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The Classic Slave Narratives
The Classic Slave Narratives
Author: Olaudah Equiano, Frederick Douglass, Mary Prince, Harriet Jacobs, Henry Louis Gates
By 1944, over six thousand ex-slaves had written moving stories of their captivity, providing a prolific testimony to the horrors of bondage and servitude. Noted scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr. compiles four of the most important "slave narratives" in this seminal volume.
ISBN-13: 9780451627261
ISBN-10: 0451627261
Publication Date: 9/1/1987
Pages: 536
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  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
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4.1 stars, based on 12 ratings
Publisher: Signet
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover
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  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
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2 member(s) found this review helpful.
”. The book is a composite of four stories. The first one played an important part in the history of Great Briton.

Olaudah Equiano was a freed slave who wrote his autobiography in 1789. This exiting best seller filled with astonishing adventures helped the emancipation cause. Mr. Equiano spoke several languages and traveled in several parts of the world as a slave, sailor, merchant, and even a hair dresser. His book did not dwell on the darkness of slavery but was full of hope due to his deep Christian values. I loved his story.

The history of Mary Prince: A West Indian Slave is a brief, poignant tale of suffering and degradation, emblematic of narrators “not telling of themselves alone,” but seeking to tell the world of the plight of an entire race. Prince is a convincing narrator, one who combines a fine sense of metaphor with the compulsion to testify and indict her oppressors. This story was published in 1831. Get your hanky out.

Written in 1861 the Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl is the incredible story of Harriet Jacobs. From her shattering sale to a cruel stranger to a harrowing escape to freedom, this work is an outstanding example of a woman's extraordinary courage. More hankies needed here.

Written in 1845 the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass is perhaps the best known and most widely read of all the slave narratives. Its elegant simplicity, its gripping readability, and its compelling lucidity make it a moving testimony to the facts of human bondage.

I give this book a big 5 stars! It was hard to put down! I feel it is a very important book that everyone should read.

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Important and interesting book.
  • Currently 4.5/5 Stars.
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The practice of enslavement in the Americas is a phenomenon of staggering proportions. It is also one of the most thoroughly documented systems of human rights abuse in history. "The Classic Slave Narratives" brings together four powerful testaments of individuals who survived enslavement in the Americas.


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