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Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, Written by Herself

Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, Written by Herself by Harriet Jacobs
By: (1813-1897)

Born in slavery, but being fortunate enough to be owned by a benevolent mistress, her life takes a tragic turn when her parents and her benefactor die. The new heir to the property (and slaves) is a cruel and lewd man who begins to make inappropriate advances to the lovely young slave-girl. In a bid to escape, she becomes entangled in a relationship with a neighboring landowner who promises a better life, and she even has two children. However, things become worse for her when her cruel owner decides to punish her by sending her and her children to a distant cotton plantation to be “broken in.” She plans a devious method of escape and ends up spending seven terrible years locked up in a tiny cramped garret. Relentlessly pursued by her wicked owner, she lives in fear and desperation.

Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl Written by Herself is one of the many slave narratives that emerged out of the terrible and inhuman atrocities committed in the nineteenth century by white Americans. Modern-day readers would find it difficult to believe that such practices existed in the “Land of the Free.” Assisted by abominable laws like the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 endorsed by Congress, slave-owners were allowed to pursue their “property” across the length and breadth of the country.

Though there have been doubts about the authenticity of Incidents in the Life... by scholars who feel the style and content do not seem to synchronize with the attributes that a woman-slave of the period could have, there is no denying the fact that this is a powerful and thought-provoking story. There are many similarities to the more famous Uncle Tom's Cabin, the book that is supposed to have launched the American Civil War.

A very stirring and poignant read for all those who value their freedom today.


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Reviews (Rated: 5 Stars - 8 reviews)

Reviewer: - July 19, 2014
Subject: Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl
I enjoyed this book. Well read.
Reviewer: - June 28, 2014
Subject: Incidents In The life of A Slave Girl
Riveting account of a life beginning in slavery, masterfully related and earnestly read. I couldn't believe how comprehensible and relatable Harriet's story was, or how wise and circumspect the author was at a time when her country was gripped by a fog of irrationality.
Reviewer: - May 30, 2014
Subject: Wow
Great book and to hear this reader you would think she was telling her own story it was so well read.
Reviewer: - May 30, 2014
Subject: Wow
Great book and to hear this reader you would think she was telling her own story it was so well read.
Reviewer: - June 3, 2013
Subject: Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl
So well read that I actually had to remind myself that the reader was not the author.
Reviewer: - January 2, 2013
Subject: Incidents in the life of a slave girl
Remarkable read, really sad account but good ending.
Reviewer: - December 30, 2012
Subject: Insparational
Left me wanting an ounce of Harriet’s determination and courage. To my ancestors, may your struggle never be in vain as I continue my journey.
Reviewer: - November 26, 2012
Subject: Tncidents in the Life of a Slave Girl
Brilliantly related


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