Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, Written by Himself - Study Guide Preface Summary & Analysis

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This preface, being one of two prefaces to this piece, was written in 1845 by William Lloyd Garrison, a well-known abolitionist. Mr. Garrison was best known for publishing an anti-slavery newspaper called The Liberator from 1831 to 1865, before, during and after the Civil War. In this preface, Mr. Garrison describes a speech he heard at an anti-slavery convention he attended in August of 1841, four years earlier, in Nantucket, Massachusetts. The speech was given by an escaped slave by the name of Frederick Douglass, who wrote a narrative of his life as a slave, which follows this preface. Garrison describes the emotions that were provoked among the crowd at the convention by Douglass's speeches, including Garrison's own hatred of slavery which was stirred by seeing Douglass and realizing what slavery has done to him.

Garrison goes on to describe the demeanor of Douglass as he spoke at the convention, as...

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