Tuesday, November 13, 2007
David Blight's A SLAVE NO MORE is a November “Significant 7” title on Amazon!
From Amazon's Significant Seven
Spotlight Title: A SLAVE NO MORE by David Blight
Most Americans have learned about the history of slavery and emancipation in the United States through a haphazard combination of grade-school textbooks, Hollywood films, and one of the most-watched TV miniseries of all time. Of the more than four million enslaved before the Civil War, only a handful of their first-person narratives have survived. Needless to say, the rediscovery of two narratives of self-emancipation is both a major historic and a literary event. In A Slave No More, esteemed historian David Blight has faithfully transcribed the unique manuscripts of John Washington (1838-1918) and Wallace Turnage (1846-1916), which were both recently brought to light from family archives. Washington and Turnage's accounts of their early lives in bondage and daring flights to freedom--through the chaotic Union army lines and perilous Alabama swamps respectively--are nothing less than riveting. In their capacity to express their authors' profound humanity in the face of the worst brutality, their words rise off the page as resilient and relevant as when they were first written. Blight devotes the first half of the book to four short essays in which he masterfully reconstructs the men's biographies and larger family histories, taking great care to bring the detail and drama of their individual lives into focus against the larger canvas of American history. But to feel the full impact of Washington and Turnage's stories, readers are urged to begin with their own words on page 162 before returning to Blight's excellent histories. --Lauren
For the other Amazon Significant Seven Books, please click here.