A Douglass Day Reading List

Happy Douglass Day 2024!

From DouglassDay.org: Although Frederick Douglass (born circa 1817/1818-died February 20, 1895) never knew his birth date, he chose to celebrate every year on February 14th. We mark this day with a collective action that serves & celebrates Black history.

The following UNC Press titles celebrate the incredible accomplishments of Frederick Douglass.

Frederick Douglass
America's Prophet
By D. H. Dilbeck

Frederick Douglass: America’s Prophet by D. H. Dilbeck

“Offers a religiously oriented study—not a conventional biography—of Frederick Douglass, emphasizing the pervasive importance of Christianity in his life and thought . . . Compact and attractively written.”—Journal of American History

The Colored Conventions Movement
Black Organizing in the Nineteenth Century
Edited by P. Gabrielle Foreman, Jim Casey, Sarah Lynn Patterson

The Colored Conventions Movement: Black Organizing in the Nineteenth Century
edited by P. Gabrielle Foreman, Jim Casey, and Sarah Lynn Patterson

“Through these essays, the editors masterfully portray the CCP’s aim to realize the linkages of Black intellectual work and social activism that the conventions represented, individually and sequentially, in the 19th century. . . . A must for all students, researchers, and general readers with an interest in Black lives, this essential overview of the CCP’s legacy offers fresh understanding of the history of organized Black activism and commitment to community efforts for equal rights. Highest recommendation.”—Library Journal, starred review

The Mind of Frederick Douglass
By Waldo E. Martin Jr.

The Mind of Frederick Douglass by Waldo E. Martin Jr.

“Martin succeeds in covering all major aspects of the ‘mind’ and persona that Douglass presented to the world. He is particularly good on Douglass’s cultivation of the image of himself as hero, self-made man, and exemplar of the American success myth.”—New York Review of Books 

Frederick Douglass and Herman Melville
Essays in Relation
Edited by Robert S. Levine, Samuel Otter

Frederick Douglass and Herman Melville: Essays in Relation
edited by Robert S. Levine and Samuel Otter

“This volume is an example of the most important work being done in American literary studies today. The essays–many of them by high-profile Americanists–work against simple veneration of Douglass and Melville, instead offering incisive and much-needed commentary on the larger debates, tensions, and opportunities within which both authors worked.”—Caroline Levander, Rice University