Middle Class In America

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Middle class Americans are a group variously described throughout American history. However, the term “slaves” would probably never be chosen as a description of this societal group. Outside of the unfortunate illegal slave trade stories reported by the news media, the concept of slavery is considered a “thing of the past.” However, the stories and poems created by Realism authors such as Mark Twain and Paul Lawrence Dunbar provide a continual reminder of the heinousness of this practice. Their works do not speak of the facts and figures and arguments either for or against slavery but of the actual human experience of being a slave. When reading their work, one feels the emotional and mental impact of being a possession, of the lack of choice and of the absence of freedom. Following the Civil War that tore America apart and the 13th through 15th Amendments to The Constitution, slaves were technically “freed” and espoused specifically with the freedoms and rights of citizens. These former slaves, now “free” workers, ultimately joined forces with legions of “working class” Americans to form the foundation of the American workforce. After the Great Depression, with…show more content…
The uncertainty of the future is a nightmare from which they cannot seem to wake. Confidence in their abilities, their experience and skills honed and/or possession of a stellar education may be all for naught. The vying for re-employment has become almost laughable. In Mark Twain’s “A True Story, Repeated Word for Word as I heard It,” Aunt Rachel describes the experience of being sold at a slave auction: Dey put chains on us. . . An’ all de people stood aroun’, . . . An’ dey come up dah an’ look at us all roun’, an’ squeeze our arm, an’ make us git up an’ walk, an’ den say, ‘Dis one too ole,’ or ‘Dis one lame,’ or “Dis one don’t mount to much.’
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