Chat with us, powered by LiveChat Topic #1: ?(Relating to The Quadroons?).?In addition to its literary significance, the short fictional story The Quadroons? is important because of its historically persuasive - EssayAbode

Topic #1: ?(Relating to The Quadroons?).?In addition to its literary significance, the short fictional story The Quadroons? is important because of its historically persuasive

Topic #1:  (Relating to “The Quadroons”). In addition to its literary significance, the short fictional story “The Quadroons” is important because of its historically persuasive message/theme. Lydia Maria Child wrote this story to be included in an anti-slavery publication called The Liberty Bell, first published in 1842. This was nineteen years before the Civil War began in 1861, but the Abolitionist Movement (to abolish slavery) was gaining strength and momentum. Child’s purpose was to show the emotional, spiritual, and physical devastation caused by slavery, particularly to readers in the Northern states. Many people in the North (where slavery had been abolished for the most part by 1800) knew of slavery only from a distance, literally and figuratively. Child provides a fictional but also realistic example of life in a state where slavery was legal, in this case, Georgia. By the end of this story, all of the key characters are dead, similar to what we would expect to see in a Shakespearean tragedy. In this case, the tragedy is slavery itself. How effective do you think “The Quadroons” is in illustrating the author’s and other Abolitionists’ ethical/moral/legal views about slavery? A common question at the time was “how could Xarifa become a slave when neither she nor her mother, Rosalie, had ever been slaves?” The story answers this question in a way that was surprising and appalling to readers who were unfamiliar with these circumstances of slavery. Discuss your thoughts on these issues and any others that are relevant to the story.

Topic #2:  (Relating to “The Quadroons”). As stated in the above topic, this story is undoubtedly a tragedy for all the main characters, but particularly for Rosalie and Xarifa. Lydia Maria Child’s fictional but also realistic story has elements of Shakespearean and Ancient Greek tragedy as well. For example, all the main characters are dead before the story ends. Some of these characters, particularly Edward have “fatal flaws” that contribute to their own deaths and the overall tragedy of the story. In Edward’s case, he allows his political ambitions to take precedence over his love for Rosalie, even though he regrets this decision almost immediately. In fact, he becomes so miserable in his loveless marriage to Charlotte that he becomes an alcoholic and dies when he falls off his horse, which he was riding while drunk. In addition, the central tragedy of this story is that all the characters are living under the rules and laws of an evil system: slavery. No matter how well intentioned many of these individual characters are, they are doomed by the system under which they must live. Even though Edward does everything he can to protect his daughter, Xarifa, and Charlotte continues this support and protection after Edward dies, nothing can prevent what ultimately happens to Xarifa, even her beloved George, who also tries to rescue her and ends up being shot and killed. The slave who acts as a “double agent” and betrays Xarifa is also a victim of the evil system. How does this interpretation align with the author’s purpose in revealing the hopelessness of living with the evil of slavery? Discuss your thoughts on these issues and any other aspects of the story that you find interesting. 

Topic #3:  (Relating to Lincoln’s “House Divided” Speech).  Delivered at the Illinois State Capitol in 1858 after Lincoln had accepted the Illinois Republican Party’s nomination for U.S. Senator, this is one of his most famous speeches leading up to the Civil War. Although Lincoln lost this 1858 Senate election, many historians believe that this speech had a significant role in his winning the Presidential election in 1860. His position on slavery is clear, and he does not hesitate to explain his reasons with strong, supporting evidence. He is also very clear about his Democratic opponent’s position on slavery (Stephen Douglas). Lincoln draws upon a variety of moral, ethical, and religious beliefs in this speech, including the Biblical quotation from the New Testament about “a house divided.” Discuss the specific evidence that Lincoln uses to make this speech as powerful and persuasive as it is. Also discuss any other aspects of the speech that you choose. 

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