Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass: The battle between Freedom and Slavery
It was during the Civil War era that both Frederick Douglass and Lincoln fought to destroy a country that was filled with turmoil of slavery. It was then that some of the best speeches came to be. Both of these orators fought for the same thing but they were so different. Frederick Douglass was a African American that was fighting for African American civil rights through speeches such as “Why Is the Negro Lynched?” and “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” while Abraham Lincoln was fighting for unity for all within the Union and Confederate states. Both of these speakers were able to captivate their audiences through their unique tones, methods, and diction to win over the audience and gain their support.
Unique Tones, Methods, and Diction for Douglass
Douglass was very clear and had one purpose when it came to making speeches and that was to gain rights for the African American community. He believed in equality for all, regardless of what color they were. He was a former slave that had in fact experienced the terror of being a slave, and he had gained sympathy (1852) and credibility from his audience during “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” It was due to Douglass’ personal experiences that he was able to use pessimism and patronizing diction during this particular speech to show how he and all of the African Americans felt. Douglass stated, “I will use the severest language I can command; and yet not one word shall escape me that any man…shall not confess to be right and just” (1852). This grabbed the attention of the audience and forced everyone to listen to what he was going to say. He bad mouthed his audience and called things such as deceptive, savage, heartless, empty, unholy, and more. This awoken the audience to what was really going on during the Civil War era of slavery. It allowed him to communicate effectively to his audience. His tone was...