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Importance of Emancipation Proclamation for African Americans

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In the two plays named Fences by August Wilson and Hamlet by William Shakespeare. They are plays that had so many meanings behind it, but the one that got a lot of my attention was the two main characters Hamlet and Troy Maxson, for some people they might be considered heroes but to me they are not close to be. The meaning of heroes has so many different definitions. The first definition that we think right away is the one saying “a person with a cape that has superpowers, strong and good looking and that is willing to defeat the bad guy”. To me the definition of a hero is someone that is brave, courageous, valiant, bold, gallant, fearless, and daring to do anything for any loved one and racism is involved in one of the story.

In the play Fences by August Wilson is about African American life and experiences and examines race relations. Racism in the 1950 was very strict,

“I ain’t worried about them firing me. They gonna fire me ’cause I asked a question? That’s all I did. I went to Mr. Rand and asked him “Why? Why you got the white mens driving and the colored lifting?” Told him, “What’s the matter, don’t I count? You think only white fellows got sense enough to drive the truck. That ain’t no paper job! Hell, anybody can drive a truck. How come you got all the whites driving and the colored lifting?” He told me, “ Take it to the union”, Well, hell, that’s what I done! Now they wanna come up with this pack of lies” ( Act one 1233).

In this part the character Troy and his friend Bono are African Americans that work in a pick up trash truck and they are being discriminated against by not letting them drive the truck. Troy has asked Mr. Rand, their boss, why the black employees are not allowed to drive the garbage truck, but only to lift the garbage. But the boss did not care and said to take this questionnaire to the union. Many African Americans in the 1950s were not treated as good still even after passing the Emancipation Proclamation that declared ‘that all persons held as slaves’ within the rebellious states ‘are, and henceforward shall be free.’ Many African Americans were relief, because they were finally free and not a slave for someone

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“The Emancipation Proclamation was limited in many ways. It applied only to states that had seceded from the United States, leaving slavery untouched in the loyal border states. It also expressly exempted parts of the Confederacy (the Southern secessionist states) that had already come under Northern control. Most important, the freedom it promised depended upon Union (United States) military victory” (Franklin).

Every African American was expecting that by passing the Emancipation Proclamation was going to help them with their freedom that they deserved after so many years of mistreatment from the white people mainly or those in the high class with a lot of money. After that everyone learned that the Emancipation Proclamation had its good side and bad side of it. One of the bad part of it it was that the slavery was going to disapear in some part of the states that were seperared from the United States, but other states that were control by the Southern states were not following the Emancipation Proclamation. The good side that was good about passing the Emancipation Proclamation was that it help in some parts,

“Although the Emancipation Proclamation did not end slavery in the nation, it captured the hearts and imagination of millions of Americans and fundamentally transformed the character of the war. After January 1, 1863, every advance of federal troops expanded the domain of freedom. Moreover, the Proclamation announced the acceptance of black men into the Union Army and Navy, enabling the liberated to become liberators. By the end of the war, almost 200,000 black soldiers and sailors had fought for the Union and freedom” (Franklin).

Even that the Emancipation Proclamation did not end slavery right away, it gave people faith that one day slavery was going to be over and that gave them strength to keep fight for their freedom. After that African Americans were allowed to join the Union Army and Navy. It was a huge opportunity to have more soldiers and more bodies to fight other countries. The good reason why we want larger forces is, because our soldiers, sailors, Marines, and airmen are often fatigued and stressed from extended deployments so if we have more soldiers we can send the other ones that are not fatigues or stressed and the other ones that are can rest.

Any person of any race can get discriminated against, not just African Americans.

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Importance of Emancipation Proclamation for African Americans. (2022, March 17). Edubirdie. Retrieved September 22, 2023, from
“Importance of Emancipation Proclamation for African Americans.” Edubirdie, 17 Mar. 2022,
Importance of Emancipation Proclamation for African Americans. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 22 Sept. 2023].
Importance of Emancipation Proclamation for African Americans [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Mar 17 [cited 2023 Sept 22]. Available from:
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