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Beloved, Before You Read Part I Response

I need you to be thoughtful, deliberate, and compassionate when writing this response. 1) What do you already know about the “peculiar institution” of American slavery?

2) Which aspects of American slavery do you find most shameful?

3) Why do you think slavery remains such a difficult topic for discussion and resolution?

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  1. Phuong-My N.

    Phuong-My N.
    AP English, Per. 2
    2 January 2013

    1. I did not know anything about the term “peculiar institution” of American slavery until I googled it and I found out that it meant “the system of black slavery in the southern states of the U.S.” It must be a term used to soften the harshness of the word “slavery” because I have never heard of that before and it does not sound like anything cruel to me.
    2. One aspect of American slavery that I found most shameful was the way slaves were treated like dogs. Slaves did not have proper clothing for the seasons, were fed poorly, and worked all day with no breaks. Another aspect that I found most shameful was how whites were superior and were in charge of everything. Slave-owners were white, lawmakers were white, politicians were white. There was not any room for colored people to be in charge because the whites took over everything.
    3. I think slavery remains such a difficult topic for discussion and resolution because it pains others to talk about what their ancestors went through during that horrid time period and resolution cannot occur due to the fact that slavery still exists in many different forms. For example, mostly everything that is sold in the United States are imported from other countries. In those countries, people are forced to work long hours in factories for little pay.

  2. Desiree N.

    Desiree N.

    Ms. Keeble

    AP English 11

    2 January 2012

    1) What I know about the “peculiar institution” of slavery is that slavery in American was introduced by Barbadians from the Caribbean Islands. Americans noticed how the Africans worked hard and made Barbadians rich from their sugar plantations. Africans were shipped to the colonies and were forced to work on sugar,rice, and tobacco plantations.
    2) The aspect of American slavery I find most shameful is the detached feelings the masters would have about slave families. The owner of slaves wouldn’t care if their slave had a newborn baby, if he wanted to sell that slave, he would. The masters didn’t care if they separated husbands from wives, sisters from brothers, mothers from children, masters simply had no heart when it came for slave families. Some masters would have a heart and sell both a mother and her child but if the master did not have enough money, he would just sell one. Slaves knew it was only a matter of time before they would get separated from their families, most didn’t even bother to get married because they knew their husband or wife would probably be sold or killed.
    3) I think slavery is such a difficult topic for disscussion because many Americans try not to think about the horrible things we did to this group of people and others such as Native Americans. Americans want to forget about that part of the past.

  3. Dartise

    January 2, 2013
    Ms. Keeble, 1st per.

    1. I really never heard of this term being used in American slavery.

    2. The most shameful part of slavery was the whites selling the children and wives, basically separating families and treating them like animals. Also, the way some were beat to death.

    3. Slavery is still a difficult topic to talk about because some of the greatest American leaders were slaveholders, which raped and mistreated their slaves. Also, slavery is still going on today, so technically it would never be solved because it’s how foreign businesses make a lot of profit.

  4. Sarai P.

    Sarai Polanco
    AP English
    7 January 2013

    1: In all honesty, I do not know anything about “Peculiar Institution” besides the fact that it refers to slavery in the South.

    2: I feel that the most shameful part of slavery would have to be the way White Americans treated African Americans with paternalism. White people saw African Americans as little children who did not how to care for themselves. They felt it was their duty to “care” for African Americans. Evidently, African Americans could care for themselves, they were just never given the chance to do so, without having all the odds against them.

    3: As humans, it is in our nature to deny truths that are weighing a guilty conscious. Among other things, slavery harmed a large amount of people, as well as leaving a very large effect in society today. But aside from this, America is seen as home of the free, or as written in the Constitution, a place where, “all men are created equal,” but what will happen when America as a whole admits to guilt? If America ever admitted to guilt, America would be saying that everything this country is based on was contradicted, and ignored.

  5. Kiala A.

    Kiala Aranas
    AP English 11, 5th

    1) At first I didn’t make a connection between a “peculiar institution” and American slavery. Then I thought of the actual phrase in relation to American slavery, and then all of my history education came to mind. The phrase “peculiar institution” is what slavery in America was covered up as.
    2) On a bigger scale, the fact that the U.S. was one of the last powers to abolish slavery. The U.S. saw the abolition of slavery in many exemplar countries, yet the U.S. still practiced slavery. Instead of progressing in humanity with the rest of the world, the U.S. chose to try things out on their own.
    Otherwise, slavery in its entirety is degrading. There is no one thing that can be dragged out for execution.
    3) Slavery remains a sore subject because slavery was abolished RECENTLY, and our society is still recovering from the embarrassment of ignorance.
    On top of that, the U.S. did not make substantial efforts to relive the situation. Reparations were not carried out, and has clearly had a rippling effect today.

  6. Kiana Ledda

    Kiana Ledda
    AP English, Period 5
    1, January 1, 2013

    1. I’m not sure what the peculiar institution is exactly, but I am guessing that it was a formal term meaning slavery in the south.

    2. American Slavery is an all around shameful part in our history. The inequality between white and black people was just horrible. The slaves were treated with so much disrespect and they lived in very harsh conditions that no human being should experience. The black people were robbed of their education, proper housing, and freedom.

    3. I think that American Slavery is a very difficult topic to dicuss about because it was too cruel of a time. For instance, the bay area is very diverse and talking about the harshness of slavery offends many people. In addition, white and black people still can’t see eye to eye on the topic. Some white people believe that their ancestors did nothing wrong, while black people say otherwise.

