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Sample Discussion Essay About Slavery and Frederick Douglass' Heritage

Essay, APA, High School
1 pages, 1 sources

Even being almost two hundred years old, "Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave" by Frederick Douglass still remains a must-read for any student who needs to craft a slavery essay. Below you can read a slavery essay sample that emphasizes one of the lesser-explored aspects of the topic – the influence of the institution of slavery on slave owners. Check it out and get inspired to compose your own thought-provoking paper.

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Discussion on Slavery

"Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave" by Frederick Douglass provides a lot of insight into the institution of slavery and the relationship between slaves and slave-owners. One aspect of the story that I found completely new and interesting is the idea that slavery had a damaging effect on slave owners. Douglass presents that the power that slave owners held lead to detrimental consequences over their moral and psychological health. He also demonstrates that the institutions of slavery threatened the peace and unity of the families of slave owners. In his book, he indicates that "the influence of brandy upon him, and slavery upon her, had effected a disastrous change in their characteristics" (Douglass, 1992 pp. 43). In the statement, Douglass refers to Mrs. Lucretia, who, as a result of becoming a slave owner's wife, changed from being a kind and affectionate person into a resentful and mean individual. The idea that slavery was detrimental to slave owners is quite contrary to my previously held perception that slavery was beneficial to all slave owners and their family members. My perception was based on the fact that through slavery, slave owners had people to cater for their every whim.

The reading elicits a lot of anger and hatred towards slave owners. This stems from the fact that not only were slaves robbed of their freedom but also of their identity as human beings. The reading also elicits great feelings of hope and gratitude for those individuals who fought to abolish slavery. By comparing the conditions of blacks during Douglass's era and now, it is evident that we have made a lot of gains with regard to their pursuit of equality.


  1. Douglass, F., (1992). Narrative of the life of Frederick Douglass, an American slave. Random House, Incorporated.

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