The blacks were into two groups-the ones from the North and others from the South. The black people from the North showed more commitment to self-improvement and ethical reforms, specifically related to the abolition of enslavement. The blacks who were free discovered that they could not uplift other blacks until all the blacks were free. Thus, it led to the beginning of black activism. Black Activism involved black leaders in leadership positions and the regular blacks with no leadership positions to unite and work towards a specific goal, which was the abolition of slavery. The fight against slavery was through dialogues, gatherings, annual conventions, and newspapers. Thus, through working together, the black community and its leaders formed networks that connected their communities and furthered their message of ethical reforms. The message targeted the state's moral integrity as a way to spread its fight against slavery.
The leaders fought for the significance of equality for blacks and women. Also, they engaged in political actions that advocated for the uplifting of free blacks and abolition causes. It led to the formation of the Black Convectional Movement. Through the efforts of Bishop Richard Allen and other black clergy members, the first meeting was set in Philadelphia's Mother Bethel Church to discuss primary issues in the black communities, including abolitionism. Through the conventions, matters that enhanced the betterment of black people, such as black education, better job prospects, and the promotion of black business, were discussed.
Additionally, the leaders stressed the moral virtue of farm life. They encouraged going to church and righteous living to ensure the reformation of black people socially and morally. Hence, making the community thrive as a unit. Later, as the black conventions continued, different people arose to address the matter of slavery. Henry Highland Garnet called openly for a slave rebellion while Fredrick Douglas advocated for a peaceful resolution. The conventions aided in strengthening black unity through a unified purpose. Gradually, there was the introduction of the black press having Samuel Cornish and John Russwurm as publishers of 'Freedom's Journal.' However, due to limited funds, the paper was short-lived. After that, between 1830-1860, more black newspapers arose, providing perspectives on contemporary occurrences, provided a platform for conversing about the fight for abolition and issues such as jobs, housing, and education. The most influential paper was the North Star that attacked all forms of slavery and advocated for universal emancipation, promotion of moral and intellectual improvement of the blacks, and hastened the day of freedom to the three million slaves.
The documents both separately and together show the unification of the blacks. They had strong bonds, which was because of their shared origins and experiences in America. These bonds they had were robust regardless of a person's location or status in life. The blacks were miserable because they got beaten, women got raped, and some got killed because of the harsh living conditions. They did not despair but organized themselves to come together and fight their oppressors. Also, these documents show how the blacks helped one another, for example, The Underground Railroad network that assisted runaway slaves to freedom. It showed of allies who were courageous during a difficult time.
Sarah Mapps Douglass's association with the enslaved was influenced by her skin color, gender, and status because she was a black woman talking to other black women. Thus, one cannot relate to a particular gender if they are not of the same gender. The majority of the women in Antebellum were illiterate and impoverished, although working. Sarah was a lecturer and political author and founded a high school for black school girls. Her class is a literate, and well-educated black woman enabled her to talk and inspire other black women. Also, being a black woman in a society where women got downgraded, other black women saw her courageous spirit, and this had a significant influence on the enslaved.
Henry Highland Garnet and Fredrick Douglass were black men who used rhetoric techniques to fight slavery. Fredrick Douglass's method is the most persuasive because I can feel his emotions; he is angry and tired and wants freedom for his fellow brothers and sisters who are oppressed by their masters. Fredrick's words relate to many blacks who fed up, Fredrick calls for a revolution of the enslaved. He uses the bible and daily experiences of the everyday life of a slave to remind them how unfair and cruel their oppressors are. Thus, after listening to Fredrick's speech, a person becomes more aggressive in fighting slavery. However, after Henry Garnet's address is sympathetic to the slaves. When a person listens to it, he or she becomes more depressed and can give up hope instead of mobilizing to fight the slaver
The portraits of Dred and Harriet Scot symbolized a type of resistance from slavery; also, escaping slavery by Underground Railroad was a way the slaves escaped captivity. Escaping by underground Railroad was not as effective as the resistance put by Dred and Harriet Scott because it was risky. If a person who had escaped got captured, he or she got punished to serve as an example to other slaves who thought of escaping; thus, this means ended in disaster at times while the portraits of Dred and Harriet Scott show a legitimate way to be free. After winning in court, this promoted other blacks to secure their freedom without the constant worry of being enslaved again.
Explicit racism of stereotypes such as "Jim Crow" and cultural forms such as blackface has had a substantial impact on American popular culture from the Antebellum era to the present day because, during the Jim Crow era, laws were segregating the whites and blacks. The blacks were seen as inferior and could not be treated equally as the whites. Currently, racism still exists when blacks are associated with criminal activities. Some of them are killed mistakenly by police officers because black people are stereotyped to be criminals than white people.
In summary, the blacks from the North had the freedom to express themselves than the blacks from the South. They used a lot of means to advocate for their freedom, not only for themselves but for all the blacks. Therefore, despite the brutality of their oppressors, the black people never gave up, they mobilized and encouraged each other to fight for their freedom.
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