Customer Reviews for

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass: An American Slave

Average Rating 4.5
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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 10, 2002

    This book impressed me!

    I am Claire Taylor a Literature college student, and this book impressed me. It opened my eyes to the truth of slavery. As Douglass told of his experiences as a child, I could see the depravity of slavery. He stresses in this book that the people who kept slaves used religion to justify slavery, and I agree with him completely, true Christians who based their life on the bible would not have treated their slaved the way they did. The Christian masters were the cruelest using the same bible to justify their actions. These slaves were treated as animals, they were not fed or clothed properly by their masters, and I can¿t get out of my mind the way they fed the children from a trough, and they had no place to sleep. The horses were treated better than they were. Douglass also showed why it was so important for the slaves to remain ignorant, the term ¿Ignorance is bliss¿ truly applies to the ignorant slave. If the slaves could read the bible and saw such things as, ¿The righteous man regardeth the life of his beast; but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.¿ Proverbs 12:10, they would prove their masters cruelty. Even if the Christian slave owners did truly believe they were beasts, they still had no excuse. After learning to read Douglass could no longer be contented as a slave; he read the words of abolitionists as a very young man, and this made his life as a salve intolerable to himself. This book is vivid and brings to the reader empathy for the slaves. Slavery can be an abstract concept, but for people who cannot imagine the evils of slavery, this book fills the gap without expressing it in a gory sense. I did not put this book down until it was finished; I will not say I ¿enjoyed¿ reading it, but it did dominate my thoughts for a considerable time after reading it.

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    Posted May 7, 2012

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    Posted July 17, 2012

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