Black and white illustration of Frederick Douglass

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave

by Frederick Douglass
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Why does Douglass believe he needs to use forceful language? from The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass book

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I'm amazed Douglass didn't use forceful language in everyday conversation, given the horrors of his upbringing as a slave, and a runaway slave recaptured, or a slave sent to the "slavebreaker". 

Douglass had to feel outraged and incensed that, even in the North, in the middle of a supposedly Christian nation, people weren't more outraged and willing to do what was necessary and right to end the institution.  Some people even called him a liar, saying he was so well spoken and well written that he could never have been a slave.

On a more practical level, I think he felt, like Garrison and John Brown, that Americans needed to awaken, and that he could shout and shock them awake with his speeches and his writing.

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