What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?

In: Historical Events

Submitted By silverwolf71190
Words 827
Pages 4
Why is Christianity so central to Douglass’ argument? Why does he make numerous references to the Bible?

Christianity is a religion based on values of love, respect, forgiveness, and understanding, and the Bible is the book from which those values are taught. Frederick Douglass, born into slavery, was a prominent figure in the fight to abolish slavery, and a great speech giver. In his speech, “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” Douglass centrals his argument around Christianity to bring to light the sham under which his audience resides, and makes numerous references to the Bible to support his claim.

It has been, and still is to this day, said that the United States of America was built upon a foundation of Judeo-Christian values. In what feels to be increasingly heated words, Douglass speaks on behalf of the American slave, presenting to his audience the travesty they have made of the Christian faith. He explains that “American Christianity” is “to [the American slave], mere bombast, fraud, deception, impiety, and hypocrisy – a this veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages” (Douglass 485). Through the use of harsh words, Douglass is hoping they will penetrate the souls of those listening, resulting in sorrow and guilt for allowing such a travesty to arise from a religion based on love and respect. Further into his speech, Douglass emphasizes on how the lives of his audience are a sham, and he feels he is helping them to do right by making them first feel guilt, and then understand why that is. Using references from the Bible, a book supposedly understood by those listening, Douglass puts into perspective their true identities. According to the Bible, his audiences are “scribes, Pharasees, hypocrites, who pay tithe of mint, anise, and cumin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith” (Douglass…...

Similar Documents

The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass an American Slave

...The Narrative of the life of Frederick Douglass An American Slave Written by himself Throughout its autobiography, Douglass narrates his life as a slave, from his birth, in 1818, in a plantation of Maryland, to his evasion in 1838, which allowed him to take refuge in the North of the United States. He quickly became there a figure eminent and respected by the abolitionist movement to which he dedicated then all his energies. At first, we shall focus on the inhuman conditions from which Douglass suffered. Then we shall redraw the road he took towards freedom. We shall finally analyze how Douglass criticizes various institutions. The author makes us go right to the heart of the absolute horror of the institution of slavery. Throughout his personal experience, Frederick Douglass counts us the story of thousands of other slaves who were subjected to the same conditions under the influence of the white slaveholders in the southern plantations. Thus, this account illustrates how these human beings were condemned to a terrible tragedy that was inherent to their color. Being black justified their entrance to a process of dehumanization. From his youngest age, Douglass suffered from identity issue. He expressed his disorientation due to not knowing his father or his date of birth[1]. He was also deprived from experiencing the protection and the love that a family should bring. Indeed, he was separated from his mother at the age of one and in spite of his blood......

Words: 1690 - Pages: 7

Slave

...its political policies, social ideology, and economic institutions. Slavery took place in each Roman’s live, being the master or the slave. At that time, slavery made citizens act in a cruel and inhumane manner to other human beings just because they own them. It began when masters started setting laws for the master/slave relationship. Which of course did not go in slaves favour? Masters use to abuse, murder, torture, treatment inhumane way, prostitution and many more. Slaves had no choice but to accept all these inhumane behaviors or they can always free themselves by paying the master the amount the master purchased them. This was impossible because slaves did not earn money for the tasks they had to perform. In my essay, I will be discussing two opposing views of the relationship that took place between the master and the slave. It will present if slaves really deserved to be treated in this kind of inhumane manner, or maybe they should have been treated as human beings not necessarily as equal to normal citizens. 1. In the source given below, it describes the inhumane treatment slaves suffered from their masters. Vadius pollio, an equestrian and a good friend of the emperor made sure that slaves would face the most inhumane death a person could ever face. Pollio would dash the slave in a pond full of lamprey eels, in which case the slave would be torn into piece within minutes. Shelton, J. (1998). As the romans did, a sourcebook in roman social history. (2nd ed.......