  7. Efrain E

    Efrain E.
    Period 1
    AP English

    1) I am not familiar with the term “Peculiar Instituation”. However, I do know that American slavery involved bringing Africans across the Atlantic and forcing them to work plantation owners and other rich white people.

    2)On of the aspects of American slavery that I find most shameful is the instances in which a slave owner would have a child with his slave, and that child would be treated like just another object. How can someone have a child and then treat that child as if they were nothing but another tool?

    3)Slavery might still be a hard topic to talk about because as a nation we have just recently abolished slavery and there is still a lot of resentment for what happened in the past. There are also many racist people that still believe African Americans and other minorities are inferior to whites.

  8. Caitlin H.

    Caitlin Huie
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English Per 2
    30 December 2012

    1. I haven’t heard much about the term “peculiar institution” but I think it has something to do with slavery in the South.

    2. All aspects of slavery were shameful, but I believe that the way the slaves were treated was horrible. The masters acted as if the slaves were animals and they abused the slaves horrifically. The slaves were lynched and tortured and the whites didn’t think it was wrong. The masters thought of their slaves as property and they controlled them in every way possible.

    3. I think slavery remains a difficult topic to discuss because it’s very personal and emotional. Considering how different our thoughts are today than in the past, most people can’t imagine how and why people thought that way. Slavery brings up memories everyone wants to forget. Some are embarrassed by Americans’ actions while others are just too emotional to talk about it. People feel that it’s easier if we just forget about it and not go through these horrifying emotions.

  9. DaJohn Wade

    1) Peculiar Institution was used as a reference to slavery back in the south.

    2) The aspects of slavery that are the most shameful to me is the physicality of it. It cuts deep into my sane reality that blacks were literally hung up by their necks and set on fire. Children, mothers, grandmothers, fathers, pastors, ushers, and anyone of color could have burned alive. The agonizing pain and complete shock of this happening is something I could never come to an agreement on. Also, these slaves could have been skinned alive. The feeling of having your skin torn from your body is unbearable to think about. Words are nothing in my eyes compared to actions taken out on slaves.

    3)Slavery is still and will always be a difficult topic to discuss and resolve in my eyes. To talk about the treatment of my ancestors is painful, but to hear others possibly say that it is what they deserved will enrage me. To this day, there are some people who believe slavery was needed and justify everything that happened. You can never come to a common ground when you still have KKK meetings taking place in 2012. This era in history is better left unresolved and should be seen as one of America’s rock bottom periods. Instead of trying to resolve this, we should try to resolve what is going on now with racism, slavery, and segregation.

  10. Yarelli Lopez

    Yarelli Lopez
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English Language & Composition
    29 December 2012

    1) To be honest I do not recognize the words “pelicular institution” about the American slavery. Unfortunately, I had never heard of it before until now, but I had heard many things about slavery. In my opinion, it was such a cruel act to treat people as if they were your property and to have the right to do anything with them.

    2) One of the aspects of American slavery that I found the most shameful is for the slave owner to have the right to do anything with the slave and to take away its freedom.

    3) Slavery is a very difficult topic to discuss today because it affects many people. Perhaps if we touch this topic, people could get offended. It was an act of horror against certain ethnic groups such as African Americans. Therefore, we should not bring those terrible memories back.

  11. Canyon Riley

    Canyon Riley
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English 11, Period 2
    29 December 2012
    1) Slave owners justified slavery by using the expression “peculiar institution”. This expression was used as a possessive, to indicate that slavery was vital for the South’s economy. Although this contradictions the quote, “all men are created equal” in the Declaration of Independence, the slave owners saw the slaves as property and used The Bible to defend slavery.
    2) The most shameful aspect of slavery was how our government responded to it. The slave owners treated the Africans like animals, families were separated, free Africans in America lived in fear of being captured and the government just sat back and watched. Lincoln declared Civil War on the South only to end their secession from the Union, not to end slavery. It’s disturbing for humans to treat each other like this. We are all one race, the Human race.
    3) Slavery is a difficult topic to discuss because we are embarrassed of past and racial discrimination that followed. No amount of reparations can heal the nation for the scars of its dark past. The best we can do is to forgive ourselves and give awareness to stop human trafficking.

  12. Mercedes G

    Mercedes Gore
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English
    December 29, 2012

    1. I know that African Americans were slaves to the people in the south to do any hard work with the minimum pay. Almost everyone who had some sort of land also had slaves working on that land.
    2. I think that everything about slavery was horrible because nothing good came out of slavery. I think that the most shameful thing was how the slaves were abused this seems very wrong.
    3. I think that it remains difficult to discuss because it was such a hard time for people to deal with. Like all of the horrible things that happened to the slaves and the horrible memories it brings up when discussed.

  13. Alicia Oseguera

    Alicia O.
    AP English Period 1
    29 December 2012

    1) In all honesty I do not know anything about “peculiar institution” because I have never heard about this phrase. While searching in Google I managed to find out that this is slavery. It is the history of slavery from the beginning of European settlements to the end of the Civil War.

    2) The aspects of the American slavery that I find most shameful is the way the slaves were treated by their masters as if they were nothing but an object. Is just so awful that these slaves were beaten and in many cases really harsh or even hanged to show others the fear. It is shameful the fact that the slaves had to go through severe punishments when they in many cases didn’t do anything at all. All of torture the slaves were put through are just disgusting.

    3)I think slavery remains as such a difficult topic because many people have relatives that have been slaves or that were people that owned slaves.In many cases almost everybody has had at least one person that lived through slavery either by being one or being a master so it makes it hard for people to talk about it. Those times were really hard and it is not easy for those who were slaves or masters to forget what they had to go through so talking about it brings them pain. Not only that but because this topic is a very delicate topic that can offend many people. Slavery is not something to play around with because many people suffered.

