Reading Response FDouglass- Daniel Perez

Part 1:

As a slave, Douglass one out of few, knows how to read and comprehend english quite better than the average African-American at the time. After completing his forced hard labor he would always read. To the point of even risking his own safety sometimes, rushing to do all work just to flip the next page, Douglass is very unscrupulous when it comes to his knowledge. One word always had his mind in a puzzle; he just couldn’t figure out the definition. He searches through the dictionary and all he receives is the general meaning “The act of abolishing”, but he wants to know what was to be abolished. Knowing he would have to face punishments if he was to ask another what it was to face abolishment, he chooses another route. “After a patient waiting, I got one of our city papers, containing an account of the number of petitions from the North, praying for the abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia, and of the slave trade between the states”(Page 3, Line 27).

Douglass now after a long and hard search knew what it was to be abolished. Though, the mistress found such a thing threatening. A slave reading the newspaper shows that they are capable of doing the same things anyone else can (much stronger than what they may be perceived as). “Nothing seemed to make her more angry than to see me with a newspaper. She seemed to think here lay the danger”(Page 1, Line 25). It shows that no matter the skin color, height, or weight… it doesn’t affect the power of the mind and we are all as equal as another.

Part 2:

As you continue to read the thoughts of Douglass you may get lost in his words and feel as if it was only him who was going through such experiences, but what if he was speaking for many others also? “I consoled myself with the hope that I should one day find a good chance. Meanwhile, I would learn to write”(Page 4, Line 3). His mind seeks escape, so he turns to knowledge and even the thoughts of risking himself, his freedom just to keep himself sane. Douglass isn’t the only one who feels this way. “White men have been known to encourage slaves to escape, and then, to get the reward, catch them and return them to their masters?”(Page 3, Paragraph 2). Now by reading both of these quotes… Do you really think Frederick Douglass was speaking just for himself or for the majority of the people who share the same skin complexion as he does?

1 thought on “Reading Response FDouglass- Daniel Perez”

  1. Daniel: Your answers are not clearly addressing my question. In fact I can’t tell which question you are answering. If you are doing Q4, then you should explain the PROCESS he used to learn the meaning of “abolition.” What was the first thing he did, what next? Then explain why the mistress felt threatened by his reading a newspaper. Your answers must be more clear.

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