|By (author):||Blight, David W.|
|Subject:||BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Historical|
|HISTORY / African American|
|HISTORY / General|
|HISTORY / United States / 19th Century|
|NON-FICTION / General|
|Publisher:||Simon & Schuster|
|Size:||9.25in x 6.25in x 1.80in|
|From The Publisher*||A TIME TOP 10 BOOK OF THE YEAR|
The definitive, dramatic biography of the most important African American of the nineteenth century: Frederick Douglass, the escaped slave who became the greatest orator of his day and one of the leading abolitionists and writers of the era.
As a young man Frederick Douglass (1818-1895) escaped from slavery in Baltimore, Maryland. He was fortunate to have been taught to read by his slave owner mistress, and he would go on to become one of the major literary figures of his time. He wrote three versions of his autobiography over the course of his lifetime and published his own newspaper. His very existence gave the lie to slave owners: with dignity and great intelligence he bore witness to the brutality of slavery.
Initially mentored by William Lloyd Garrison, Douglass spoke widely, often to large crowds, using his own story to condemn slavery. He broke with Garrison to become a political abolitionist, a Republican, and eventually a Lincoln supporter. By the Civil War and during Reconstruction, Douglass became the most famed and widely travelled orator in the nation. He denounced the premature end of Reconstruction and the emerging Jim Crow era. In his unique and eloquent voice, written and spoken, Douglass was a fierce critic of the United States as well as a radical patriot. He sometimes argued politically with younger African-Americans, but he never forsook either the Republican party or the cause of black civil and political rights.
In this remarkable biography, David Blight has drawn on new information held in a private collection that few other historian have consulted, as well as recently discovered issues of Douglass's newspapers. Blight tells the fascinating story of Douglass's two marriages and his complex extended family. Douglass was not only an astonishing man of words, but a thinker steeped in Biblical story and theology. There has not been a major biography of Douglass in a quarter century. David Blight's Frederick Douglass affords this important American the distinguished biography he deserves.
|Review Quote*||"Cinematic and deeply engaging. . . . a tour de force of storytelling."|
|Review Quote*||"Absorbing and even moving . . . Mr. Blight displays his lifelong interest in Douglass on almost every page, and his own voice is active and eloquent throughout the narrative. It is a book that speaks to our own time as well as Douglass's. . . . A brilliant book."|
|Review Quote*||"The first major biography of Douglass in nearly three decades. . . . Blight isn't looking to overturn our understanding of Douglass, whose courage and achievements were unequivocal, but to complicate it - a measure by which this ambitious and empathetic biography resoundingly succeeds."|
|Review Quote*||"Extraordinary. . . . Blight has certainly written, in the book's texture and density and narrative flow-one violent and provocative incident arriving right after another-a great American biography."|
|Review Quote*||"A consistently engrossing book that is likely to remain the definitive account of Douglass's life for many years to come."|
|Review Quote*||"A stunning achievement. Blight captures an icon in full humanity. From riveting drama in slavery and Civil War, his Douglass rises into clairvoyant genius on the blinkered centrality of race in our struggle for freedom."|
|Review Quote*||"David Blight has written the definitive biography of Frederick Douglass. With extraordinary detail he illuminates the complexities of Douglass's life and career and paints a powerful portrait of one of the most important American voices of the 19th century. . . . The resulting chronicle enriches our understanding of Douglass and the challenges he faced and offers a lesson for our own troubled times. . . . Magisterial."|
|Review Quote*||"David Blight's incandescent Frederick Douglass is a monumental achievement of biographical empathy, historical context, and grim comprehensiveness, a much-awaited masterpiece of a life that emblematized slavery as the problem of the 19th century, as was race that of Du Bois's 20th, the legacy of both the problem of our 21st century."|
|Review Quote*||"Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom is a triumph-elegantly written, with much new material about one of the most famous and important men in modern history. David Blight has created a vibrant and convincing portrait of a towering figure who was also, Blight says, ‘thoroughly and beautifully human.' A great American gets the stellar biography he deserves from one our country's greatest historians."|