Essay on slavery in america

Submitted By studentlearner34
Words: 1371
Pages: 6

Slavery complicated family relationships in many ways, whether it was between parents and children or husbands and wives, the concept of family was negatively affected as a whole. Washington DC was created and based upon the foundations of liberty and freedom, the same foundations that our nation lives by on a daily basis. However, it’s ironic that the same place that is supposed to stand for liberty and freedom is the same place where slavery and the slave trade had always been legal. Washington DC was also the place where a woman by the name of Eliza helplessly watched as her son Randall was won by a planter from Baton Rouge. She begged and pleaded for the planter to buy her and her daughter as well, and if he did, she promised to be the most faithful slave. The slave trader threatened her with a hundred lashes and the outcome remained the same.

Slavery complicated relationships with parents and children, because children had no one to turn too, because parents couldn’t help them. All parents could do was pray and advise their children to do the best that they could do in their work. When parents attempted and tried to take up for their children, they faced the same consequences, whether it was beatings, flogging, or humiliation. Parents suffering the same consequences as their children, has to make the children feel helpless, and defensless. Reason being parents are always suppose to be there in order to protect and provide for their children.

The relationships between wives and husbands was also complicated as well. An example of this can be made evident through the story of Josiah Henson, whos father was brutally executed because he struck a white man while trying to protect his wife. After he was executed his wife along with their three children were all auctioned off to different locations, where again the mother begged and pleaded for the opportunity to keep just one child. Resulting in her being kicked and pushed to the side as if she didn’t exist.

Violence played a major role in the institutuion of slavery. Violence was put into place with the purpose to instill order. Whether a slave was beat, flogged, jhumiliated, or executed, it was to set an example so that the other slaves would not follow in their footsteps (such as trying to escape or not finishing a job) and continue to obey their owners and unjust laws. Violence was also put into place in order to show slaves that they were nothing more than just property and as humans they were worthless. Some slave owners resorted to violence for pure enjoyment. Instruments of torture were ordinarally used but if a planter or master didn’t have one of those instruments, he would simply use a chair, a broom, tongs, shovels, shears, knife handle, heavy heel of a slipper, or even a bunch of keys. Lewis Clark described one instrument of torute that was so brutal, that it was worth informing us about. This instrument of torture was that of an Oak club, which was a foot and a half in length and an inch and a half square. With this instrument slaves would be beat upon their feet and their hands until they blistered. Lewis Clark believed she was hated by Ms. Banton (daughter of the slave master) because she was light skinned and had some of ms. Bantons fathers blood coursing through her veins. She also exclaims that woman or males of mixed descent are treated the worst because of the hatred that flows through the mistresses veins.

4.Though some slave experiences were different, I believe slaves as a whole were unable to escape or resist the feeling of oppression. There were many factors that played a role in slaves being able to cope with oppression such as family (to a certain extent) and religion; however, being able to totally resist oppression I don’t believe happened. In these narratives the concept of family wasn’t even enough to steer clear of oppression. Families were often broken apart and separated not only for business practices but also for the pure