Born into slavery in the early 1800s, never knowing his father or birth date, Frederick Douglass taught himself to read, defied and eventually escaped his captors, and became a famed orator and writer, a licensed preacher, one of the most influential abolitionists of his time, and the first African-American citizen to hold a high government office. His Narrative both astounds and unsettles the reader with the clarity of his own vision and purpose, the darkness of the system into which he was born, and the blindness of fellow Christians in perpetuating and tolerating a great evil.
This Reading includes an insightful introduction by author Trillia Newbell, and raises questions both timely and historical: how is it that the most outwardly pious slave masters were often the cruelest? How do we come to lose sight of the humanity of our neighbor—and how do those who once were blind learn to see? Narrative provides a powerful and painful caution against false piety and a call for reflection on how we love our neighbor.
We’re confident that this Reading will spark critical conversations on past history to help glean wisdom for today!
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