13th Amendment

Posted: November 27th, 2013

13th Amendment

The 13th Amendment was passed by the congress on January 31 1865 and approved on December 6, 1865. The issue is about the abolition of slavery in the US. The 13th Amendment abolished slavery in the United States and recommended that apart from criminal punishments, slavery and involuntary servitude shall not exist in the US. The 13th Amendment was the first Reconstruction amendments ratified during the era of President Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation revealing that all individuals held in any state as slaves shall be left free. However, the Emancipation Proclamation did not end slavery in the US. Lincoln comprehended that the liberation declaration would be followed immediately after the amendment of the constitution in order to abolish slavery. Thus, the author reveals that the abolition of slavery under the 13th amendment and the way Emancipation Proclamation turned slaves into free persons in US as well as its jurisdictions.

The article, Instead of Waiting for the Thirteenth Amendment: The War Power,

Slave Marriage and Inviolate Human Rights reveals the abolition of slavery in US and the effects it had during the civil wars. It explores the American history throughout the period of the progressive era and the counterpoint between the two antislavery decrees adopted by the congress of US. It examines the effect of the introduction of the Emancipation Proclamation by President Lincoln commenting that it was an unfilled document because it did not free any slaves. President Lincoln wanted all the slaves held in the south to rise up in rebellion against the US. He warded his document carefully in legal terms in order to make it legally binding in the future law courts. Additionally, the author tries to bring out the slavery issue and the way the 13th amendment aimed to abolish slavery. The amendment was to enlighten people about the strain of the American human rights. It aimed to abolish slavery, deliberate involuntary servitude, violence and discrimination that arose due to racism.

The author reveals the abolition of slavery under the 13th amendment and the way liberation declaration turned slaves into free persons in US as well as its jurisdictions. The author is interested in the history of slavery, emancipation as well as capitalism and historical experience of moral issues. However, she is most concerned with the issue of slavery, how it led to the institution of the 13th amendment and its effects on the American people. Thus, she hopes to prove the idea of human rights, how they freed people from the bondage of slavery and especially the women who were slaves. Stanley wants to demonstrate the way the 13th amendment was put into place during the progressive era and the way this policy tried to abolish slavery thus setting individuals free.

The author has employed diverse methodologies in order to prove her point of the article. First, she employed use of primary sources that she wrote during the time she was conducting the study of the research issue. For instance, the letters she wrote to President Lincoln, news film footages and the speeches are all an indication of the original documents she uses as primary sources. Additionally, the journal article is one of the primary sources reporting the research and findings about the American history during the progressive era. Secondly, she employed the use of secondary sources that interprets and analyzes the primary sources. For instance, she used some quotes from the primary sources such as “I had hoped that this constitutional amendment[1] would pass”. Additionally, she included pictures of the emancipation, domestic institutions and illustrations of the American Anti-slavery in her primary sources to emphasize as well as prove her point in the article. She used a collection of other secondary textbook materials to collect data thus providing a clear point about her views on the slavery during the progressive period.

The author successfully uses her sources to prove her point. For instance, the use of secondary sources such as the use of pictures, especially the one illustrating the American Anti-slavery success, proves her point about the issue of slavery. Nevertheless, the use of letters that she wrote to President Lincoln is an indication of how the author successfully employed primary sources in making her point clear. Another methodology is the use of quotes such as “I am yours, a slave[2] woman vows to her husband” dramatized by the antislavery writer known as William Wells. The use of diverse textbooks in her research findings provides vital information of the slavery issues that were solved through marriage bonds. The author incorporates the work of other writers such as Garrison, William wells, Sarah Grimke and many other writers to reveal the suffrage of women, slavery and emancipation during the American history.

Stanley Amy succeeds in changing the reader’s mind because of the methodology she employed while carrying out research and findings of the subject issue. What mostly makes the reader change their mind is the use of pictures that she used indicating emancipation and anti-slavery pictures. Her incorporation and use of different methodologies especially the use of some quotes in her writing makes her succeed in influencing the reader’s thinking. However, there are areas that have some weakness in Stanley’s article. One of the weaknesses is the use of one source of reference throughout the work. This creates biasness of the information presented in the area of primary information. Although the incorporation of many sources provides adequate information to the researcher, they sometimes lead to contradiction of the information presented in the text. Another weakness is portrayed in the area where she used pictures to illustrate the journey of slaves from the plantation to the battlefield. This area has some weakness because the pictures does not portray the subject issue clearly thus making it ambiguous.

The paper that I read has diverse use of sources especially the data collected from various sources makes one become prejudicial towards the article. This brings out the historical ideas of violated rights in a contradictive way. However, the author had a clear speculation about the 13th amendment through combining diverse sources to reveal the slavery was abolished during Lincolns’ regime. She provides findings about the way women suffered but due to the ratification of the 13th amendment, slavery reduced. Moreover, the paper evaluates the new light between slavery and freedom during the time of slave abolition. The paradox of the amendment is clarified and the justification of potent symbolism of the bondage of women is clearly evaluated thus, making the issue of the author comprehensible.

The author uses one source over other sources creating bias. This is because some of the methodologies employed are prejudicial and contradicts the information previously provided. This makes the information appear unclear and the topic presented difficult to understand. Moreover, it makes the reader create negative attitudes towards reading the article or may cause the reader to have doubts about the findings of the issue. Thus, I would improve the article especially where it has weaknesses such as the use of an ambiguous picture. This is because the picture may confuse the reader when they try to arrange them in a way that will make sense to them as well as enjoy. Additionally, I will reduce the use of the single source to avoid causing biasness of the information as well as avoid confusing the reader.


Stanley, Amy Dru, 2010, “Instead of Waiting for the Thirteenth Amendment: The War Power,

Slave Marriage, and Inviolate Human Rights”. The American Historical Review, 115 (3): 732-765.

[1] Stanley, Amy Dru. 2010. “Instead of Waiting for the Thirteenth Amendment: The War Power,

Slave Marriage and Inviolate Human Rights”. The American Historical Review. 115 (3): 732-765.


[2] Stanley, Amy Dru. 2010. “Instead of Waiting for the Thirteenth Amendment: The War Power,

Slave Marriage, and Inviolate Human Rights”. The American Historical Review. 115 (3): 732-765.


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