A Library of America Paperback Classic
Frederick Douglass was a key figure in helping to secure the abolition of slavery in America – discover his Narrative on the 150th anniversary of that event.
‘A masterpiece … [Douglass] was not only self-educated, with a love of language which should still be an inspiration; he was also self-created’ New York Times
Frederick Douglass was born into slavery in Maryland in 1818. After his escape in 1838 he became an ardent abolitionist, and his autobiography was an instant bestseller upon publication in 1845. In it he describes with harrowing honesty his life as a slave – the cruelty he suffered at the hands of plantation owners; his struggles to educate himself in a world where slaves are deliberately kept ignorant; and ultimately, his fight for his right to freedom. A passionately written, intelligent and highly emotive indictment of slavery, his principle preoccupation was that slavery could be eradicated only through education. This text was key in helping to secure its eventual abolition.
“Slavery, color, racism and the struggle for equal rights all come together in the Douglass story...a declaration of freedom by a runaway slave that became a powerful antislavery tract”
New York Times
“Frederick Douglass has been hailed as one of history's most inspirational leaders and is a personal hero of Barack Obama who called him "the father of the civil rights movement"”
“His life retains an emblematic glow transcending its biographical ingredients”