A moving cultural biography of abolitionist martyr John Brown, by one of the most important African-American intellectuals of the twentieth century.
In the history of slavery and its legacy, John Brown looms large as a hero whose deeds partly precipitated the Civil War. As Frederick Douglass wrote: "When John Brown…
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1 author picked John Brown as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?
First published in 1909, this succinct biography by a leading Black author and reformer spearheaded a tradition of appreciative commentary on Brown by African Americans. Brushing aside longstanding critiques of John Brown as a fiend, a fanatic, and a traitor, Du Bois explores the depth of Brown’s antislavery commitment and his willingness to sacrifice his own life in order to bring about the emancipation of Amerca’s 4 million enslaved people. Du Bois makes the memorable generalization: “John Brown was right.”
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