Essay: Powerless Situation of Slaves
Despite the powerless situation the slaves lived, they were determined to make it in life. This is evidenced by the determination and creativity most of the slaves inspired to keep their families together and buy their freedom. However, as it is evidenced by the $300 savings Brent’s grandmother lends to her mistress and she fails to return it back. The grandmother has worked and saved this money in the most part of her life but what she faces after she lends the money to her mistress is humiliation of the highest order. It is degrading and humiliating how the mistress can fail to return the money she was lend in good heart.
It is also ironic how a mistress can pretend to have no money and thus lend from a mere slave. Although the grandmother has earned her money through legal and just ways, she has no power over what is hers. She in fact can do nothing to get back her money from her mistress irrespective of who the rightful owner is. It is humiliating and ironic how the son in law to grandmother’s mistress responds to her when she asks for her money. He tells her “the state is insolvent, and the law prohibits payment” (Jacobs 20). The grandmother further sadly recalls how the law “did not prohibit him from retaining the silver candelabra, which had been purchased with that power” (20). This is a proof that the whites were kind of above the law while the blacks had to suffer all the coiling of the law. One cannot understand how a law can decline one from receiving what is rightfully hers. Since the grandmother is a slave with no power to exercise, she has to accept the bitter ruling of the said law.