. Flint. Angry words frequently passed between her and her husband. (Jacobs, 395) Slavery, it ripped apart the families of slaves when their children would be sold to slave holders from another state and the poor mother would never see their children again. Jacobs knows that any mother would feel for another mother that had to give up her child with out her consent, and completely against her will. Jacobs knew this and used to appeal to her reader by relating with them through the use of family. Families that were torn apart because of slavery. Jacobs hopes that it will not to be mistaken that only slave families were affected. In order to prevent this misunderstanding she relates to her audience the story of how Mr. and Mrs. Flint are torn apart because of Jacobs supposed relationship between her and Mr. Flint. Not only were the slave families torn apart by slavery but the slave holders families we torn apart as well. In view of these things, why are ye silent, ye free men and women of the North? Why do your tongues falter in maintenance of the right? Would that I had more ability! But my heart is so full, and my pen is so week! There are noble men and women who plead for us, striving to help those who cannot help themselves. God bless them! God give them strength and courage to go on! God bless those, everywhere, who are laboring to advance the cause of humanity. (Jacobs, 394) In her essay Jacobs appeals to reader through the use families, she grabs them emotionally by stating how it is that she suffers, and she confronts her readers personally. By confronting their silence, and their inability to stand up for what is so obviou

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