Words: 690 - Pages: 3

Slaves

... Slave Narratives 1. Why were the slave narratives recorded? The slave narratives are a unique historical record and were recorded to better recognise the travesties slaves faced and detailed the lives of African Americans who were born into bondage. 2. What are some of the baises that may be present in the slave narratives? There is only one visible bias in the slave narratives and that is that only one point of view is presented in regards to the notion of slavery. 3. Why are the slave narratives so important? The slave narratives are important as they allow historians to gain insight into slavery and the social/political viewpoints of both European and African American inhabitants. 4. Outline the daily lives of slaves as depicted in the narratives? The slaves worked on plantations from sunrise to sundown growing cotton and tobacco. Young slave children served as entertainment for white children, and overall slaves were used to serve the daily needs and wants of white settlers. 5. What was the importance of cotton to the plantation owners and what role did slavery play in this? Cotton was a large, prosperous farming ideal that was the majority export from southern plantation owners. Approximately 90% of income was produced from cotton. The slaves farmed the cotton and were in charge of picking and growing it. 6. What were some of the punishments and why were they inflicted? Jennie, a slave, ate a biscuit from a room in her owners house and was caught. She was then......

Words: 625 - Pages: 3

Fourth July

...Gerry Gunawan Public Speaking 4th of July Speech 7/11/2012 The fourth of July speech that I choose is Obama Speech. The speech was held in White House building. He was accompanied by Michelle Obama the first lady. They hosted a barbeque party in the white house lawn. While everybody gather in the lawn for the party, He is giving a speech for this Fourth of July in 2012. The topic of his speech is about military “Represent what is best in America”. He thanks military heroes in the Fourth of July celebration. He said that “You serve under our proud flag.  You and your families sacrifice more than most of us can ever know all in defense of those God-given rights that were first put to paper 236 years ago: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,”. He is then welcome everybody there for the barbeque and off courses the fireworks. The content of the speech is light and doesn’t contain anything that hard to understand. Simply thanking and naming all the people who become heroes to America and then he invites all the people to enjoy the food and the fireworks. He delivers the speech very loud and clear. He has a very good eye contact, he is reading a note but he keeps maintaining the eye contact to all the people who is coming there. He also doesn’t seem nervous or anxious at all. He maintains the speed of his speech very well and he doesn’t lose his composure when people are giving him applause. The situation there seems really happy and casual. I can see Obama wearing a...

Words: 411 - Pages: 2

Fredrick Douglass 4th of July Speech

...Traditional fouth of July speeches focused on the achivements and legacy of the American reveloution, however Fredrick Douglass’s speech sheds light on the rights white Americans enjoy and the oppression of slaves. He wanted the people to know that he was asked to speak and not that he was delighted to do so. His speech was meant to show people that slaves had no reason to celebrate. Slaves weren’t free and the independence that the rest of the country was elated about and celebrating didn’t apply to them. Although the audience that he was speaking in front of was a group of abolitionist, and was on his side, he wanted them to step up more for what they believed in. I believe that Fredrick Douglass hoped to shed light on a historical celebration, while expressing the reasons why slaves shouldn’t or aren’t in jubilee. Fredrick Douglass was successful in getting his point across, which basically is the Fourth of July was a bad reminder of cruelty that Americans attempt to hide with celebration. He’s asking for change, what has been done cant be erased, and he hopes that the cruelty and injustice that is taking place now wont carry into the future of this country. Douglass’s tone in this speech was of humility and gratitude, he was humbled to the Rochester Ladies Anti-slavery Society for choosing him to speak for their independence ceremony. He also was sarcastic, and had many rhetorical questions in his dialect. He used “you” “me” “us” and “them” to stress the fact......

