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Publisher's Summary

Harriet Jacobs’ autobiography, written under the pseudonym Linda Brent, details her experiences as a slave in North Carolina, her escape to freedom in the north, and her ensuing struggles to free her children. The narrative was partly serialized in the New York Tribune, but was discontinued because Jacobs’ depictions of the sexual abuse of female slaves were considered too shocking. It was published in book form in 1861.
©1861 Public Domain (P)2012 Cherry Hill Publishing
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Critic Reviews

"In such volumes as this, the true romance of American life and history is to be found. Patient suffering, heroic daring, untiring zeal, perseverance seemingly unparalleled, and growth from surroundings of degradation and ignorance to education, refinement, and power: all find in these modest pages their simple, yet affecting narrative. It is the "oft told tale" of American slavery, in another and more revolting phase than that which is generally seen. More revolting because it is of the spirit and not the flesh. In this volume, a woman tells in words of fire, yet never overstepping the bounds of the truest purity, not, how she was scourged and maimed, but that far more terrible sufferings endured by and inflicted upon woman, by a system which legalizes concubinage, and offers a premium to licentiousness. No one can read these pages without a feeling of horror, and a stronger determination arising in them to tear down the cursed system which makes such records possible. Wrath, the fiery messenger which goes flaming from the roused soul and overthrows in its divine fury the accursed tyrannies of earth; will find in these pages new fuel for the fire, and new force for the storm which shall overthrow and sweep from existence American slavery." ( Weekly Anglo-African, New York, N.Y., 13 April 1861)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Shakayla on 03-31-13

Great book!

If you could sum up Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl in three words, what would they be?

Interesting, insightful, disturbing.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl?

When the narrator describes the slave woman who is tied up by her thumbs and whipped to death.

Have you listened to any of Audio Élan’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No I haven't. I didn't find her narration very interesting. It actually hurt the story rather than helped it. Eventually I finished the audio book but not without a struggle as I found her voice to be very annoying.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The entire book moved me.

Any additional comments?

Great read! Wish the narrator was different. But I loved the story nonetheless.

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful


By Amazon Customer on 10-02-15

The story redeems the narration

Harriet Jacobs first hand account of her life as a slave is unforgettable. She showed a tremendous amount of courage and refused to be "broken in" by her oppressors. With remarkable determination she fights for her and children's freedom.

My only complaint is the narration. The forced southern drawl made me sick. The delects were all over the place. One moment she made the main character sound like a proper English lady, then she sounded like a white southerner. The other slaves sounded like they were from the islands and so on. Once I overcame the nauseating sound of her voice, I was able to focus on the story. I would definitely recommend it.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By Amazon Customer on 04-26-15

tear jerking. words cannot describe

merely a century. and some ago.unbelievable to think this was how life was expectedly existed

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful


By Annie on 04-07-16

An Insightful Account Of A Cruel Way Of Life.

This book was excellent and well read, I learnt lots here that I had not known.
Told in an interesting, yet informative way. If you have any interest about the lives of slaves, try it.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Colleen Kelly on 01-12-18

INCREDIBLE! BRILLIANT!

If you could sum up Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl in three words, what would they be?

INCREDIBLE - BRILLIANT - SAD

What did you like best about this story?

It is true

Which scene did you most enjoy?

None of the scenes are enjoyable - that's the point - to show you REALITY.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

OH YES! And I've listened twice.

Any additional comments?

Should be MANDATORY listening (and I believe it's suitable for) every high school child in the USA!

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