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Cody Bolt
AP Language
K. Shimmabukuro

                              Frederick Douglass Narrative

         In Frederick Douglass’ Narrative of his life, it is evident that his

experiences as a slave help him become the free speaker and writer that stood up

for slavery and spoke out against slavery that we know him as today. This can be

seen throughout the story very often in many different ways. One way that I

believe his experiences affected him was the way that he went from one slave

master to another several times, helping him see the world as a slave. Another

example is that he went from being illiterate to well writing and speaking, as a

slave he greatly appreciated education and I believe attaining this education helped

him form into the person he became. Another way that what he went through

changed him is the way that he saw people from a slaves point of view, being beat

and hated, to being taught and treated nicely by people in the same family not far

away from those who beat him, has to be a truly changing experience specifically

through how you see things. These experiences in Frederick Douglass life helped

shaped who he became greatly.

      One major thing that changed Douglass greatly is how he went from

plantation from plantation as a slave seeing everything and through a view that

most people will never know, this example is seen throughout the book when he

goes from Colonel Lloyd’s plantation to the mistress in Baltimore under the

ownership of Mr. Hugh’s family (Douglass Chapters V & VI). This was a great

change for him and was just the first changing of plantations that he mentions. He

goes from typical slave life of manual forced labor under horrible conditions to

working for a mistress he claims to be very nice and kind, then teaches him to read

and write, even when she wasn’t wanted to, an opportunity that most slaves did not

know and Douglass appreciated greatly. The great variety of what he saw was not

limited to changing plantations, but even when he is escaping to freedom and is

helped by Mr. Ruggles (Douglass Chapter 16), this is a rare experience for a slave

and to struggle and attain freedom to someone that has never known it has to be a

changing experience, and I believe this is seen after he is freed and he changes as a

person and takes on a sophisticated life, speaking against slavery and writing of his

first-hand accounts from someone who was a humble slave before that. His change

as a person is also seen when he settles his new life and is rejected by the black

community for what he adapted as a free man for example when Douglass was free

he married a black woman Anna Murray Douglass, but had a white mistress and

his later second wife, this and similar actions on behalf of Douglass was rejected

by the black community, Douglass who’s first goal as a free man was to help stop

slavery was now rejected by a fraction of the black community. However, most of

his change as a person was for the better, by becoming sophisticated and an

educated writer and speaker, specifically against slavery.

      Another thing that I believe shaped him into what he became is how he saw

things through the viewpoint of a slave. To read the book and say what he went to

through was bad is very easy but to witness and go through as he did is devastating,

having to bear the enormous amount of physical labor and abuse only to also

witness true inhumane acts on a daily basis is a truly dramatic experience and

Douglass is even noted saying that his experiences as a slave made him what he his

(World Encyclopedia: Frederick Douglass).

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