Words: 284 - Pages: 2

The Fourth of July

...The fourth of July I remember when I came to America it was the first time in my life that I felt different from the people around me and I felt out of place in my surroundings. I believe that’s how Audre Lorde felt grown up as African American in the 1930s and 1940s. At this time in American history racism against African Americans was very common. In Adre Lordes story “ The fourth of July” she expresses her frustration and anger towards American society and also her parents for ignoring obvious racism and not properly expresses what was happing to her family and why. She seems to be irony to expresses this anger she feels toward American society. Adre Lordes story is a about her family's trip to Washington DC, during the summer after her 8th grade graduation audre lorde thought that Washington DC as a capital would be different from how it was. She was not expecting to find racism in the capital of a country that’s stands for liberty, freedom and equality. But still her and her family felt discriminate. In her story she writes, “The waitress was white, and the counter was white, and the ice cream I never ate in Washington D.C., that summer I left childhood was white, and the white heat and white pavement and the white stone monuments of my first Washington summer made me sick to my stomach for the whole rest of that trip and it wasn’t much of a graduation present after all” she uses the word “white” a lot in her story to describe......

Words: 458 - Pages: 2

Slaves

...A Slave’s Misery In this story Douglas’s purpose was to show the despair of all the slaves by recounting his memories when he was a little boy. The author begins the story with a description of his childhood of his early years as a slave. The author use begins it like this because he wanted to show us that a slaves’ hardship begins when they are young. Another reason why the author starts it like this because he is going to tell the story of his life when he was a little boy. (Douglass. l. 4) “By far the larger part of the slaves know as little of their ages as horses known theirs” to show us that the slaves were treated like an item and not as a human being. This also shows that his master was very strict and wanted his slaves ignorant. Douglass recounts details in his early life as a slave to induce sympathy from his reader. In the story Frederic Douglass talks about his parents for two apparent reasons. The first reason revolves around his mom. The reason why he talked about his mom is to show us that his mom was very caring and that she was someone that soothes and calms Douglas but due to slavery he did not really get to enjoy her presence. (Douglass l. 53) “I received the tidings of her death with much the same emotions I should have probably felt at the death of the stranger.” The fact that Douglass was not allowed to be present during her illness, death and burial is the reason why he said this quote. This also displays that Douglass has never felt motherly love...

Words: 534 - Pages: 3

The American Revolution and “What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?”

...Revolution and “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” Thomas Jefferson first used the phrase, “all men are created equal,” in the Declaration of Independence which is something that has been criticized as an immortal declaration. It is also a popular phrase that is a popular theory prediction of the United States Revolutionary period with great continuing importance. The American Revolution would help lead to the national holiday of July 4th and the birth of a new nation that would be celebrated as a day that marked America’s independence. In the nineteenth century, many of the American communities celebrated Independence Day with a ceremonial reading of the Declaration of Independence, followed by a speech dedicated to the celebration of independence and the heritage of the American Revolution of its Founding Fathers. On July 5th, 1952, Frederick Douglass spoke to his black community about the meaning of the Fourth of July. His speech was not to praise the celebration of July 4th, but it was to inform the audience that freedom has not been applied to everyone like how America said it would be. There are connections between our Revolutionary Founder book and Frederick Douglass’ speech that show the struggle of African Americans fighting for freedom before and ongoing after the American Revolution. I chose Frederick Douglass’s document “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?”, where he touches on the history of African Americans fighting for freedom and what the......

Words: 1068 - Pages: 5

What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July

...Douglass’ famous speech, he’s embarrassed to be asked to speak about our nation’s Independence Day, the Fourth of July. At one point he questions, “Fellow-citizens, pardon me, allow me to ask, why am I called upon to speak here today?” (pg.503). Douglass requests his audience to be patient and respectful toward him, for he has endured as a former slave. Through much of the first half of the speech, Douglass describes how our fathers must have felt in 1776. Most were still loyal to Great Britain. The public didn’t know which side to take and if taking one, would seal their fate. Douglass is clearly speaking to a crowd of white and black citizens, by constantly reiterating that he respects the men that brought our great nation together. However, during the speech, he suggests that disastrous times are ahead if things don’t change. The United States are still a young nation that may not be forever. There’s a hidden anger during Fredrick Douglass’ speech of America. After quoting a passage from the Declaration of Independence, his view on the Fourth of July is obvious. “Resolved, That these united colonies are, and of right, ought to be free and Independent States” (pg.500). He continues to say to the people, you were granted freedom and you reap the fruits of their success. “The Fourth of July is the first great fact in your nation’s history” Douglass says (pg. 500). To a slave, there’s no independence and there’s no country they could call their own. Although he believes......

