Fredrick Douglas


Write a paragraph of 7+ sentences.

1.  One beautiful passage is on p. 1037.  Douglass contemplated suicide but says he “was prevented by a combination of hope and fear.”  He would overlook Chesapeake Bay and pour out his heart to God.  I love what he expresses on in this passage.  This is not one speech he gave on one day but a summary of what he felt as he watched those ships in the bay on Sunday afternoons.  Notice that he ends with “There is a better day coming.”

Douglass begins the passage by declaring that “I would pour out my soul’s complaint, in my rude way, with an apostrophe to the moving multitude of ships . . . .”  An apostrophe is a figure of speech in which the speaker detaches himself from reality to address something or someone.  He follows the passage with “Thus I used to think, and thus I used to speak to myself; goaded almost to madness at one moment, and at the next reconciling myself to my wretched lot.”  

Express any thoughts you may have about this passage, specifically about the inner conflict that Douglass describes.

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