HIST 405N Week 3 Assignment Case Study
HIST 405N Week 3 Assignment Case Study
The Abolitionist Movement
Long before the enactment of the Thirteenth Amendment and the emergence of the Radical Republicans, the basis of the American antislavery movement was formed. The contribution of the people known as abolitionists in later emancipation processes and social justice is invaluable. Relying on the religious principles and the Declaration of Independence, these people, who can be considered responsible reformers, accelerated positive social changes concerning the black population and women.
Discussing the role of the abolitionist movement of the 1830s, it appears primarily significant to address their ideological roots. As David Davis (2006), a professor and remarkable researcher of Western slavery, asserts in his book, the majority of arguments against the ‘peculiar institution’ had been formulated by the end of the 18th century. In essence, both early abolitionists and their successors saw slavery as “institutionalized violence and debasement of the human spirit” (Davis, 2006, p. 255). In other words, many leaders of this movement were influenced by evangelical Protestantism, thus rejecting violence as a means to their goal, ending slavery, preferring instead the strategy of ‘moral suasion’ (Corbett et al., 2017). This fact alone does not allow to refer to these people as irresponsible agitators, for in building their arguments, they were appealing to the population’s morality and basic principles shared universally by the nation.
Not surprisingly, then, one of the pillars of their argumentation was the Declaration of Independence. The notions fundamental to American people “that all men are created equal” and that “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” are unalienable were inherent to the agenda of abolitionists, as evident from the Declaration of Sentiments of the American Anti-Slavery Society (American Anti-Slavery Society [AASS], 1833). In fact, this document was not, of course, the first to appeal to these principles. Even more radical abolitionists, such as David Walker who published his famous Appeal in 1829 was asking, “Did our Creator make us to be slaves to dust and ashes like ourselves?” (Franklin & Higginbotham, 2011, p. 185). Clearly, this passionate and, at that time, very bold exclamation invoked the same principles.
Interestingly, the rise of antislavery sentiments can be to a considerable extent attributed to the efforts of the abolitionists’ opponents. The emergence of the AASS and publications such as Walker’s one often provoked an extremely radical and violent response from those whose worldview and lifestyle was challenged by these tendencies (Foner, 2011). The government also supported this struggle against emancipation, and the so-called ‘gag rule’ adopted by Congress in 1836 forbade the consideration of numerous antislavery petitions (Corbett et al. 2017). These acts expanded the fight against slavery to the fight for civil liberties in general, for the prohibition of discussions on slavery could easily lead to further restrictions of freedom (Foner, 2011). Thus, the attempts to stifle the opposition led to quite the opposite results.
Click here to ORDER an A++ paper from our Verified MASTERS and DOCTORATE WRITERS HIST 405N Week 3 Assignment Case Study :
Ironically, a similar phenomenon within the abolitionist movement itself contributed a lot to the rise of the women’s rights movement. Of course, this is not to say that the opponents of slavery were against women. In fact, women played an enormous role in the antislavery movement, circulating petitions, attending meetings, and educating. Moreover, this movement helped them realize that in many ways, the social and legal status of women is quite similar to that of the enslaved black population (Foner, 2011). At the same time, the majority of abolitionists were men who adhered to traditional principles regarding gender roles, which made it impossible for women to hold leadership positions in the AASS and promoted the creation of separate feminist societies (Corbett et al., 2017). Hence, the abolitionist movement’s role in the history of early feminism is also substantial.
Overall, the antislavery movement of the 1830s had in many ways inherited the ideological basis of its 18th century’s predecessor, claiming the inhumanity and moral corruptness of slavery. In that sense, the principles invoked by these people were consistent with Protestantism and the Declaration of Independence. For that reason, the attempts to suppress the movement only led to the expansion of the abolitionist movement whose contribution to the emancipation of the black population and women is hard to overestimate. Thus, it appears right to consider abolitionists as responsible reformers instead of mere agitators.
American Anti-Slavery Society. (1833) Declaration of sentiments of the American anti-slavery
society. Adopted at the formation of said society, in Philadelphia, on the 4th day of December, 1833. Published by the American anti-slavery society, 142 Nassau Street. William S. New York. The Library of Congress. Retrieved from https://www.loc.gov/item/rbpe.11801100.
Corbette, P. S., Janssen, V., Lund, J., Pfannestiel, T., & Vickery, P. (2017). U.S. History.
Davis, D. (2006). Inhuman bondage: The rise and fall of slavery in the New World. New York:
Oxford University Press
Foner, E. (2011). Give me liberty!: An American history. New York: W. W. Norton & Company.
Franklin, J., & Higginbotham, E. (2011). From slavery to freedom: A history of African
Americans. New York: McGraw-Hill.
The roles and norms by which women are accustomed to abide were varying from one colony to another. In the early 1600s, women of the Southern colonies were considered as indentured servants characterized by people who found their way to America and having to be placed under contract for work. Men were owners of land and properties while women were farming and doing settlements for the family. In a setting of a European family, men are considered to be responsible for business and sustaining the needs of the family. In contrast, women are expected to be farming, and sustaining the household needs of the family.
In addition to the roles and responsibilities of women in the southern colonies, women also played various roles in the northern colonies. They dwell more on strictly following the religious rules in doing things, observing the surroundings, and environment. One thing out of this is for sure, white women in the Colonial America were having a lot of responsibilities back then. White women were perceived to be appropriate in a household setup while others were to help their husbands as a backup or assistance. Despite this seemingly freedom when it comes to choosing they still have few rights as an individual citizen. They are deprived of an opportunity to vote, as well as property possession. The skills to be learned by children and women from all walks of life vary in the societal hierarchy. The intention of early training for people in the middle class is to prepare their children for their future endeavors. Giving birth at that point in time was risky and dangerous for both women and the children they are giving life.
It is safe to say that native women have more freedom when it comes to chores and role designation. They were much considered of value in the pre-colonial society compared to the colonial. Colonial women from various colonies are bound to obey certain roles and expectations set for them. On top of that, there are rights regarding the power to vote and ownership being neglected by the societies at that time making it difficult for women to be more of themselves.
Crow, T. Women. NCpedia. https://www.ncpedia.org/women-part-2-womens-roles-precoloni.
National Geographic Society. (2020, February 19). Women and Children in Colonial America.
National Geographic Society. https://www.nationalgeographic.org/encyclopedia/