Honor and Slavery

Topics: Truth, American Civil War, Southern United States Pages: 2 (599 words) Published: March 8, 2006
Honor and Slavery
Honor and Slavery written by Kenneth S. Greenburg examines the old-fashioned ways of the men of the Deep South during the United States formidable years. He delves deep into the actions of these men and offers new meanings to what we may consider innocent horseplay or mild disrespect. Greenburg introduces a new meaning to the age old saying, "Actions speak louder than words". The Honorable men of the Deep South said very little, however more often than not their arguments were conveyed with precision and tact. Imagine a 30 year old man being sent back in time to the mid 1800's. Of course he would be baffled by the lack of technology, clothes, food and the like but would he know how to conduct himself around friends, foes, and politicians? Chances are even if he were to completely blend into his surroundings he most definitely would have no clue how to go about communicating with his fellow man. Had Greenberg not offered his translation of this unspoken language one would be inclined to think these men were crazy. A dictionary definition of honor would read something like being highly respected or possessing a good name, but many of these men attained this so-called honor by way of slavery. The products the slaves produced allowed for the lavish lifestyles and afforded the title of being an honorable man. An honorable man was brave, courageous, and intelligent, whereas slaves possessed none of these attributes prohibiting them from possessing honor. It is very ironic that the honor these men thought they had, laid in the hands of people that could never attain honor. Without the slaves the archaic institution of being a Man of Honor never would have been able to exist. Along with being brave, courageous and intelligent a man of honor was supposed to be truthful and trustworthy. As it is to and always will be, the truth was valued. At time the truth was stressed a little too much. The Feejee mermaid is a principal example of how...
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