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Heroic Slave Rebel in Delaney's Blake or the Huts of America and Dougla

Heroic Slave Rebel in Delaney's Blake or the Huts of America and Douglass' Heroic Slave

The fundamental element of a successful slave rebellion is a heroic slave rebel. Madison Washington of Frederick Douglass' The Heroic Slave and Henry Blake of Martin Delany's Blake or the Huts of America serve as models of that rebel. First, he must possess a will to stay and fight-he must not be content to just run away and gain individual freedom, abandoning his family and friends. Second, he needs intelligence, and preferably education as well, to be able to organize large, complex plans of rebellion. Finally, he must be a natural leader, drawing fellow slaves and free abolitionists to follow him and fight for his cause. Throughout the novels, examples of all of these characteristics can be found in both heroic slave rebels.

For most American slaves, there were only two paths to freedom: running away or successfully plotting and carrying out a rebellion. The path of flight was much easier and was the path chosen by almost all dissatisfied slaves who decided to take action.

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