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Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom by William Craft - Essay Example

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RUNNING A THOUSAND MILES FOR FREEDOM Name of Student (author) Student ID Number: Name of Course: Professor’ Name: Name of School (University) Word Count: 1,359 September 27, 2011 Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom Introduction Slavery was a blight on human history and anomaly in the American landscape…
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Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom by William Craft
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Download file to see previous pages Craft saw and experienced the pain of being separated from his parents, when his father and mother were sold separately because they were getting old and would soon become useless and a liability. His sister and brother were sold off too, much later. A book like Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom gives a different perspective of slavery. In it, he recounted instances that disproved commonly-held beliefs and wrong notions of black slavery because there were white slaves among them. Another is that Christianity had been distorted that allows religious piety to co-exist with the abominable practices of slavery. Slaves had to use their guile and other subtle, indirect means to outwit their white slave masters and avoid the worst of slavery.2 The reader gets a nuanced and first-person account of what the life of a slave was. In his Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom, Mr. William Craft wrote how he was a slave for twenty-three years of his life before finally taking action and became a free man. He and his future wife Ellen were born in different towns of the state of Georgia, which was one of the principal slave states back then but got to meet and get acquainted with each other in the large town of Macon. Their marriage was delayed for some time being both slaves but Craft admits they had been a bit treated much better than the other slaves but still slaves, treated as chattels with no legal rights. It took them about eight days of hazardous travel to finally reach a land of liberty. They got their freedom when a rare opportunity presented itself sometime in December of 1848. Discussion The engrossing book Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom is an eye opener of sorts. A common perception was slavery was strongly associated with enslavement of black people but in their book, the authors gave an example of how avarice had led to the corrosion of the moral values of people desperate to get money from the slave trade. In their book, authors William and Ellen Craft mentioned an instance where even completely white people were taken advantage of and sold into slavery. They cited the case of a white German immigrant named Daniel Muller and his two daughters who arrived in America through New Orleans sometime in March 1818 but whose wife unfortunately died during the voyage. By a stroke of bad luck, Daniel died of a fever while working in a plantation owned by Mr. John Miller and his two young daughters were suddenly orphaned, left helpless and kidnapped. This true story illustrates the wrong perception that only black people were sold and held in slavery; even completely white people were also held in unlawful bondage by unscrupulous white people. There was no assurance that having a white skin makes a person safe from becoming a slave. Anyone who was unfortunate enough to somehow fall into the trap of slavery will have a very hard time escaping from it no matter what (whether white, black or any color) as the laws were fully stacked against any slave. Any testimony offered by a slave was inadmissible in court and practically worthless if given against the testimony of a free white person. William Craft was familiar with many other slaves who told him their parents were white and he also cited the case of a boy kidnapped at age seven and then tanned, stained and colored black to be sold as a slave. His own wife, Ellen Craft, was also almost completely white, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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