The biggest part of overcoming oppression is realizing that you are oppressed. Frankie Mae, Frederick Douglass, and Jose Yglesius all came this realization, and dealt with their oppression in different ways. Frederick Douglass was a slave, who was in a way lucky, owned by a master who had initially taught him to read. However, soon after he was taught to read, his master had restricted him from literature because it was a privilege for white’s only. This injustice and restriction of literature only fueled Douglass’ desire for reading, and he continued to read in secret behind his master’s back. Literature became a tool of enlightenment for Douglass, and it helped him come to the startling realization of the oppression he was living under.
Jose Yglesius was an oppressed exploited worker during the Great Depression, who’s job was to hand-roll expensive cigars. As he worked, he would listen to readings from some of the greatest writers. Yglesius always knew that he was oppressed, but once his boss restricted him and others from listening to these readings, the workers came together and revolted. Frankie Mae was young ambitious girl, who’s only dream was to get an education. However, once young Frankie came to the tragic realization that she’d never have any rights even if she was educated because she was black, she became so depressed. She lost all desire to live, and died soon after. Douglass, Yglesius, and Frankie Mae all dealt with their oppression in different ways. Mae lost all passion for life, while Douglass and Yglesius used literature in their own favor and fought against their oppressor.
In the 21st century, Literature and media have always been a mean of connecting people together, and enlightening society about the oppression in which some of us live. The Arab Spring of 2011 is a prime example of how media can inform masses of people about their oppression. This is especially relevant when talking about the Egyptian revolution, where social networking websites like Twitter and Facebook were significant tools in spreading news to each other. We saw first hand images, and stories being spread on these websites. The whole world watched as Egyptians would tweet where protests would be organized, and they all gathered together and successfully evicted their cruel president. The people used media as a tool to unite together, and fight against the oppression they lived under.
Ali Suliman –008