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Frederick Douglass tried to evoke a desire for Liberation amongst the African-American people in his writings and oratory To many people Douglass appeared to be the black Moses leading his people to freedom not only physically but mentally and getting there by non-violent means Douglass believed that if he could successfully show that blacks were in fact equal to whites he thought that in turn everyone would recognize this and put an end to slavery Frederick Douglass has emerged as the representative black male writer of his time period As is well known Douglass the son of a slave woman and a white slave master spent the first part of his life as a slave in Maryland escaping to New Bedford Massachusetts in 1838 Levine 3Fearing fugitive slave hunters Douglass sailed to the British Isles and when he returned in 1847 he established the North Star thus beginning a sixteen-year career as an editor and publisher of three different antislavery newspapers In the middle of this journalistic career he printed an expanded version of his autobiography My Bondage and My Freedom 1855 a text that articulated some of the key tenets of his newspapers temperance and the importance of pursuing black elevation in the United States As a slave himself Douglass in his person embodies the possibilities of regeneration In My Bondage and My Freedom Douglass signals his entry into revolutionary tradition And thus he presents himself in his autobiography as a national representative fighting not only for its moral and political principles but for the very civilization that served as a foundation for the development of those principles In this work Douglass implying that blacks by following Douglasss representative example can overcome what Douglass refers to as the ten thousand discouragements which best their existence in this country Holland 58 he nonetheless presents a disturbing picture of the ways in which intemperate whites by enslaving and degrading blacks have created a separate
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