Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl Essay

Submitted By Azepeda97
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Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl

The novel Incidents in the life of a Slave Girl by Harriet Jacobs was very compelling, and inspiring. While reading, there were a few striking themes from the novel that stuck out. The main themes from the book was Great Determination, Religion, and Unfairness. Linda (the protagonist) was often troubled by the coldness of her master Dr.Flint (the antagonist). Though Linda did triumph in the end she was guided only through God, which made religion a huge part of the life. These occurrences in Linda’s life caused her to determine from a young age that she never wanted to to owned as a slave. In the beginning of the novel Linda was set on trying to find a way out of slavery. She didn’t know how she was going to achieve this goal, but with that intention in the back of her mind, she didn’t give up. For example, “I resolved to obey orders so far as duty required;I determined to make my stay as short as possible.” (Jacobs, 73) Throughout the book Linda is constantly reminded by herself of her goal because when she would think of freedom, she knew it was attainable.Another example Linda reminds us that not only her mindset was determined but her physical body was “ I don't know what kept life within me. Again and again, I thought I should die before long;but I saw the leave of another autumn whirl through the air,and felt the touch of another winter.” (Jacobs, 101) Since Linda was very determined throughout the book, that had ultimately lead to her freedom. On to the next point, Linda also had a strong belief in God, and religion. When Linda passed by a house that reminded her of her father she said “I seemed to hear my father’s voice come from it, bidding me not to tarry till I reached freedom or the grave. I rushed on with renovated hopes. My trust in God had strengthened me by that prayer among the graves” (Jacobs, 770 not only does this show some of Linda’s belief in God but also another example of her determination renewed. Furthermore, Linda had talked about how her grandmother was a very loyal christian . an example “I remember how he had defrauded my grandmother of the hard earnings she had loaned;how he tried to cheat her out of freedom that her mistress had promised her, and how he had persecuted her children; and I thought to myself that she was a better Christian than I was, if she could entirely forgive him.” (Jacobs,159) linda’s grandmother had also forgave Linda when she had gotten impregnated by a man whom she was not married to, proving how forgiving she was. One the other hand Linda had also gotten angered by the church, for instance “There I sat, guiltless of crime,yet not daring to worship God in any of the churches. I heard the bells ringing for afternoon service,and, with contemptuous sarcasm, I said, ‘Will the preachers take for their text, ‘Proclaim liberty to the captive, and the opening of prison doors to them that are bound’? or will they preach from the text ‘Do unto others as ye would they should do unto you’?” Linda would have been more than willing to go to church but what was being preached infuriated her enough to not worship God at church. The last, and certainly most important theme of the book was the inequalities between black and white. One of the first few major wrongdoings was Dr.Flints way of not welcoming Lindas firstborn child Benjamin. “He was not unwilling that he should bear his name; but he had no legal claim to it;and if I had bestowed it upon him, my master would have regarded it as a new crime, a new…