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  • Published: 7 June 2005
  • ISBN: 9780451529947
  • Imprint: Signet
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 160
  • RRP: $7.99
Categories:

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass



Frederick Douglass's dramatic autobiographical account of his early life as a slave in America.

Born into a life of bondage, Frederick Douglass secretly taught himself to read and write. It was a crime punishable by death, but it resulted in one of the most eloquent indictments of slavery ever recorded. His gripping narrative takes us into the fields, cabins, and manors of pre-Civil War plantations in the South and reveals the daily terrors he suffered as a slave. Written more than a century and a half ago by an African-American who went on to become a famous orator, U.S. minister to Haiti, and leader of his people, this timeless classic still speaks directly to our age. It is a record of savagery and inhumanity that goes far to explain why America still suffers from the great injustices of the past. With an Introduction by Peter J. Gomes and an Afterword by Gregory Stephens

  • Published: 7 June 2005
  • ISBN: 9780451529947
  • Imprint: Signet
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 160
  • RRP: $7.99
Categories:

About the author

Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass was born Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey to a slave woman and an unknown white man in either 1817 or 1818. He was enslaved in Baltimore and Maryland for twenty years, first as a servant and then as a farm hand. He escaped in 1838, married, and settled in Massachusetts where he began work as an anti-slavery crusader. Following a fantastically eloquent speech at an anti-slavery convention he was hired by the Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Society to lecture about his life as a slave. He was such a brilliantly gifted public speaker that many doubted he had ever been a slave, and this stereotype – that a slave couldn’t be intelligent or articulate – was something he fought ardently against. He wrote his autobiography partly to address this – it became an instant bestseller on publication. After the outbreak of the civil war he successfully persuaded President Lincoln to allow black soldiers to enlist. He was, at various times, Federal Marshall of the District of Columbia, President of the Freedman’s Bank, United States Minister to Haiti, and charge d’affaires for the Dominican Republic. He died in 1895 shortly after delivering a speech at a women’s rights rally.

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Praise for Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass

“This narrative contains many affecting incidents, many passages of great eloquence and power…Who can read [it], and be insensible to its pathos and sublimity?”—William Lloyd Garrison “He experienced…the tyranny and circumscription of an ambitious human being who was classified as real estate.”—W.E.B. DuBois

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