Visit Website After he was separated from his mother as an infant, Douglass lived for a time with his maternal grandmother. However, at the age of six, he was moved away from her to live and work on the Wye House plantation in Maryland. From there, he taught himself to read and write.
Chapters 1—4[ edit ] Douglass begins by explaining that he does not know the date of his birth he later chose February 14,and that his mother died when he was 7 years old.
He has very few memories of her children were commonly separated from their mothersonly of the rare nighttime visit. He thinks his father is a white man, possibly his owner.
At a very early age he sees his Aunt Hester being whipped. Douglass details the cruel interaction that occurs between slaves and slaveholders, as well as how slaves are supposed to behave in the presence of their masters, and even when Douglass says that fear is what kept many slaves where they were, when they tell the truth they are punished by their owners.
Chapters 5—7[ edit ] Frontispiece of Douglass from the first edition At this point in the Narrative, Douglass is moved to BaltimoreMaryland. This move is rather important for him because he believes that if he had not been moved, he would have remained a slave his entire life.
He even starts to have hope for a better life in the future. He also discusses his new mistress, Mrs. Sophia Auld, who begins as a very kind woman but eventually turns cruel.
Douglass learns the alphabet and how to spell small words from this woman, but her husband, Mr. Auld, disapproves, and states that if slaves could read, they would not be fit to be slaves, being unmanageable and sad. Upon hearing why Mr. Auld disapproves of slaves being taught how to read, Douglass realizes the importance of reading and the possibilities that this skill could help him.
He takes it upon himself to learn how to read and learn all he can, but at times, this new found skill torments him. Douglass then gains an understanding of the word abolition and develops the idea to run away to the North. He also learns how to write and how to read well. Chapters 8—9[ edit ] At the age of ten or eleven, Douglass's master dies and his life to be divided between his son and daughter.
The slaves are valued along with the livestockcausing Douglass to develop a new hatred of slavery. He feels lucky when he is sent back to Baltimore to live with the family of Master Hugh. He is then moved through a few more situations before he is sent to St.
His regret at not having attempted to run away is evident, but on his voyage he makes a mental note that he traveled in the North-Easterly direction and considers this information to be of extreme importance.
For some time, he lives with Master Thomas Auld who is particularly cruel, even after attending a Methodist camp. He is pleased when he eventually is lent to Mr. Covey for a year, simply because he would be fed. Covey is known as a "negro-breaker", who breaks the will of slaves.
Chapters 10—11[ edit ] While under the control of Mr. Covey, Frederick Douglass bites Covey's hand and has an especially hard time at the tasks required of him. He is harshly whipped almost on a weekly basis, apparently due to his awkwardness.
He is worked and beaten to exhaustion, which finally causes him to collapse one day while working in the fields. Because of this, he is brutally beaten once more by Covey. Douglass eventually complains to Thomas Auld, who subsequently sends him back to Covey. A few days later, Covey attempts to tie up Douglass, but he fights back.
After a two-hour long physical battle, Douglass ultimately conquers Covey. After this fight, he is never beaten again.Frederick Douglass' narrative is one of the earliest pieces of writing by a slave. His narrative is both accurate and a inspiring portrayal of slave life.
About Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave. A new Vintage Classics edition of the abolitionist leader’s classic autobiography. This dramatic autobiography of the early life of an American slave was first published in , when its young author had just achieved his freedom.
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave Written By Himself [Frederick Douglass, Gerald Fulkerson, John W. Blassingame, John R. McKivigan, Peter P. Hinks] on initiativeblog.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers.
Frederick Douglass's autobiography, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass. Upon its publication in , Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, Written by Himself became an immediate best-seller.
Feb 01, · There is scarcely a finer example of the power of education than Frederick Douglass. To celebrate the th birthday of one of American history’s most important thinkers, we .
Oct 27, · Watch video · Frederick Douglass was an escaped slave who became a prominent activist, author and public speaker. He became a leader in the abolitionist movement, which sought to end the practice of slavery.