Books: Non-Fiction

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass: An American Slave Written by Himself: A New Critical Edition by Angela Y. Davis

Book — Non-fiction. By Frederick Douglass and essays by Angela Davis. 2009. 254 pages.
The classic biography of Frederick Douglass with an introduction and critical analysis by Angela Davis.

Time Periods: 19th Century
Themes: African American, Slavery and Resistance

9780872865273A masterpiece of African American literature, Frederick Douglass’s “Narrative” is the powerful story of an enslaved youth coming into social and moral consciousness by disobeying his white slavemasters and secretly teaching himself to read. Achieving literacy emboldens Douglass to resist, escape, and ultimately achieve his freedom. After escaping slavery, Douglass became a leader in the anti-slavery and women’s rights movements, a bestselling author, and U.S. diplomat.

In this new critical edition, legendary activist and feminist scholar Angela Davis sheds new light on the legacy of Frederick Douglass. In two philosophical lectures originally delivered at UCLA in autumn 1969, Davis focuses on Douglass’s intellectual and spiritual awakening, and the importance of self-knowledge in achieving freedom from all forms of oppression. With detailed attention to Douglass’s text, she interrogates the legacy of slavery and shares timeless lessons about oppression, resistance, and freedom. And in an extended introductory essay written for this edition, Davis comments on previous editions of the “Narrative” and re-examines Douglass through a contemporary feminist perspective. An important new edition of an American classic.  [Publisher’s description.]

ISBN: 9780872865273 | City Lights

Related Resource
Book Event Recording

Toni Morrison and Angela Davis talking about the book at the New York Public Library on October 27, 2010 in a 2-hour film.