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This essay investigates the literature on racism and slavery in America. It establishes the progress that has been noted since President Abraham Lincoln declared an end to slavery in 1865. Besides, it outlines the challenges that had faced blacks before this historical pronouncement. According to history, the declaration heralded a moment of hope for the blacks, in belief that things would change drastically. However, this was not to happen considering that real sense of equality is yet to be realized two centuries later (Hodges 42).
The fundamental change that has been realized, since 1865 is the cessation of slavery. Indeed, it has been a rare opportunity for African-Americans to struggle for living a life of freedom where they can define their own destiny. Thus, the era when they could be auctioned or sold out as the domestic workers is dead. However, this has resulted in a drastic change in the characteristics that they are associated with. For instance, blacks are usually regarded as bitter and violent so that they can do anything to get out of the poverty cycle. However, there are several positive changes that have been recorded by this population, especially with regards to music and general social awareness. Undoubtedly, African-Americans have opted to use more positive language in their music compositions with common references to money and cars dominating the compositions. Besides, this group of people has progressively become more proactive in seeking quality healthcare (Hodges 111).
This has been a complete break from what used to happen at the end of 1800. According to history, this period marked the dark moment in the history of African-Americans when blacks unsuccessfully tried to move north. The Great Migration had been triggered by the fact that blacks felt it was time to flee from the life of tenant farming, unskilled laborers and poor sharecroppers. However, things turned worse in the north too, with housing conditions and employment problems being quite prominent. In addition, racial segregation rose to levels that couldn’t be tolerated. This presented the blacks with two choices, either to accommodate the whites or to confront the injustices (Hodges 132).
In conclusion, the declaration of an end of slave trade has heralded a new dawn to African-Americans. Although the progress has been slow, some steps definitely have been made especially on the political front. No wonder, everyone celebrates President Barack Obama’s tenure as the first black president of the United States.