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Analysing Texts on Slavery

3 pages
587 words
Middlebury College
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Slavery is the main theme in the texts, digging into a fraught History and Voices from the past speak to the present. However, the two texts also make mention of the Stamp Act which the British had used to exert their dominance over American colonies. In the texts, the repeal of the Stamp Act is briefly mentioned, and the impression that one gets is that most of the people were happy to have had the stamp act repealed. The texts try to explain the history of slavery in the United States in the context of the lives of slaves at Princeton University. From the text voices from the past speak to the present it is evident that slaves and the African American community at large are treated as second-class citizens. The text is evidenced by the fact that the first African American student to graduate at Princeton graduated in 1947 despite the fact that during the era of slavery many slaves had worked for the institution (Schuessler, Jennifer b)

The text voices from the past speak to the present also shows us that ultimately what matters is how an individual sees themselves not how the society views you. Betsey Stockton was an enslaved woman who decided that her status as a slave would not deter her from getting an education. She teaches us that we should not complain about our current status in life instead we should try to do something about it so that we can better ourselves in life. The take away we can get from this is that we ought to strive to be self-reliant as opposed always to complain that the current situation does not favor us and seek help from other individuals.

Betsey Stockton also serves as a perfect example since once she can educate herself, she does not keep this knowledge to herself instead she goes out of her and travels to Hawaii to educate other slaves. Betsey teaches us that we should always strive to benefit the society that we are living in since once we are gone, it is the legacy that we leave behind that will leave a lasting impact. The text voices from the past also show inhumane treatment of slaves in the sense that they are advertised for sale in newspapers thus showing that instead of being seen as humans by their fellow countrymen they viewed as commodities.

The text, Digging into fraught history shows that as a society we have come a long way from the era of slavery up to the era of being a progressive society. The text is evidenced by the fact a group of Princeton students referred to as the Black Justice League from Princeton demanded that the name of Woodrow Wilson should be deleted from some records in Princeton. Despite having served as Princeton president Woodrow Wilson came under fire from the Black Justice League since he had racist ideas which the current crop of students at Princeton are opposed to (Schuessler, Jennifer a).

Moreover, the texts show that irrespective of our racial difference we are all humans. Therefore, we should not segregate each other by race instead we should embrace our diversity since diversity is what makes life interesting. The takeaway we can get from the texts is that we should embrace each other irrespective of our differences since we are all unique.


Works Cited

Schuessler, Jennifer (a). "Princeton Digs Deep Into Its Fraught Racial History." 2017,.

Schuessler, Jennifer (b). "Putting The Ghosts Of Princeton's Racial Past Onstage." 2017,.


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