Chapters 1—4[ edit ] Douglass begins by explaining that he does not know the date of his birth he later chose February 14,and that his mother died when he was 7 years old.
Table of Contents Frederick Douglass In the Narrative, Douglass acts as both the narrator and the protagonist, and he appears quite different in these two roles. Douglass progresses from uneducated, oppressed slave to worldly and articulate political commentator.
One instance of this dramatization occurs when Douglass mocks how impressed he was as a young man to encounter the city of Annapolis—a city that now seems small to him by the standards of Northern industrial cities. As the narrator, Douglass presents himself as a reasoned, rational figure.
His tone is dry and he does not exaggerate. He is capable of seeing both sides of an issue, even the issue of slavery. Though he makes no excuses for slave owners, he does make an effort to present a realistic—if critical—account of how and why slavery operates. His humane vision allows him to separate slaveowning individuals from the institution that corrupts them.
Moreover, Douglass as the narrator presents himself as capable of intricate and deep feeling. He allows his narrative to linger over the inexpressible emotions he and others have suffered, and he sometimes dramatizes his own tears.
Douglass as the protagonist of the Narrative is sometimes a strong character and at other times a sidelined presence. Similarly, at times Douglass exists merely as a witness to scenes featuring other characters. Generally, Douglass the protagonist becomes a stronger presence as the Narrative proceeds.
Finally, Douglass reestablishes a sense of self and justice through his fight with Covey. Douglass thus emerges as a figure formed negatively by slavery and cruelty, and positively by literacy education and a controlled but aggressive insistence on rights. Though often isolated and alienated, Douglass remains largely optimistic about his fate and maintains a strong spiritual sense.
Finally, Douglass has a strong desire to help others, expressed in part through his commitment to improving the lives of his fellow slaves, as we see in the Sabbath school he runs while under the ownership of William Freeland.An American slave by Frederick Douglass, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass Introduction The Narrative of the Life of Fredrick Douglass can be referred to as a memoir and writing about the abolitionist movement of the life of a former slave, Fredrick Douglass.
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass that was is a memoir by Frederick Douglass that was first published in Frederick Douglass In the Narrative, Douglass acts as both the narrator and the protagonist, and he appears quite different in these two roles.
The wide gulf between Douglass’s two personas is, in fact, the point of the Narrative: Douglass progresses from uneducated, oppressed slave to worldly and articulate political commentator. Analysis and Summary of “Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass” Posted by Nicole Smith, Dec 6, Non-Fiction Comments Closed Print Although throughout the Narrative, Frederick Douglass has a tendency to skip around often and does not always follow a completely chronological ordering, the work begins with his childhood.
In his narrative, Frederick Douglass relates biblical and Christian knowledge to his feelings about the inherent wrong of slavery and considers the way these children will grow up with “those fathers most frequently their own masters" (24).
Frederick Douglass' memoir "Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass" has long been praised not only for its revelation of the immorality of slavery, but for its illustration of Douglass' superior skill with rhetoric, the art of persuasion.