Regular price: $37.79

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free.
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price.
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love.
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel.
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month.
  • Get access to the Member Daily Deal
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

The definitive, dramatic biography of the most important African American of the 19th century: Frederick Douglass, the escaped slave who became the greatest orator of his day and one of the leading abolitionists and writers of the era.

As a young man, Frederick Douglass (1818-1895) escaped from slavery in Baltimore, Maryland. He was fortunate to have been taught to read by his slave owner mistress, and he would go on to become one of the major literary figures of his time. He wrote three versions of his autobiography over the course of his lifetime and published his own newspaper. His very existence gave the lie to slave owners: with dignity and great intelligence, he bore witness to the brutality of slavery. 

Initially mentored by William Lloyd Garrison, Douglass spoke widely, often to large crowds, using his own story to condemn slavery. He broke with Garrison to become a political abolitionist, a Republican, and eventually a Lincoln supporter. By the Civil War and during Reconstruction, Douglass became the most famed and widely traveled orator in the nation. He denounced the premature end of Reconstruction and the emerging Jim Crow era. In his unique and eloquent voice, written and spoken, Douglass was a fierce critic of the US as well as a radical patriot. He sometimes argued politically with younger African Americans, but he never forsook either the Republican party or the cause of black civil and political rights. 

In this remarkable biography, David Blight has drawn on new information held in a private collection that few other historian have consulted, as well as recently discovered issues of Douglass’ newspapers. Blight tells the fascinating story of Douglass’ two marriages and his complex extended family. Douglass was not only an astonishing man of words, but a thinker steeped in Biblical story and theology. There has not been a major biography of Douglass in a quarter century. David Blight’s Frederick Douglass affords this important American the distinguished biography he deserves.

©2018 David W. Blight (P)2018 Simon & Schuster

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    27
  • 4 Stars
    8
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    0

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    31
  • 4 Stars
    5
  • 3 Stars
    2
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    0

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    26
  • 4 Stars
    10
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    0
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent Biography

I have not previously read any biographies of Frederick Douglass. I was aware of him from other history books or biographies. But this is an excellent biography.

I was aware of David Blight from the podcast of one of his Yale history courses but I have not read another one of his books. This was very well written and well researched. I am looking forward to reading it again in a couple years after I read some of Douglass' autobiographies directly.

Douglass is a fascinating figure.

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Best Book and Reading!

Gotta Love this Reader and the Story of Frederick Douglass. I could mot put it down, falling asleep a few times and rewinding to the last page I could remember. I will surely keep this top of list to read every now and then. Amen.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great!

This books shows an incredible man and his family life in a thought provoking way.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

A great American who really had an impact on USA

Truly an amazing man who helped shape history and change minds and policy when he could. The readers soft voice took me a while to warm up to but the story kept me very interested in Frederick Douglass. The author would have done a better job if he could have left his personal political biases out of the book. Mr Blight seems to go out of his way to criticize one party's short comings while not even really discussing the other party more in passing or an off comment remark. This is still a must read though but needs to be followed up with additional reading on the time from other authors.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • JB
  • Nebraska
  • 11-10-18

The Best of Everything Audible

Let’s face it, some history doesn’t fit the audio format well. FD’s story is tailor made for it. When told by a great author like Mr. Blight and so wonderfully narrated, the combination is sublime.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Rick
  • Overland Park, KS, United States
  • 12-01-18

richer for the enlightenment herein

great narrator.
take away 1: lynchings continued because so many stayed silent. such a brave and gifted man swam upstream his whole life.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

WHAT YOU DON'T KNOW

Frederick Douglass was a great American. He missed the significance of women's rights but he clearly experienced, understood, and fought against the iniquity of inequality.