Free Essay: Religion and Violence in Solomon Northup's 12 Years a Slave

Published: 2019-12-20
Free Essay: Religion and Violence in Solomon Northup's 12 Years a Slave
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Violence Literature Religion Slavery
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 915 words
8 min read

Slavery forms a particular case of the general freedom winning in such a society. In 19 centuries, slavery was known by many as essential to human progress. This paper aim at discussing the slavery life as explained Solomon Northrups Twelve years a slave. He helped his father with farming chores. In 1841 he was captured and sold to slave dealers. Twelve years a slave published in 1853 by David Wilson is a slave narrative. The first two chapters relate the Northup family history. He is sold to a notorious based slave trader James who brutally whips him. The second half of Northups narrative describes his life in cotton and sugar plantation where he endured a lot of tough situations. Northups writes a letter home where Carpenter Bass agrees to mail it back. The final chapter elaborates the legal proceedings that followed and it ends with Solomons reunion his family. This paper seeks to establish the contributions of the religion and the violence to the slaves and the slave dealers.

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Role of the religion in Solomon Northup's Twelve Years a Slave

The religion played an important part in the oppression in the US southern states as attested by Solomon Northups Twelve Years a Slave. The bible is used by the oppressors or the slave dealers directly as a tool of oppression. This is contrary to the expectation. After the preacher has read the bible to the slaves, he waves his Bible in the despondent slaves' appearances and says, "And that is the scripture!" (Northup pp.88)Within a "Christian" culture the abuse of such sections gave a religious defense to Epp's ruthless misuse of his laborers.

This story depicts how the Christian faith of the slaves themselves is a wellspring of solidarity, solace, and inward resolve. In one of the most famous scenes, Northrup is envisioned singing together the Negro Spiritual 'Move Jordan Roll' along with others after the demise of their slave. In the Twelve Years, a Slave story depicts a well disturbing and epic story of the way one man survives the sort of brutality which God detests. The religion is most importance in the movement or the fight for the justice (Northup pp.89)

Violence and its ramifications

The slave dealers mistreated the slaves captives by doing all sorts of injustices to ensure that they remain submissive to their demands. Solomon faced a lot and injustices when he was a slave has his master beat him mercilessly and threatened to kill him. Solomon Northup gets himself a detainee in the slave pen of James H. Burch, a ruthless slave merchant in Washington, D.C. At the point when Solomon challenges his bondage and states his freedoms and rights, Burch reacts by beating him into accommodation and threatening to murder him if he ever says his ideal rights and liberties again. Finally, Solomon is permitted to join the fellow slaves being held by Burch, and he finds exactly how sad his circumstance is (Northup pp.83). He was sold to the Ford where he receives a very warm reception and a new name, but after Ford runs under financial constraints, he decided to sell Solomon to Tibeats a cruel carpenter where he got mistreated.

Tibeats becomes the enemy of Platt (Solomon), and he always threatens to kill him and to tease him. When Tibeats got enraged by Patt, he opts to whip him, but it turns contrary when Platt beats him instead. This makes Tibeats attempt severally to murder Patt, but William Ford intervenes. Solomon Northup mainly concerns with the length of time he stayed under the under the brutality of Edwin Epps after being sold by Tibeats. He is focusing on how his cruel master treated him on the two different plantations (Northup pp.93). Epps is described as the cruelest master indeed. He regularly whips his slaves and his companion.

Solomon describes his experience in Epps place in detail, portraying the incidence of deprivation among the slave captives, humiliation, and the general abuse. The slaves were suffering under his inhuman nature. Patsy who was a slave girl in Epps house was regularly raped by Epps and also whipping her mercilessly so that his wife could not sense anything. Patsey was not given any money or soap to wash her clothes hence making her move to her friend to get the assistance from them at the nearby the plantation. Epps wife could not permit her to use the soaps in the house, and she got enraged when go out to seek for help from her friends (Northup pp.90).

When Patsy comes back from her friends, Epps wife gets infuriated thinking that she has gone to have the sexual relationship with her friends. At this time a slave is misused. Mr. Epps ordered Patt to whip a naked Patsey who scream helplessly with no help. The time went on, and Solomon almost loses trust. At that point, he encounters a carpenter named Bass, who was an abolitionist from Canada who is paid to deal with a building Epps projects. Bass learns of Solomon's story and chooses to offer assistance. He sends letters to Solomon's companions in the North, requesting that they come and safeguard the slave from his imprisonment (Northup pp. 88). The slaves offered themselves to fight with the autocratic leaders like What Solomon does to Tibeats.

Work cited

Northup, Solomon, Sue L Eakin and David Wilson Twelve years a slave.Ed Joseph Logsdon Penguin books, 2013 pp. 84-96

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