Frederick Douglass Paper Essay
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For this year’s I.P., I picked Frederick Douglass to be my topic. The reason I picked him was because he was a great man and a well known abolitionist figure. He dedicated his life to opposing slavery. I have always admired Douglass since my first grade teacher told my class about him. Once I researched a little about him, mainly the time period of his life, I realized he was a perfect choice for my I.P. topic. He interested me and I could easily get plenty of information on him.
I knew that all the information I needed was out there, I just needed to go out and find it. I went to my local library and checked out books on my topic. Remember, it’s about quality, not quantity, and that’s not an excuse for underachieving. I checked out three or four really effective books, a few that could be categorized as multigenre themselves. They contained both primary and secondary documents.
Secondly, I researched him on the internet; and I don’t mean googling “Frederick Douglass.” I searched specific things like “Frederick Douglass as a slave” and “Frederick Douglass’ escape.” This allowed me to narrow the “millions” of results one always gets when using Google. I received plenty of good websites that I could use that summarized his whole life.
I picked multigenre as my presentation category and its obvious why. Frederick Douglass’ life was a multigenre in a sense. He wrote letters and poems and narratives all about his life and slavery. He personified slavery and did all he could to abolish it. A multigenre would best represent Douglass and his life.
In order to make my multigenre effective in “moving” the reader, I had to look at one of the examples Mrs. Jackson provided me with. Using that as a template, I wrote poems and short stories appropriate to the time period that related to the idea of the wrongness of slavery and Douglass. I found pictures that illustrated Douglass’ ideas, as well as drew a few of my own. I tried to picture myself as a slave that hated the way I was treated to add that emotional feel to all my writings.
My project definitely relates to the theme, important people in history, because Frederick Douglass was an important individual in history. He was one of the more famous abolitionists and publically expressed his views on slavery. His words and writings were more effective than some because he was once a slave and could back up his sayings. Without some of the things Douglass did, I don’t believe slavery would have ended when it did. America remembers him for his inspirational story, a slave who became free to help others become free.
“A FREEDOM WAR; Frederick Douglass and the Second American Revolution.(Opinion).” The Post-Standard [new york city] 22 Feb. 2012: 1. Print. [I used this as an inspiration for one of my poems in the multigenre]
“Critical Points in Frederick Douglass’ Life; Confronted Lincoln on Issue of Slavery.” The Washington Times [Washington D.C.] 25 Feb. 2006: 2-3. Print. [I used this and made a replica of it and put it in the multigenre]
Douglass, Frederick, and Philip Sheldon Foner. The life and writings of Frederick Douglass. New York: International Publishers, 1950. Print. [I used this primary source to realize what and how Frederick Douglass wrote]
Douglass, Frederick, and Barbara Ritchie. Life and times of Frederick Douglass. New York: Crowell, 1966. Print. [This is both a primary and secondary source that shows how Douglass viewed his life and how another person, Barbara Ritchie, viewed his life and achievements]
Douglass, Frederick. Narrative of the life of Frederick Douglass an American slave. Charlottesville, Va.: University of Virginia Library, 1996. Print. [I read through parts of this as research to get a first hand view of his life. This is a primary source]
PBS. “Frederick Douglass.” PBS: Public Broadcasting Service. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2012. <http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/aia/part4/4p1539.html>. [I watched this documentary and used the information to back up my research and make my ideas of Douglass concrete]
Root, Damon W.. “‘A glorious liberty document’: Frederick Douglass’ case for an anti-slavery Constitution.(Frederick Douglass and the Fourth of July)(Book review).” Reason 1 Oct. 2006: 24-26. Print. [The author of this book expressed his view on Douglass’ anti slavery acts and this really inspired me to write a personified story of slavery]
“The Frederick Douglass Papers Edition: Home.” IUPUI : Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. IU Schools of Liberal Arts, n.d. Web. 29 Oct. 2012. <http://www.iupui.edu/~douglass/>. [I used the timeline at this website to summarize Douglass’ life and give myself a simplified view of his life]
“Welcome to the Frederick Douglass Foundation.” Welcome to the Frederick Douglass Foundation. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 Oct. 2012. <http://www.frederickdouglassfoundation.com/>. [This foundation really provided me with a good biography of Douglass and compared him to other anti-slavery activists like Lincoln and MLK] Turley, David. Slavery. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishers, 2000. Print. [This book gets into great detail of the what a slave would experience and what a slave owner would experience which really helped me with my multigenre]
Douglass, Frederick. My escape from slavery. Charlottesville, Va.: University of Virginia Library, 1996. Print. [This story was basically a multigenre by Douglass that helped me write a few works on slavery in my multigenre].”
Vernellia, Randall. “No Struggle No Progress.” autoredirect to main site. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Oct. 2012. <http://academic.udayton.edu/vernelliarandall/poetry/> [This website had a poem that I used in my multigenre. It was a primary source]