Academic journal article The Journal of Southern History

Frederick Douglass: A Life in Documents

Academic journal article The Journal of Southern History

Frederick Douglass: A Life in Documents

Article excerpt

Frederick Douglass: A Life in Documents. Edited by L. Diane Barnes. A Nation Divided: Studies in the Civil War Era. (Charlottesville and London: University of Virginia Press, 2013. Pp. xxxiv, 194. Paper, $22.50, ISBN 978-08139-3436-5; cloth, $59.50, ISBN 978-0-8139-3435-8.) Frederick Douglass: A Life in Documents, edited by L. Diane Barnes, provides a well-chosen selection of critical writings, letters, and speeches from Frederick Douglass's long career. Its publication, roughly coinciding with the sesquicentennials of the Emancipation Proclamation, the end of the Civil War, and the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment, could not be better timed to remind readers of the broader civil and political stakes at play a century and a half ago.

Though it is not hard, in this age of e-books and digital archives, to find Douglass's autobiographies or excerpts of his more famous speeches, Barnes has done a fine job of making some lesser-known documents available. Indeed, the selections in this volume provide something for everyone interested in Douglass. …

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