Resistance To African Americans Analysis

Words: 1827
Pages: 8

The texts taken together describe the development of African American history from the colonial era to the American Civil War. They reveal how the status of African Americans changed to one of complete submission and that their lower position was codified within the law. However they also reveal how they were able to make a difference and help secure their own freedom. Although at first glance several of the texts have little in common, they have common themes which include resistance and creolization.
The texts are significant in that they show how African Americans were able to adapt to life in America. How they were able to make the most of the cheap food that was available to them and attempt to negotiate a place for themselves and their
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This is shown in a variety of ways. There are examples of open resistance. The most drastic example of resistance for the enslaved was to fight back. This is mentioned in several of the texts. Harriet Jacobs mentions the Nat Turner rebellion. Additionally the essay From Creole to African” recognizes that numerous slaves escaped to Spanish Florida and helped defend “against incursions by English raiders.” A less drastic means of resistance was to escape to the North and to provide assistance to other enslaved attempting to do the same. This is shown in Gateway to Freedom which states that “between 1,000 and 5,000” enslaved escaped every year and that both “slaves and free blacks offered hiding places and in other ways provided them with assistance.” Though it could be argued that their actions didn’t weaken the institution of slavery they helped to prove that the master narrative was false in that the enslaved were not content with their status. However, the book doesn’t focus solely on resistance by African Americans, but also acknowledges the resistance on the part of whites in the North. This is shown by the fact that “both defenders and opponents of the Fugitive Slave Law launched rival fund raising campaigns.” In addition, while the essay “Who Freed the Slaves?” argues that the enslaved resisted slavery and the master narrative “by escaping from their masters” the author also argues that Abraham Lincoln …show more content…
The main focus of the essay “From Creole to African” is creolization both before and after the colonial era and also how the status of the Creoles themselves changed overtime. The metalanguage of race reveals the stark differences in status between those of different races. Without the assimilation between different races caused by creolization this might not have been the case. Hog and Hominy focuses on the development of Soul Food. While there are some who argue that it was created solely by African Americans without any outside influence the author instead “[argues] that soul food is distinctly African American but was influenced by Europeans.” Accordingly Soul food today can be seen as a direct result of a long process of creolization that began before the colonial era and that has continued long after the Africans were brought to North America. Music by Stephen Foster can also be seen as a direct result of creolization. Songs written by him were a combination of both European and African cultures in order to create something unique that could be considered American. That the theme of creolization is in multiple texts which on the surface seem to have little in common indicates that it would be nearly impossible to separate it from Black American