Benjamin Banneker’s Letter to Thomas Jefferson: Confronting Slavery

April 27, 2022 by Essay Writer

In this letter to Thomas Jefferson, Banneker wanted to demonstrate slavery is a thing from the past and, how inhumane it really is. But, I believe his main argument was how, challenging Jefferson’s conclusions of pro-slavery as conflicting with the Declaration of Independence. Within the letter, he conjured the American battle against Britain and pointed fingers on Jefferson to realize slavery’s pitilessness. This was heavily shown in line 24,”time in which the Arms and tyranny of the British Crown were exerted with every powerful effort in order to reduce you to a State of Servitude.’

This evidence makes a connection to there own society and time period by having where the United States also committed an act of prejudice. Benjamin Banneker’s letter started a truce and conflict with Thomas Jefferson. Their composing assist uncovered Jefferson’s conflicting sees on subjugation and race, as he communicated doubts almost the slave exchange whereas owning subjugated African individuals, and declared that the dark and white races were actually particular. Thomas Jefferson moreover wanted that flexibility for African Americans would be taken after by a colonization arrange to migrate them exterior of the joined together. ” he proceeded, “ in confining by extortion and viciousness so various a portion of my brethren beneath moaning imprisonment and unfeeling abuse, you ought to at the Same time be found blameworthy of that most criminal act, which you professedly disdained in others, with regard to yourselves. ” I believe from these statement he wanted to grab Thomas Jefferson and hook him on to his thesis.

Additionally, Banneker using a stronger and much powerful approach to Jefferson and to his argument by adding the religious factor. He mentions the logic of god which resulted him meaning business and wanted to make his point clear about abolishing slavery. Where Banneker states,. “which so generally prevails with respect to us, and that your sentiments are concurrent with mine, which are that one universal Father hath given Being to us all, and that he hath not only made us all of one flesh, but that he hath also without partiality afforded us all the same sensations, and endued us all with the same faculties, and that however variable we may be in society or religion, however diversified in situation or color, we are all of the same family, and stand in the same relation to him”.

Banneker makes several references to “the Father” where he wanted to take Jefferson’s time and make an oath. One rhetorical strategy Banneker uses is having a repetition of the word “ Sir”, I believed Banneker wanted show he was capable of being at the same amount of “intellengence” and comprehensiveness. He wanted to prove that he wasn’t like anyone else and that although because of his background he didn’t want that to define him.


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