Rape, sexual torment, and the loss of one ‘s self control of organic structure and head are all accounted for in the life of a female domestic house slave. Harriet Ann Jacobs, a female slave, experiences these hideous immoralities of bondage, and retells it to her audience through her slave narrative entitled Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. With the usage of a mixture of slave narrative and sentimental novel, the storyteller Harriet Jacobs targets the understanding of her readers, chiefly white Northern adult females, through her focal point on the subjection and psychological agony of female slaves imposed by white slave proprietors. By stand foring the function of force through the sorts of maltreatment levied on female slaves, this women’s rightist text besides unveils the conflict of black female slaves to happen their individualism during a clip in which they are stripped of their individuality and rights as adult females.
First, Harriet Jacobs uses tone to stress the unequal intervention of female slaves and the battle of adult females to individualise themselves. She straight asks her audience, whom are white Northern adult females, to non “ judge the hapless desolate slave girl excessively badly! ” because “ If bondage had been abolished, I, besides, could hold married the adult male of my pick ” ( 1847 ) . This tone of commiseration and compassion for slaves helps the reader understand that slaves excessively want to be happy and that their wants are non that different from Northern white adult females. By geting understanding, Jacob is inquiring for the aid of Northern adult females to halt the unfairness of bondage, which is impeding the self-expression of black adult females.
In add-on, Linda is able to show her individualism as a adult female when she enters her adolescent age and is sexually harassed by Dr. Flint, her white maestro. As Dr. Flint sexually harasses Linda, she explains the battle in seeking to defy him and non give in. She “ wanted to maintain [ herself ] pure ” and ” tried hard to continue [ her ] self-respect ” , but “ was fighting entirely in the powerful appreciation of the devil Slavery ” ( 1847 ) . Dr. Flint ‘s seduction Linda can be interpreted as an effort to asseverate his laterality over his belongings. However, Linda takes a base as she is determined to retain her pureness. As an act of rebellion to her function as a defenseless and docile slave, she has an matter with another white adult male, Mr. Sands. Linda is non proud to hold indulged in an matter with Mr. Sands. If she had better chances, she would hold taken them. But due to the limitations that society had placed on female slaves, Linda had no pick. Even though her maestro sexually harasses Linda, Linda demonstrates that adult females must stand up for themselves and non accept the ideals imposed by white proprietors on female slaves.
Furthermore, Jacobs shows that bondage ‘s mental and psychological inhuman treatment is every spot every bit annihilating as its physical maltreatments. Even if they were married, white Masterss continued to sexually mistreat and sexually hassle their female slaves. Jacobs provinces, “ Southern adult females frequently marry a adult male cognizing that he is father of many small slaves [ aˆ¦ ] They regard such kids as belongings, every bit marketable as the hogs on the plantation ” ( 1845 ) . The quotation mark explains how white slave proprietors would ravish their female slaves, even to the cognition of their kept woman, and, as a consequence, fathered many kids. These kids were seen as excess wealth in the eyes of white slave proprietors and were frequently sold, dividing female parent from kid. Hence, Jacob illustrates that the establishment of bondage breaks household ties and causes a immense psychological strain on female slave female parents.
However, many female slaves did accept the criterions of being the obedient and submissive adult females, a manner of life that Jacobs sought to stop through her narrative. For illustration, Jacob states “ I felt how much easier it would be to see [ Linda ‘s girl ] dice than to see her maestro beast her about, as I daily saw him crush other small 1s. The liquors of the female parents was so crushed by the cilium, that they stood by, without bravery to remonstrate ” ( 1850 ) . The tone of unhappiness and hopelessness as the female parents watch the physical maltreatment of their kids stress the loss of control and power the slave female parents had. It is as though they had lost their voice due to the bondage of bondage and the fright of recoil. Therefore, slave proprietors used force to deprive away human rights and powers from slaves to command them. To Jacobs, slaves were better off being “ the half-starved paupers of Irelands than to be the most pampered among the slaves of America ” ( Jacobs, 1842 ) . This statement explains how rights and freedom are much more of import than human physical demands. To Jacobs, the right to raise your kids, have a place, and marry was the true significance of freedom for black adult females.
In decision, Harriet Jacobs ‘ Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl was an uncommon slave narrative that described the debasements endured by female slaves at the custodies of an baronial maestro. The force caused by white slave proprietors in this text is represented by the suppression of rights and psychological and sexual maltreatment endured by female slaves. Jacobs ‘ narration is non merely about freedom, but besides sends a message out to Northern adult females, inquiring them to sympathise and assist stop the unequal intervention of female slaves. By making so, Jacobs is trying to stop the binary logic between work forces and adult females and inkinesss and Whites.