Compare and Contrast Frederick Douglass and Sherman Alexie

Topics: Frederick Douglass, Sherman Alexie Pages: 3 (929 words) Published: November 25, 2012
Different Worlds Same Struggle
Sherman Alexie and Frederick Douglass both grew up in different time periods, in different environments, and ultimately in different worlds. They both faced different struggles and had different successes, but in the end they weren’t really all that different. Although they grew up in different times they both had the same views on the importance of an education. They both saw education as freedom and as a sense of self-worth and though they achieved their education in different ways they both had a strong will and a strong sense of self-motivation.

Frederick Douglass and Sherman Alexie both grew up in different times and environments. Frederick Douglass was born in 1818 and was raised on a plantation as a slave, Alexie was born in 1966 and was raised on an Indian reservation, but being raised in different worlds didn’t make either of their struggles any different or easier than the others. They both faced judgment and discrimination against their races. Due to their different races they were both considered stupid, illiterate, and were thought to doing nothing with their lives besides working on a plantation or becoming an alcoholic and drug addict. Getting out of those types of environments and doing better things than what they were thought to do was just one of the many things that motivated them into getting an education.

Both men had different ways of achieving their education. Sherman Alexie had Superman, his dad, as a guide for him. Alexie watched his dad do better for himself and his family than what a typical Indian was supposed to do. Watching his father read and educate himself was Alexie’s initial motivation for him to want to get his education. Frederick Douglass was one step ahead of Alexie in the fact that he had street smarts. Douglass self-educated himself, he had no one to look up to or to help him. Douglass essentially used the system to gain his education. He not only tricked white boys into teaching him...
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