Criticism. Spring, 1992, Vol. 34 Issue 2, p193, 24 p.
Women -- Portrayals and Sentimentalism in literature -- Criticism and interpretation
Frederick Douglass used the feminine to symbolize slavery and yet sentimentalized his relationship with his mother, making her have the characteristics of a maternal love that was denied to the slaves. Though critics accuse Douglass of identifying with the white slaveholders over the slave women, he uses his mother, grandmother and other female slaves as a starting point to demonstrate the inhumanity of the slave culture, making them symbolic of what was lost and what could be regained.