Words: 444 - Pages: 2

4th of July

...Born on the Fourth of July (film) Born of the Fourth of July is an American drama war film based on the best-selling autobiography of the Vietnamese War veteran Ron Kovic. In the film, the actor Tom Cruise plays Ron Kovic. The film is actually directed by Oliver Stone who is, in fact, a Vietnamese War veteran. The film is about a young boy, Ron, who is full of enthusiasm and wants to go to Vietnam and fight for his country. He is very patriotic at first, but he is later tormented by physically and mentally wounds, which he got from the war, from which he suffers. Ron is developing throughout the film and you could easily say that the first phase is before the war, the second is during the war and the third is after the war. The film is not only trying to tell the viewer the personal development of Ron Kovic but also the director, Oliver Stone, wanted to show what is was like to be a part of the Vietnam War, seen from a war veteran´s point of view. Ron Kovic is born of the 4th of July - the day The Declaration of Independence was signed in 1776, which to the Americans is a symbol of freedom and nationalism. The film is opening with a scene that shows Ron Kovic, whom is celebrating his 13th birthday and New York celebrating Independence Day with a parade of World War 2 veteran. His family is very caught up by the patriotic theme of the day, and they are very proud to have a son who is born on the 4th of July. The film takes place in the 60´s where the young boys are told...

Words: 970 - Pages: 4

Fourth of July

...Meaning of the Fourth of July The Fourth of July is a national holiday celebrating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776, which declared the United States free from England’s control. This day gives Americans the great opportunity to renew our dedication to the principles of liberty and equality. It speaks to all who strive for liberty and seek to show the principles of self-government. Unfortunately, not everyone living in America felt the same American pride on the Fourth of July. The freedmen and slaves living in America has different views about the United States and the documents securing freedom and equality. One man, Frederick Douglass, spoke out for the slaves and freedmen in his speech “The Meaning of Fourth of July for the Negro”. In 1852, Frederick Douglass was invited to speak about what the Fourth of July means for America’s black population. In his speech, Douglass questions what the Fourth of July means to a slave. His answer: the Fourth of July is, “a day that reveals to him … the gross injustice and cruelty to which he is the constant victim”. Douglass continues by saying, “your celebration [is] a shame, a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages”. Douglass states there is no other nation on Earth guilty of the bloody and crimes made by Americans during this time. Douglass makes it known that equality is not within America. The high independence of American citizens shows a great gap between slaves and......

Words: 528 - Pages: 3

The Fourth of July

...In “The Fourth of July”, Audre Lorde express her anger toward American society. Her angry was caused by discrimination and racism in our Nation. I agree with Lorde, during this period in our nation’s history racism was treated differently. Lorde describes the excitement she felt before her family trip, her reaction to the first encounter of racism while on the trip, and how her parents did or did not deal with racism. To begin, I feel that Lorde was excited to receive a trip to Washington D.C. as a graduation gift. Lorde believed the trip was a gift of accomplishment for graduating the eighth grade, which turned out to be a train wreck. She didn’t understand what people meant by “it’s time to grow up” until her trip that summer in 1947. Her eyes were opened to what her parents had been hiding from her during childhood. The trip that was to celebrate her achievements and the beginning of her journey into adulthood turned into an abrupt experience that would change her aspect of our nation. Conclusion: Lorde provided a personal experience on how cruel our racial society could be. …….. I grew up in a mostly white neighborhood with only a few African Americans that went to my school, so racism was not an issue in my childhood. From the history books, movies, and articles like “The Fourth of July”, it helps me understand what it must have been like. With the Civil Rights Laws in place today, people are supposed to be treated equal, but unfortunately , that does not always......

