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Narrative of the life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, and New Jersey Noir - Books Review

4 pages
939 words
Carnegie Mellon University
Type of paper: 
Book review
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Americas neighborhoods remain highly segregated along racial and ethnic line concept as seen in both ''new jersey noir'' and the Frederick Douglass book

When I read the book written by Frederick Douglass, I realized that it was not only about his life but it also about how Americans neighborhood is highly segregated along racial and ethnic lines. The same concept I also read in the book of ''new jersey noir'' which explains how New Jersey is the city full of murderers. Frederick Douglass book talks about his slavery life and his life experience during slavery. In the contrary to the book of Frederick, the book of New Jersey talks about the life of a man who was born in New Jersey but grew in New York. These books are very interesting but both provide an account of how America segregate people a long racial and ethnic line.

All these books are amazing to read. Because I wanted to know how American is nationhood segregated by racial and ethnic lines, I had to read these two books which explains evils in slavery starting from the slavery rules to its consequences. I cannot believe the things I read from these books; it is full of mistreatment of slaves and discrimination of the highest order. From my reading, Frederick was born in slavery and his father was the slave master and therefore he is half white half black. He was denied the freedom to see and to receive maternal love from childhood to adulthood. I saw my mother a handful of times and when she passed away; his death did not strike me very much as others would like it to be. In slavery, the sense of hope and faith of slaves are taken by the master so that they can concentrate on the work of their master. They were denied the right to move and express themselves.

Fredrick Douglas was enslaved because he is partially while and that is a form of racism against color. He could not be allowed to live a free life despite being a son of the slave master. He had to undergo through the slavery process because he is Africa- American. This is contrary to the book of New Jersey noir'' where there is freedom for blacks and white despite the fact that they were not allowed to live in the same areas. I was born in Newark, New Jersey, and grew up in Summit, an upscale town in north Jersey. There was this tiny area of Summit where most of the black families lived. My parents and I lived in a duplex house on Williams Street. The freedom of movement and expression was also not restricted to people in New Jersey, They were allowed even to go to the shows and city which is different from the autobiography of Fredrick Douglas. He explained When I was growing up in New Jersey, my mom would regularly take my sister and me into the city to see shows. I have many fond memories of standing in the half-price ticket line in Times Square and going to matinees

I have never known that slavery was only meant for Africans but not for Native Americans. The Africans were subjected to forceful labor and torture. All these were done by the slave master who was a white and treated Africans slaves more harshly than others. According to Frederick Douglas, African slaves were separated from their families for life unlike America slaves. They were also subjected to harsh working conditions. Keeping them from their family and working them damn near to death. It therefore implies that African slavery was being treated different from other slaves. One of the most important things that I have never known is how the slave master examines slaves. People would be asking the manner in which slaves are being treated and the answer that must be given is positive if not a serious punishment is given to the slave. It does not matter whether the answer given is true or false. "How does your master treat you?"

Another important thing that stands out of this story is that Frederick has the desire to learn. The wife of an earlier slave master used to teach him but when he was caught, she was stopped harshly. She was told, "You can't teach a slave to read, an educated slave is a dangerous slave". This implies that Africans were not allowed to go to school or have any formal education. Africans slaves were barred from learning and this is a critical sign of racism. Based on my understanding everybody should read this book as it explains how Americans treat other people based on racial and ethnic lines. In the other book, there is freedom of education; children are not denied the opportunity to learn. In the New Jersey, people believe that children should be in school most of the time but not according to Fredrick who stayed in slavery from birth to adulthood. She said, School is where children spend most of their time, and it is where we lay the foundation for healthy habits.

In conclusion, racism and ethnicity are also portrayed in the autobiography of Douglas. The book also highlights how white slaves owners rape black slave women to receive a satisfaction of their sexual desires and also to increase the number of slaves under him. These unethical practices are only done to African women and other white slaves from coming from a different ethnic group. There is also the high hypocrisy of Christian slave master. They use religion to validate their disgusting handling of slaves.


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