Douglass Review - 1 Kyle Aiton HI 251 Frederick Douglass...

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1 Kyle Aiton November 26, 2007 HI 251 Frederick Douglass The first edition of Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, Written by Himself , was published in May 1845 by the Anti-Slavery Office. It was written by Frederick Douglass and edited by David W. Blight. Douglass recalls events from his life chronologically, from his early years as a slave in the south, to his escape to the north, and his later years as an abolitionist. He presents the everyday struggles of slaves along with his experience as a slave and his road to freedom. Frederick Douglas was born in Talbot County, Maryland in 1818. He was not aware of his own age in his early years, a common trait among slaves. Education for slaves was looked at as a negative thing to slaveholders. His master was rumored to be his father. He was separated from his mother at an early age, and saw her scarcely during his remaining childhood on the Lloyd’s plantation. He spoke about the slave’s poor, unsanitary living quarters, their many unjustifiable whippings, and their lack of rights and education, and their lack of food and provisions for the cold. He also spoke of the many slave songs that were sang on the plantation and the meaning behind their words. He contributes these songs to his first glimpse of the “dehumanizing character of slavery” (51). Due to his young age while on Colonel Lloyd’s plantation, Douglass did not work in the fields and therefore had a good deal of leisure time. He was seldom whipped, most of his suffering coming from hunger and cold. When Douglass was finally moved from
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2 Colonel Lloyd’s plantation, he recalled leaving with a sense of joy, for he did not view his living quarters as his real home. Douglass was between the ages of 7 and 8 when he
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