  14. Kiloni D

    Kiloni Driskell
    27 December 2012
    AP English, 2

    1. I know pelicular institution was another term for slavery in the south. African Americans were forced into heavy labor. They worked In huge plantations. This lead the beginning of the Civil War.

    2. The aspects of American slavery that I find most shameful is the fact that they treated the slaves like they were animals. White men believed that America was just for the white because of their skin color. They thought they were superior. These slaves were lynched, raped, beaten, decapitated, and whatever that satisfied the white man.

    3. I think slavery is a difficult topic because several people get offended by the comments. These comments usually lead to a fight or escalate to something bigger. Slavery goes way back into the roots. Our ancestors were slaves and it’s just a sensitive topic to talk about. Slavery will always be apart of our lives an there is nothing we can do about it.

  15. Johanna G.

    Johanna Go-Oco
    AP English, Per. 2
    26 December 2012

    1.) I haven’t heard much about the “peculiar institution” of American slavery, except that it was a term used in the south for black slavery.
    2.) I find American slavery, all together, to be very shameful. I can’t imagine how one whole race could treat another so cruelly because of their skin color. It is simply immoral for a person to physically and emotionally take over someone else’s body and to force that person to obey them.
    3.) I think slavery remains such a difficult topic for discussion because society doesn’t want to look back on what their people did. I also think that most people don’t want to take responsibility for what happened so they avoid the issue, while others think that slavery is no longer relevant.

  16. Brenda C.

    Brenda C.
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English, Per 5
    26 December 2012

    1. I believe that “peculiar institution” is a form of African American slavery.
    2. There’s so many cruel acts of slavery such as lynching, whipping, starvation, etc. One of the aspects of slavery which I find the most shameful is the fact that they torture them till they die, they let them suffer so much when they don’t even deserve to be tortured. Just thinking about all the pain they went through truly makes me sad.
    3. Slavery remains such a difficult topic to talk about because of the things that have to be shown & explained to us, some of my peers might relate to it more than others but it will affect us all in different ways. Some of my peers might even have ancestors that went through all of that and were slaves.

  17. Gonzalo Haro

    Gonzalo Haro

    1) I know that slavery in the U.S. was very brutal and senseless towards African slaves. Future generations would be enslaved before they were even born. Slavery had a very negative effect on the African-American population for an extensive period of time. The “peculiar institution” of American slavery caused a lot of suffering.
    2)I find it shameful that slave-owners were entitled to the ownership of their slaves children, and their children, and their children. Entire future generations were already owned as if they were material possessions that could be passed down.
    3)Slavery is still a hot topic today because it greatly reflects on human nature. It was also a very shameful chapter in U.S. history and I don’t think it should ever be forgot.

  18. Veronica V.

    Dec 26, 2012
    period 1

    1.) I have never heard of “peculiar institute” used in terms of slavery, but by the looks of it, this was just another term for American slavery. Slavery in America was basically run by the whites which made African Americans work in harsh, unsanitary conditions, made them work for very little to no pay and were owned by the whites who purchased them. They were abused and taken advantage of by their sharecropper/ owner.
    2.) The most shameful part of American slavery was how the whites didn’t care about how they were treating their workers and how these African Americans were taken advantage when all they were trying to do is make a little money to support their families. Also, how the whites tortured and lynched these African Americans simply because they were looked down upon and were dehumanized of their race. Racism played a major role to how these African Americans were treated.
    3.) I think slavery is a difficult topic for discussion and resolution because it’s still hard for many of us to even think about how these African Americans were treated and we really can’t forget about these harsh events since slavery is still used til this day.

  19. David .D

    David Delgado
    Ms. Keeble
    Period 2
    AP English
    26 December 2012
    1. I really have no idea what “peculiar institution” means but I guess it had something to do with the slavery in the south.
    2. The most shameful part of American slavery was probably the slaves being treated like animals. They had no rights and the slave owners can abuse their slaves all they want. Most of the slave owners didn’t care about their slaves; if he/she felt the need to abuse them or kill them they could and nothing bad would happen to the slave owners.
    3. The reason why slavery is such a difficult topic for discussion and resolution today is because it is still in some countries. I’m not really sure in what countries exactly but it is still practiced. I believe that may never be a time when there isn’t slavery at all in this world.

  20. Rachael B.

    Rachael B.
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English, Period 2
    26 December 2012

    1. Despite the fact that I do not really understand what “peculiar institution” means, I already knew that the South heavily relied on slavery to keep their economy stable. The South relied so much on it that when the North decided it was something the country no longer wanted or needed, those in the South went to war for that slavery because it was their “way of life.” Slavery in America also was just a major part of its history, and it had affected its people as well as politics.
    2. All parts of slavery I would say is all shameful. It is shameful because it was morally wrong and unhumane. The fact that one group of people felt they were superior enough to have another just work without any care or consideration of how that group felt is something that can make one feel ashamed.
    3. Slavery is a difficult topic for discussion and resolution because it is something that Americans are ashamed of. Americans want to look at it as if slavery never happened and everything in the country has and will always be good. No one would want to bring up something that would demoralize him or herself. It is also difficult to talk about because it would bring people into controversial conversations that involve racism and that is something most people would rather not talk about since it is somewhat of the past.

