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John Brown by [W. E. B. Du Bois]

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John Brown Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 264 ratings

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Editorial Reviews


"This set represents an invaluable assembly of the works of the pioneering African American scholar, activist, and creative genius....The introductions to the individual volumes are written by such distinguished scholars as to make those writings indispensable treasures in their own right. Recommended for all public libraries and essential for every academic institution."--Library Journal (starred review)

"This set is a valuable contribution to African-American scholarship. It has the potential to introduce a new readership to the scope and breadth of a unique and seminal thinker. The works included can provide a more comprehensive understanding of the issues now facing contemporary Americans....[A] breathtaking collection."--School Library Journal

"The general introduction and the introductions to each of Du Bois's works form a valuable opus in their own right, as they convey the author's political and social theories and indicate the richness and development of his ideas....The realities of slavery, racism, and segregation in the United States are always at the forefront, making these works (many of them out-of-print) continually pertinent and forceful reading....This set will be an essential addition to public and college libraries."--Reference and Research Book News

"This set will be vital to all large university libraries with collections in African American history and American literature." --American Reference Books Annual

--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

From the Inside Flap

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 stretched forth his arm ... the clash of arms was at hand." DuBois's biography brings Brown stirringly to life and is a neglected classic.
--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B00FVE9X0I
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Publishing (January 1, 2013)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ January 1, 2013
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 1721 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 188 pages
  • Page numbers source ISBN ‏ : ‎ B08NVVWCCC
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.7 out of 5 stars 264 ratings

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William Edward Burghardt “W. E. B.” Du Bois was an American sociologist, historian, civil rights activist, Pan-Africanist, author, and editor. Born in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, Du Bois grew up in a relatively tolerant and integrated community.

Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
264 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on December 11, 2018
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4.0 out of 5 stars Du Bois on Brown -- a crucial, unique perspective
By Autonomeus on December 11, 2018
I recently read Russell Banks's brilliant, powerful historical novel "Cloudsplitter," which tells the story of John Brown from the first-person perspective of his son Owen. I became curious about which details in Banks's fictional account were changed from the actual history. This led me to the current volume. I did not realize that W.E.B. Du Bois had written a book about Brown, so for me it was doubly rewarding as a biography of John Brown, and as an important book by the great African-American sociologist, historian, and activist.

It is not nearly as gripping a read as the novel. Du Bois utilizes lots of long quotes from letters by Brown and from other sources. The introduction, by historian David Roediger, is an excellent addition to the 2001 Modern Library Edition. The book was originally published in 1909, and Roediger provides the context, which includes Du Bois's rivalry with Oswald Garrison Villard, who also wrote a biography of Brown. Villard waged an unscrupulous campaign against Du Bois, writing a damaging review of the book.

To the point of the novel and its modifications of the historical record, the main substantive difference seems to be the extensive section on Brown's participation in the Underground Railroad while based in North Elba, New York, in the Adirondacks near the Canadian border. It makes sense that there would be little documentation of this activity, and that Banks would have to interpolate and create fictional details to flesh out the story. The two portions of the Du Bois biography that stood out as different from the novel were 1) a longer and more extensive chronology of events in Kansas, where Brown and his sons played an important role in the guerilla war against the pro-slavery forces, and 2) the documented network of Browns' associates and supporters in the Abolitionist movement, including in Canada, which are mentioned, but not emphasized as much in the novel.

Du Bois defends the basic soundness of the military plan for the raid on the armory at Harper's Ferry, arguing that it might well have succeeded if certain mistakes had been avoided. He also argues powerfully and eloquently for the importance of Brown's legacy for the struggle for racial justice.

I recommend the book, but it is not the definitive biography or history. Next, I plan to read [[ASIN:0870234587 To Purge This Land with Blood]] by Oates (1971), which seems to be the leading contender for that honor.
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Reviewed in the United States on December 23, 2019
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Reviewed in the United States on November 5, 2020
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1.0 out of 5 stars Just received second copy today, Ink faded in both.
By T Harris on November 5, 2020
1st copy Ink faded in book unable to read it. I spent money for the Scholar Select hard cover. I need this replaced asap!

2nd copy just received today 11/13/2020. Ink is also faded in this one as well. I thought if I paid more for the Scholar Select the quality would be the Best, I guess not. Don't see why they are shopping these and the ink is faded. A person cannot read the book.
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6 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on November 23, 2020
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Reviewed in the United States on May 2, 2014
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Reviewed in the United States on May 12, 2021
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Reviewed in the United States on February 10, 2021
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Reviewed in the United States on June 19, 2019
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Top reviews from other countries

Laura maclean
5.0 out of 5 stars Can’t wait to read
Reviewed in Canada on June 3, 2020
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