Words: 264 - Pages: 2

Declaration of Sentiments and Fourth of July for the Negro

...Joseph Vaccaro Professor Leslie Lindenauer HIS 148 20 October, 2011 Independence: For All or For Some The Declaration of Sentiments written by Elizabeth Cody Stanton, and The Meaning of July Fourth for the Negro by Frederick Douglas are two documents that portray their own explanation of freedom and independence. These two activists portray their justification in their own way, one heavily towards women the other towards the African American people. Freedom should be for all not for some, it should be for blacks, whites, men, and women. Elizabeth Cody Stanton follows the framework of the Declaration of Independence very closely when writing the Declaration of Sentiments. She uses the wording to show connections between women and the rest of the American people during this time. The Declaration of Independence states, “We hold this truth to be self evident that all men are created equal. However, Stanton throughout her declaration re-phrases this in a way that all men and women are created equal. Throughout the Declaration of Sentiments, Stanton mimics the style of the Declaration of Independence, in this case it directs its anger towards the King of England “He has obstructed the Administration of Justice” and “He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly.” She instead uses the word “He” not to refer to the king but to refer to the controlling males in society during this time period. Along with those issues Stanton also has concerns with the freedom...

Words: 674 - Pages: 3

Fourth of July

...Sydni Craig 000108021 Professor Bailey T and TR April 6, 2016 The Fourth of July In the story, the Fourth of July, by Audre Lorde the little girl is telling the story of a graduation present of going to Washington D.C. As a graduation present from graduating from the eighth and older sister from graduating from high school. And it says that she received the best graduation present but I agree to disagree with the people, who would say she received the best graduation present. I agree with going to Washington D.C. was the best graduation gift the eighth grader could receive. I agree because at a young age especially since she will be going to high school, it is great for her to see everything at firsthand of what the world was like during that time. It gives her an idea of how the world looks like in 1947, were as she is always being hidden from it and not telling what has been going on. But I can also disagree because her parents should explain to her in detail of what was going on, and I also disagree with that being a graduation present and it being the best present she will ever receive. She went through the process of seeing how and what life really is at her age and how it will be for the next couple of years. The world at the year if 1947 was full of racism and discrimination in which it is bad in some states, but also horrible in others. The young girl in the story witnesses her family and not be treated right at firsthand. The thing that was messed up about......

Words: 1268 - Pages: 6

What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?

...In Frederick Douglass’ “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” Douglass gives a well written empathetic speech on the ignored truth and irony about the celebration of Independence Day. His descriptive and impactful retellings of the inhumane practices used in the slave trade gave listeners a revelation that slaves were more than items and laborers but were people just like them. His description of the slaves’ trials and tribulations as families, mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters gave a relative point for listeners to second guess the trusted idea that slavery was only a business practice akin to selling cattle. He finally made slaves look like people in the eyes of the American citizen Douglass’ history as a former slave further pushes his point of how terrible slavery can be. Being a part of it firsthand gives a sense of surrealism to the situation since Douglass is not only speaking of slavery from things he’s only seen but situations he has experienced. If he was a man that had never gone through slavery I doubt his words would have made as much as an impact. Being an ex-slave Douglass can give the ugly but necessary truth of what slavery does to people. Douglass’ overall tone of the essay, to me, does seem angry. He puts down the unjust celebration of freedom by the American citizens all the while recalling the atrocities of slavery that exist alongside it. It’s impossible for to see his speech come off as anything but angry. To summarize, Frederick Douglass’......

Words: 567 - Pages: 3

honeywell wireless sensor | Antikspielzeug | The Abduction of Jen..