  21. lizbeth R

    1) Peculiar institution, I think, was slaver. African being made into slaves.
    2) The part of slavery that I find very shameful was the way they treated the slaves. Slave owners didn’t treat them like people they treated them more like property. The slaves were treated worst then animals. For me that was the most shameful, how can a human being act in such a rude way towards another human?
    3) Slavery is a difficult topic to discuss because slavery was such a hard period in time. People went through a lot and it’s a hard topic that people take to the heart. Special when thinking on how many people were hurt because of slavery.

  22. Tanzeel H.

    Tanzeel Hak
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English, Period 2
    24 December 2012

    1) “Peculiar institution,” has something to do with black slavery in the south. I haven’t really heard this term before, so I am looking forward to reading about it to give me a better understanding on what it is.

    2) The most shameful part about American slavery is probably how heartless the whites were. They did not care about anyone else and would not second guess killing someone or just treating them badly. Their actions towards slaves were just scandalous.

    3) Slavery is still a difficult topic to talk about because it is still happening in other parts of the world. Quite frankly, it is somewhat weird to talk about it because most of our ancestors were slaves and others had slave owner ancestors. I don’t believe there could be any resolutions because there isn’t any compensation that can be given in order to suffice for the suffering that our ancestors had to endure through day in and day out. You cannot put a price to what they did for us.

  23. Zoey Madsen

    Zoey Madsen
    period 5
    AP English 11
    24 December 2012

    1. I don’t recognize anything about the “peculiar institution” of American slavery. However, I do know some of the struggles that people went through during that time. I also am aware of how much political, and emotional affect on society the American slavery self produced. It’s a huge part of American history that we’re all bound to be somewhat familiar with due to the importance of slavery taught throughout schools all over the world.
    2. The aspects of slavery that I find most shameful are the lives that were battered and lost. Especially the way slaves were mistreated and deemed as unequal. Slaves were stripped of their lives and their freedom, leaving them no power or freedom. Slavery doesn’t have it’s worst aspects, it’s aspects together are all horrible.
    3. I think slavery remains such a difficult discussion because nobody really wants to take responsibility for what was done (such as the government) or people are still hurt that slavery ever existed in the first place. A lot of people feel very strongly about slavery, especially the races most commonly targeted during slavery times. It’s a very emotional thing to think that such horrible things happened to such innocent lives. Although it’s a touchy subject for most people, American slavery certainly deserves it’s recognition for the people who lost their lives and were made to suffer.

  24. Ryan C.

    Ryan C.
    Ms. Keeble
    Period 1

    1) I don’t know what peculiar institution means. Although I searched it up and it said that it was a type of system of slavery in the south.

    2) What I find most shameful of slavery is how slave owners consider slaves as property.

    3) I think slavery is such a difficult topic for discussion and resolution because it has so much moral thought around the subject.

  25. Rachel N.

    Rachel N.
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English Language & Composition
    7 January 2012

    1) I don’t know a vast amount about the “peculiar institution” of slavery, but I can make a few inferences about how people viewed slavery and how it must have lead to this perception of it. A lot of people grew up with slavery back in the 1700-1800’s, but were questioning whether it was morally right. Even though people saw Negros as property, they still were aware that they were human and deserved equal treatment. This created much controversy and people just saw it as a strange act. Not really completely against it, but then not totally in love with it. This position created an unbalanced dynamic within society. Some people decided to take action against it, while others acted as a silent majority, supporting it.

    2) The aspects of American slavery that were the most shameful were how their humanity was completely taken away and how they were always disrespected for reasons they could not control. People would lynch, beat, and tear them down both physically and emotionally. Leaving Negros with the belief that they are worthless. The worst crime someone can commit is trust and confidence within yourself. Whites took that away from them because they were afraid of this culture and not used to it. This mean, degrading attitude lead various Negros to stick in the mentality that they are no better than anyone else.

    3) Slavery is still a difficult topic to discuss because people are still hurt by it and still are affected by it today. People’s rights were stripped away by the majority of another race. There is still tension between these two races today. It is difficult to talk about the truth of how certain people were treated. Bitterness is rampant and no one will forget how each and every person was affected.

  26. Joelynn D.

    Joelynn D.

    Ms. Keeble

    AP English – 2nd period

    24 December 2012

    1) I believe that the “peculiar institution” was just a nicer way of saying slavery; especially in the south. Even though many other countries had already outlawed slavery, America refused to let it go.

    2) I think that American slavery itself is very shameful because of the harsh and cruel treatment of people because of their skin color. To think that people could treat each other so badly is disheartening. I think that the worst part though is that even though “slavery” is gone today, there is still so much racism and inequality. Even though everyone agrees that slavery was one of the cruelest times in history, society is still biased to the color of one’s skin.

    3) I think slavery also remains a hard topic for discussion and resolution because as a society, we feel shameful for the way we treated people because of their race. We do not want to admit that the pictures and stories we see/hear are true and many people would rather remain ignorant to that part of history altogether. Also because it will take so much to make up for the mental and physical pain, torture, and belittlement that those people went through and so there is no real way to compensate for the damage that we, as a society, have caused.

  27. Oscar G.

    Oscar Gonzalez
    Period 1
    1. Peculiar institution, if i can remember correctly is basically slavery after the civil war in the South.
    2. The aspects of American slavery I found the most shameful are the fact that slave owners would lash the slaves for not ”meeting” their working requirements. It is just inhumane how slave owners treated their slaves.
    3. I think that slavery remained a difficult topic for discussion because there are so many feeling left in it that bring sadness to many people. And it was difficult to resolve this because it just gave so much profit to slave owners, which back then money gave them so much power.

