Image - Writing the Life of Frederick Douglass

Past Event

My Voice, My Pen, My Vote: Writing the Life of Frederick Douglass

To celebrate the 200th anniversary of his birth, David Blight has written a new, comprehensive biography of Frederick Douglass, who was an escaped slave, a leading abolitionist and political activist, and one of the greatest orators and writers of his generation. Prize-winning historian Blight has drawn on letters and papers in a private collection that no other historian has consulted. He also relied on recently discovered copies of Douglass’ newspapers to bring us new insights into Douglass’ life and legacy.

Blight portrays a man who was both courageous and generous, but he also reveals that Douglass did not take well to rivals challenging his position as the greatest spokesman of his race (all the while mentoring younger black writers and leaders). Blight traces how Douglass traversed a crooked path from radical outsider to political insider and digs deep into the mental life of this multifaceted intellectual, editor and writer of short-form editorials, extended speeches and sermons, a memoir, and even one work of fiction.

MLF Organizer
George Hammond

MLF: Humanities

October 22, 2018

The Commonwealth Club
110 The Embarcadero
Toni Rembe Rock Auditorium
San Francisco, 94105
United States

Image - Blight

David Blight

Professor of American History and Director of the Gilder Lehrman, Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition at Yale University; Author, Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom


11:30 a.m. check-in
noon program
1 p.m. book signing