The Christian Science Monitor

'Frederick Douglass' provides authoritative context for an important American life

How does one write the life story of a person who demonstrated his greatness through writing his own life story? Namely, "Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, Written by Himself (1845)," which he composed at age 27 and which “made him in time the most famous black person in the world.” Douglass followed up with the revised and extended autobiographies "My Bondage and My Freedom" (1855) and "Life and Times of Frederick Douglass (1881/1892)."

It’s hard to imagine a biographer more knowledgeable about Douglass’s life, times and writings than David W. Blight, who indeed knows so very much that

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