  28. Dominique

    AP English 11 Per 2
    Ms. Keeble
    December 23, 2012

    1. The only thing I know about “peculiar institution” of American slavery is that it is another term for African American slavery in the southern states. I do not know much about it, but only what it is.

    2. I personally find the whole aspect of slavery shameful. I think that it is very inhumane to take a certain group of human beings and label them as lower than everyone else and force them to work like animals. Treating a different ethnicity different than your own is very shameful, because it shows how weak you are mentally and physically, making others preform tasks for you. What slave owners and people did to the slaves such as lynching and beating them was very shameful. Slaves were constantly mistreated and mistaken for doorsteps that everyone could just walk on. This is something no one should be able to look back on and be proud of.

    3. I think that slavery remains such a difficult topic for discussion and resolution because it is hard for some people to look back on because it might bring back bad uncomfortable memories or experiences. I think that today a lot of people are still ashamed of slavery and since it is gone in a majority of the nation, they feel as if it is unnecessary to bring up to discuss about. This is also a very sensitive topic that might offend people, and they will not take the time out of their day to talk about something so irrelevant and useless, since it was considered “the past”.

  29. Haley R.

    Haley R.
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English 11 per.2
    23 December 2012

    1)I know that Africans were brought over to the Southern area of the United States, because explorers saw their hard working skills. Slaves were told that they would be treated better as slaves, and have a better future when they got the exact opposite.
    2)Lynching/beating the slaves as well as the Auctions. These are some of the most shameful things that you could do to a human- then again slaves were not considered humans, they were animals- The whole African American race was full of shame because of the actions that the slave owners were taking.
    3) I believe this topic is so difficult to discuss still today is because there were many families that were influenced by the torture and horrid memories that were created by the slave owners. Also I believe that there are still some slave acts today. It may not be southern Whites enslaving African Americans, but the intention is still there.

    • tashak38


  30. Alexia George (Per 1)

    1) I do not know anything nor have I ever heard of “peculiar institution” of American slavery. I suppose it is the act of owning slaves or another word for slave-owners.

    2) The fact that anyone thought it was acceptable to own another is shameful. There is not one person on this earth that is better than anyone else. Along with the thought of slavery, the beating of slaves is disturbing. Getting whipped for hours and starved because I am two shades darker is humiliating.

    3) Slavery is difficult for people to talk about because of its disgrace to society. The elderly who lived in the slavery era may have witnessed the intolerable acts so they view it differently then younger people. The past three generations or so do not really appreciate the abolishing of slavery because they never understood how cruel it was.

  31. Brittany-Ann D.

    Brittany-Ann V. Dela Cruz
    AP English
    23 December 2012

    1. The “peculiar institution” was the term used by the south to refer to black slavery. It was a title that made slavery sound better than it actually was.
    2. It is extremely shameful knowing human beings judged one another by skin color. The cause of war, death, and hatred in what was supposed to be the United Nation, happened because of a gene that one could not control. It is just appalling that a shade decided your faith.
    3. I think slavery remains a difficult topic and resolution because we do not want to relive and discuss the shameful acts we committed. Current white people know they did wrong and they do not want to hear it again. Current black people do not want to experience feeling unvalued or neglected. By keeping the topic closed, it keeps those who were most affected at a content state of mind.

  32. Andrea O

    Andrea O.
    AP English
    1.Slavery in the United States began when people from African were brought to the United States in ships under horrid conditions which included little light and no room to move. People from Africa were used because they immune to the various diseases that were abound during those times and could withstand to be in the sun for long periods of time. When the slaves were brought to this country they were sold to the best bidder during auctions. The Southern States had the largest amount of slaves due to the fact that they needed cheap manual labor to maintain and harvest the huge plantations. The slaves were treated worse than animals as they weren’t even considered human beings.

    2. The aspect of slavery that I find the most shameful is that families were torn apart without consideration because the slave owners didn’t see them as human beings.

    3. I think slavery remains a difficult topic for discussion because nobody wants to talk about the atrocities that went on during that time much less apologize for the decisions that their ancestors made. I also think it is difficult to find a resolution for this issue because many young people today think that because it happened so long ago it is no longer a problem.

  33. Destiny Bets

    December 23, 2012
    Period 5

    1) Though I am not familiar with the term ” Peculiar Institution,” after searching for it’s meaning it is just another term for Slavery

    2) Everything about slavery is shameful in my opinion, just the fact that you had to do something because of the color of your skin.

    3) Slavery is a difficult topic to talk about, but it is also something fun to debate about because there are some who feel ashamed to speak of it and there are those who make joke or witty remarks about it. Some people may say it was okay and MOST will argue that it was absolutely wrong. Peculiar Institution is not only history but a memory for many others.

  34. Adria W.

    Adria Watson
    AP English per.2

    1) I know “Peculiar Institution” of American slavery was that is black slavery in the south after the Civil War.

    2) The tormenting aspect of slavery and the fact that some white people back then thought of slaves of being less than a human is the most shameful aspect to me. It sickens me to think that there were/are people who think less of other humans just because it was the way they thought it was supposed to be and needed to be. Or treating a human being as if they were an animal just because they were not the same color. It is just cruel.

    3)I think that slavery is such a difficult topic for discussion because some people can’t face the hard truths about America, or any other place at that. It is also a difficult topic for resolution because there is much slavery going on still in different places of the world that not many people know about and those who do know either don’t know what to do about it or just are unconcerned to do anything at all.

  35. Hannah R.

    Hannah Reddy
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English, Period 2
    23 December 2012

    1.I have honestly never heard about the “peculiar intuition” of American slavery. However, since I haven’t, Google told me that it “was a euphemism for slavery and the economic ramifications of it in the American South.” So it made slavery sound better than it actually was.

