Penguin Enriched Ebook Classics Celebrates Black History Month With Narrative Of The Life Of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave

February 9, 2009

Penguin Enriched eBook Classics Features:

  • Chronology
  • Nineteenth-Century Book Reviews and Responses
  • Further Reading
  • Day in a Slave’s Life
  • Sorrow Songs and Sheet Music
  • The Church and Prejudice (1841)
  • The Meaning of the Fourth of July for the Negro (1853)
  • The Heroic Slave (1853)
  • My Escape from Slavery (1881)
  • Douglass Sites to Visit in the United States
  • Portraits and Illustrations
  • Enriched eBook Notes

Narrative Of The Life Of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave was an incredibly influential piece of literature in the anti-slavery movement. Now in time for Black History month and the bicentennial year of Abraham Lincoln's birth, Penguin will release the Penguin Enriched eBook Classics edition on February 10, 2009. Houston Baker and Derrick R. Spires are the Enriched eBook Features editors. It will be priced at $10.

Narrative Of The Life Of Frederick Douglass powerfully details the life of the famous abolitionist and orator Frederick Douglass from his birth into slavery in 1818 to his escape to the North in 1838. It is generally held to be the most famous of a number of slave narratives written during that same period and credited with being one of the most influential pieces of literature to fuel the abolitionist movement of the early nineteenth century in the United States. In eleven chapters Douglass recounts his life as a slave and his ambition to become a free man. Originally published in 1845, within four months of publication, five thousand copies were sold and by 1860, almost thirty thousand copies were sold.

A prominent book review critic of the era had a very positive opinion of Douglass's work, claiming, "we have never read [a narrative] more simple, true, coherent, and warm with genuine feeling." And continued, "every one may read his book and see what a mind might have been stifled with bondage—what a man might be subjected to the insults of spendthrift dandies, or the blows of mercenary brutes, in whom there is no whiteness except of the skin, no humanity in the outward form..."


For more information, contact:
Maureen Donnelly,