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Publisher's Summary

In the 1930s, the Works Progress Administration commissioned an oral history of the remaining former slaves. Bullwhip Days is a remarkable compendium of selections from these extraordinary interviews, providing an unflinching portrait of the world of government-sanctioned slavery of Africans in America. Here are 29 full narrations, as well as nine sections of excerpts related to particular aspects of slave life, from religion to plantation life to the Reconstruction era. Skillfully edited, these chronicles bear eloquent witness to the trials of slaves in America, reveal the wide range of conditions of human bondage, and provide sobering insight into the roots of racism in today's society.

©1988 James Mellon. Recorded by arrangement with Grove Atlantic, Inc. (P)2017 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about Bullwhip Days

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Excellent

this book is a must-read very informative the performance makes you feel like you're sitting there during the interview yourself very lifelike

4 people found this helpful

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Excellent!

Every young and old, people of color, need to read or listen to Bullwhip Days. Most Blacks today would like to forget about the slavery days and move on. They want to forget about how they came into religion and that today they are still praying to the same god that oppressed them. They want to forget about the scraps they were giving to eat and today they call it soul food. Generation after generation we continued to eat our soul food which lead to high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. This book I would recommend to everyone. Each century, I most say we get smarter and start questioning everything we’re told.

2 people found this helpful

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Excellent!

This is a must listen for perspective. The evil of slavery is obvious. There are interesting stories and much wisdom from these voices. I found it interesting how little they thought of the younger generation and schooling in general. We may scoff, but there is truth in what these wise people felt. It's also telling how some of the slave masters were nice and kind while many others took pleasure in torture. I feel like I Know much more about this generation from hearing this. It's hard to listen to at times, but if you want to think in depth about the evils of slavery, you will listen! The narration is superb!

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This is a must read for anyone who seeks truth

I learned more about human nature listening to this book than I ever imagined. Highly recommended.

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Sad stories from our ancestors

The narrators were awesome, but it is sad that we still have black peoples with the same mentality today.

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Critically Important U.S. History Book

Wow, just wow. The concept of this book is based on the 1937/38 project by the WPA (New Deal) which assigned unemployed writers and journalists to conduct interviews with the still-living American citizens who were actually slaves. This was amazing foresight. The former slaves who were interviewed were in their 80s and 90s with a handful at the century mark. I had attempted to read the book previously but the interviewers faithfully recorded the former slaves words as spoken. These former slaves, through no fault of their own, were deprived of educational opportunities and, as a result, their interviews are difficult to decipher for the modern reader. Enter the audio version of the book. It is magnificent!! The two narrators, Brad Sanders and Janina Edwards, are stunning in their performance. They give each of the former slaves a unique voice and personality. I often forgot it wasn't the actual former slave talking. Our society owes a debt of gratitude to Mr. Sanders and Ms. Edwards for deciphering difficult idioms and slang to present it to us as the interviewees stated. Also we owe a debt of gratitude to the book's author, James Mellon, for bringing this history to modern day readers.. This is the most powerful and impactful book to me that I've read outside the Bible. I cried and laughed at the memories of these precious souls but the tears far outweighed the laughter. Every American should read or listen to this book and resolve as a society that the abominable institution of slavery will never happen in our country again. Also for we white conservative southerners who sometimes wax poetic and romantic about the "Old South", this book reminds us that there was nothing romantic nor defensible about our slave owning ancestors nor the caste system created by slavery. I recommend this book highly to every American.