    2.What I find most shameful about slavery was the lynching. For me, when someone mentions slavery, or the topic is brought up, that is what I immediately think about.

    3.I believe slavery is such a harsh topic to bring up is because it was America’s low point. People come to America for freedom; it’s almost a safe-haven for some. So when you compare the two they are the complete opposite, like they don’t want to face the past.

  36. Elisha Hussain

    Elisha Hussain
    AP English 11
    Ms. Keeble
    December 23, 2013

    1) The “peculiar institution” of slavery was when African Americans were seen as better slaves during the Industrial Revolution. They were treated like dogs, given little to no pay, and were constantly being whipped if they didn’t do a task correctly. It was a terrible time for the African Americans, because many were being shipped to or from America for slave trade. They didn’t obtain any justice at all, and often were murdered without a trial for a suspected crime. The African Americans were wrongly and poorly treated during this time.

    2) The aspect that I find most shameful about slavery is when a person believes that they are superior towards others. It’s also a shame that these people were imprisoned and given a life that they didn’t want because of their color and race. For example, when we were studying about the cotton plantations in History and how African Americans were chosen to work in the fields because they were dark and weren’t prone to becoming sun burnt. It is really a shame that people can just take the innocent lives of others and torture them physically and emotionally.

    3) I believe that slavery remains a difficult topic for discussion and resolution, because it’s a very heart-breaking tradegy that people had to go through. Also, it stirs up emotions for many, and that often leads into hatred against others.

  37. Natasha R.

    Natasha R
    AP English
    23 December 2012

    1) The information about the American slavery era was that Americans were allowed to import slaves because the constitution said nothing about it being wrong.Also farmers or planters were tired of indentured servents running away, so they sought out to look for better and long lasting servants .

    2) The shameful acts that are imbeded in the minds of many is how cruelly they were punished.Slaves were forced to work in the fields when the light hit the earth until sundown, and they were whipped as punishment. In some occasions black women were raped by their masters. Families were seperated because of being sold or running away.These aspects are probably the most hurtful acts at the time.

    3) I’m not realy sure why slavery is such a big problem still to discuss, but it’s probably is hard to talk about because a lot of emotional and physical tragadies occured often. For those you really know how they lived and studied the slavery ere, they can say that yes, it is hard topic to discuss since many aweful events happened.

  38. Valeria Diaz

    Valeria Diaz
    AP English
    Period 5
    23 December 2012
    I know that the fact that “white” people used African American people as slaves because of their color. Not only did they use that race but any skin color that was darker than black people. they weren’t considered humans or “normal” because of the color of the skin. Their image was different so they were used different.
    I beleive their is not one that is most shameful. They are all shameful. Every single negative and harmful act towards a slave was shameful.
    I believe it is a difficult topic because it was such an impact towards a race and a color. honestly, it is hard for me to even say black people because I feel it is wrong. They are also humans and they don’t deserve all of the stereotypes that are given.

  39. Angel M

    Angel M
    Period 1

    1) Slavery till this day is still being used. Long ago the white men used this method to earn money and believed that the africans were perfect for this hard labor. Many of these masters did horrible things to the slaves that were considered lower than a human being. Some of this led to violence for these poor african people such as lynching , whipping , beat to death and other horrific practices.
    2) In my opinion I believe lynching was the most shameful because of how it was done. Some of the africans being lynched were burned alive and skinned as well. Its just sad to hear of these things and the africans couldn’t have done anything to the people that lynched them. This was a crime that was very cruel and scared a lot of lives.
    3) This act remains a difficult topic to elaborate about being of what they have done to these slaves. I believe that is very sad to talk about because these innocent lives being hurt. Some people get disturbed of this topic which makes them not discuss this horrifying topic.

  40. Niauni

    Niauni Hill
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English, Period 1
    23 December 2012

    1) Slavery is a touchy subject. I know that, Americans took in African-Americans not to be nice and genuine, but to be cruel and negative to them. Slavery was introduced when white landowners felt that African-Americans were capable of fulfilling tasks and daily routines. The white men felt that they shouldn’t have to do any work, so why not have someone “lower” than them suffer and sacrifice.

    2) The aspects I find most shameful about slavery is that whites are better than blacks, the harsh work given to blacks, and the treatments after and during time of slaving. 1) I feel everyone is equal. No one stands above no one because of skin color. Whatever a white man or white women is capable of doing, so is a black man or black woman. 2) The time consuming work giving to blacks is indeed draining, and deliberately uncalled for. Why should another man or woman clean up or do someone else’s duties? Because that’s how it’s supposed to be? No. It’s called self integrity. Do YOUR duties on YOUR OWN. 3) The treatments after/or during slaving is so harsh, you would wonder why the slaves stay. Well they have to…they have no other place to go, and even if they attempted they would be slashed and thrashed all over the place.

    3) Slavery remains a difficult topic for discussion and resolution, because racism is still alive, and people are afraid to speak up. Why are people afraid to speak up? They do not want to become victims of harsh crimes, and feel out of the ordinary. Some are afraid to be different. Some are afraid to have an opinion. While racism is still alive, some people feel inferior to others. They let others stand in a superior position, just because that’s how it was. When racial slurs are thrown all over the place, the black man/woman feels less than what he actually is. While feeling inferior to the white man/woman, he/she does not bother to step up. He/she feels intimidated.

  41. Maria Fajardo

    Period 2

    1) What I already know about the “peculiar institution” of American slavery is that it was used mostly in the suth for those who owned land and does who had alot of money.

