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It was Fredrick Douglass who said that If there is no struggle there is no progress It is fitting that he uttered these words before the birth of Annie Elizabeth Bessie Delany and her sister Miss Sadie Delany as if to foreshadow the struggles that were yet to come Although he faced an insurmountable amount of discrimination in his lifetime from being born into slavery and fighting for emancipation and suffrage for African Americans he knew the struggle for equality would be a long and hard battle In the play Having Our Say The Delaney Sisters First 100 Years the audience is captivated by the life stories of Doctor Bessie Delany and Miss Sadie Delany Having lived over a century the wealth of knowledge the sisters have to share draws in the audience in such a dynamic and powerful way that it forces the audience to listen to history coming alive by the stories they share Miss Sadie Delany is the one who introduces the compelling and proud 101-year-old character Doctor Bessie by saying when Bessie says shes going to do something she does it Mann 1 Throughout the play the audience is shown the struggles that the older generation of African American women had to endure but through the character of Doctor Bessie the audience sees the strong will that Doctor Bessie possess to overcome the obstacles of discrimination that is set before her It is through Doctor Bessies humiliation she feels during the time of the Jim Crow laws struggles to obtain an education and the racism she faces within her own community that we see her rise above racial discrimination and achieve success in her life It is one thing to read about the injustices that were the Jim Crow laws another to see photos or watch footage during that time period But to have the opportunity to listen to the first hand encounter of anindividual who livedthroughit is a
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