    2)The aspects of American slavery that I find most shameful is that people owned people because of the color of their skin. The slaves were treated horribly.

    3)I think slavery remains such a difficult topic for discussion and resolution because it just so sad to even talk about and to think about how they were treated.

  42. Aaron Chon

    Aaron Chon
    Ms Keeble
    APENG 11, P2
    22 December 2012

    1) American slavery began with the importing of Africans through the Middle Passage into the New World because the Native Americans were unable to shoulder the work required of agricultural labor. Many Africans were shipped to areas of the New World that were most like the regions that they came from. Due to the increasing frequency of slave resistance and revolts, harsh slave codes were set so that slave interactions were minimized. Eventually, judicial intervention decimated slavery from the Northern colonies, while the Southern colonies relied on slaves for their plantation labor. The justification for slavery was that Africans were lazy and without purpose, so by making them into slaves, they were given purpose in life. American slavery lasted much longer than in other parts of the civilized world, finally coming to an end in the aftermath of the Civil War, yet discrimination remained for the next century.

    2) The most shameful aspects of slavery are the horribly ridiculous means of justification and the indifference of all parties that were involved. The justification that the Africans were lazy was so silly that if the Americans were not being serious, it would deserve a hug. The usage of religious texts to justify slavery was also ridiculous as well, as the slave owners interpreted religious passages to their own advantages, as many do even today. The indifference of those involved in slavery was one that was not of fault due to the environment that individuals were raised in, but it does not absolve them of it either. Those that were indifferent and did not question their style of life, whether slave or slave owner, were able to accomplish nothing through their silence.

    3) Slavery is difficult to talk about, like it is with many different taboos. For the whites, to talk about slavery is to reopen a time when unjustified prejudice clouded the minds of many, making their ancestors commit cruel and wretched acts. For the descendants of slaves, to talk about slavery is to reopen the shame and suffering that was endured by their ancestors, being in their lowest condition in all of history. Reopening old wounds, whether physically or metaphorically, is usually not a pain-free process, and even less helpful if there is little to nothing to be gained from it. Because of the modern time, there is no need to actively speak in protest slavery in a society where equality and justice are valued. Therefore, speaking about slavery is only in reminiscing about something that people would rather leave forgotten. There are important lessons to be drawn from that time, but when such is accomplished, it is best to let sleeping dogs lie.

    • tashak38

      I want you to go to Sigmund Freud. What does he say about memory and repression? I am going to give you, specifically, tools for reading–theory- so that you can push yourself. As we read the novel, keep Freud in mind. That will allow you to do a bit of a psychological reading, OK?

  43. Jessica A

    Jessica A.
    Ms. Keeble
    AP Lang. & Composition, Per. 5
    22 December 2012

    1. The “peculiar institution” is a term used to describe the slavery that took place in the southern states of the United States. In America, slavery happened on a daily basis. White plantation owners often abused the people of color in order for them to do filthy, sometimes life-threatening tasks. During the industrial revolution, many colored folks were placed in factories to endure conditions that weren’t suitable for life.

    2. The treatment of the colored folks is the most shameful part of American slavery. Those folks come from the same ancestral ladder that white people come from. We’re all one race- the human race. We all deserve to be treated equal.

    3. Slavery is a difficult topic to discuss, because a lot of individuals have past family members who endured slavery. Many colored folks of today may even become defensive while listening to slave stories. Slavery affected a great deal of people. It’s difficult to resolve because it’s occurred for such a prolonged period of time. It’s a hardship for many to overcome the horrific treatment many colored folks had to grow accustomed to.

    • tashak38

      Extra commas? Why?

  44. Merritt W.

    Merritt Walker
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English 2
    22 December 2012

    1. I know that slavery had an influence on American society. Europeans took Africans from their homes and villages, brought them on ships, and kept them in chains through the long journey to the New World. Once they got there, the Europeans used them as slaves. On the plantations, slaves were treated horribly, and when they were sold to other masters, they sometimes were separated from their families. Even after the Emancipation Proclamation freed the slaves they still weren’t treated as equals.
    2. Everything about American slavery is shameful. What I found the most shameful was the way that these people were treated. No one should ever be put down the way these slaves were put down. Slaves were beaten, raped, hanged, whipped, spat on, anything that could harm them was done to them. I don’t understand how people could have so much hate to other people. The white race thought they had a right to hurt the slaves because they were better than them; that is what I find most shameful.
    3. Slavery is such a difficult topic to talk about because there are a lot of emotions, hatred, and guilt. Pretty much every African-American in the United States has an ancestor who was a slave, for us it is personal. There are people alive today who went through the Civil Rights movement in the sixties, people still alive today who were discriminated against because of slavery which happened over 100 years ago. There are people out there that hate black people, and they think that blacks should still be slaves, in their opinion they are better than blacks, and slavery is justified. The other reason is guilt. Many white people don’t want to believe that their ancestors were so cruel to African-Americans. People just want to leave the past in the past. They don’t want to look back on hatred and violence; they just want to pretend that nothing was wrong. Nothing will get resolved unless people come together and accept the fact that there is a lot of hatred in this world, and instead of pretending it is not there, we need to fix the problem.

  45. Jonathan v

    Jonathan V
    Ms. Keeble
    Ap Lang and Comp
    Period 1

    1.Slavery was created when the world had to have “human machines to do the hard work”. Slavery was not just used to make the inferior people to do the hard labor to earn the superiors the good profit. They were categorized as belongings that could be lost and gained.

    2. I have two aspects that I find shameful of slavery. One of the aspects is the ieda that the white man was supposed to be better that is why they were the ones that owned slaves because of the skin color they portrayed. The second aspect is the idea that the slaves were not considered human but like animals that could be substituted if they worked themselves to death.

    3. I think that slavery remains such a difficult topic to talk about because sadly it still occurs today. Maybe not in the way back it happened back in the south, but there exists different eathods of it like prostitution and child labor in most cases. In prostitution girls are forced to give up their bodies to make a living and to pay their “pimp”. In child labor, kids are forced to work long hours and get little pay,often dying because of later sicknesses they develop or die in the job, getting no compensation what-so-ever.

  46. Alicia Gonzales

    Alicia Gonzales
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English 11
    22 December 2012
    1.) The “Peculiar Institution” was just basically another term for American Slavery, that has taken place in history and our society.
    2.) The aspects of slavery that I find most shameful is the fact that certain groups of people were looked down on and treated as inferior. Just because of their skin color, just because of where they came from. It honestly just breaks my heart that not everyone was treated equally, therefore people felt it was right to use other people as objects, just to get their work done, just to use them for whatever they may have needed done. Instead of treating a person like a human being, they treated them like they weren’t important.
    3.) Slavery remains a difficult topic to talk about and find a resolution to because I feel that for one, it isn’t the most interesting topic that people would actually want to talk about and learn more about. Furthermore, when some people think of slavery, they may feel pain and heartache within. Who knows what the person next to us may have been through, or maybe what their ancestors have been through throughout their lives.
    Just like the topic of immigration, for example. When topics of it are brought up in classes and whatnot, it’s a serious topic that can cause people to become real sensitive which can result in them being reminded of painful memories and their struggles. That’s how it can be with slavery too in certain cases. Maybe it’s not easy to talk about because of the feelings that come along with it, or maybe it’s just simply not what many would choose to talk about.
    If there isn’t a resolution, it’s because people aren’t speaking up, they’re not fighting for a change, and doing what they can to see slavery come to an end. One must not only wish for slavery to end, but do something about it to see it come to pass.

  47. Alexis L.

    Alexis L.
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English 11
    1.) I know that slavery for all Africans was created when white plantation owners began to see that Africans were better built for work. The treatment of the slaves was just horrid. Slavery also had a beneficial side to the economy of the South.
    2.)The thing I find most shameful and incomprehensible is when one human being can look at another and think they are better than them. The fact that the Declaration of Independence even argues about all men being created equal but it only applying to a certain group of humans is just irrational.
    3.) I believe that slavery is difficult to talk about because of the deep detail one has to go in to truly understand it. Slavery will always be around until the end of time because people will never stop believing that they are better than others.

  48. Caleb M.

    Caleb M.
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English, Period 2
    22 December 2012

    1) American slavery has had a profound impact on American society. The institution of slavery was originally meant to give the original colonials a working force that could sustain their crops in the Colonies. The slaves were shipped from Africa, and usually were betrayed by tribe members and sold to Europeans. Eventually, American slavery evolved into modern racism, in which the white slave owners found themselves to be superior to the African slaves and race in general. This led to unnecessary violence and cruelty to the slaves from white settlers, such as lynching. Slaves could be raped, crippled, assaulted, or murdered by their slave owners, and not be given any compensation or justice. Basically these slaves had no rights. Many slaves like Nat Turner, led rebellions, however, they were usually crushed by either the government or local white settlers. American slavery was a strong and organized establishment in American society that lasted for almost two-hundred and fifty years.
    2) The aspect of slavery that I find to be most shameful is the belief of white supremacy. To believe that a group of human beings is superior to another due to differences in skin color is extremely ridiculous. I also find it shameful due to the fact that many whites have upheld this belief and used it to justify unnecessary cruelty against African-Americans in both the past and present years of this country.
    3) Slavery remains to be a difficult topic for discussion because many whites in America do not know how to accept the fact that their ancestors were “the bad guys”. The United States also would rather have the Slavery era forgotten due to it’s hypocritical and barbaric traditions that do not coincide with the ideals listed in the Declaration of Independence, that basically states that all men are created equal with the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

  49. Jashleen Singh

    Jashleen Singh
    Ms. Keeble
    AP English Per 2

    1) What I already know about Peculiar Institution is that it is another term for slavery. It was a term used mostly by the south.

    2) I find lynching and torturing slaves with pain one of the most shameful aspects of slavery. How is that someone can already own a person to have him/her do their labor and still have the heart to kill or whip them? The whole concepts of all their punishments truly disgusts me.

    3) I believe slavery remains such a difficult topic for discussion because as country, it is shameful looking back at what we once said was okay. Also, I think because so many people have ancestors who are slaves, the topic can get extremely emotional.

  50. Raymond P.

    Raymond P.
    AP English P.5
    Ms. Keeble
    22 December 2012

    Long ago the Americans went to another country, they “found” black people. The Americans easily thought that they can over power them, and which they did. Americans captured thousands of blacks so they can be slaves in the US. They were sent through a ship with terrible living conditions and many died through the journey. When the slaves got to the US people bought them and made them do everything, the slaves were constantly mistreated. Eventually, later on the slaves revolted; strong people came out of this.
    There are tons of shameful acts, the main one in my opinion is Americans evening owning a human. The slaves were no different from the Americans, but they did not see it in that way. Worst of all some were beaten and mistreated like they were not humans at all.
    I believe this is such a difficult topic to talk about is because many people get affended. This horrific act that the Americans did make this difficult because we do not think that we would do this today.

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