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Northup, Solomon Twelve Years a Slave

ISBN 13: 9781492368281

Twelve Years a Slave

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9781492368281: Twelve Years a Slave
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Twelve Years a Slave by Solomon Northup is a memoir of a black man who was born free in New York state but kidnapped, sold into slavery and kept in bondage for 12 years in Louisiana before the American Civil War. He provided details of slave markets in Washington, DC, as well as describing at length cotton cultivation on major plantations in Louisiana.

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Review:

"A moving, vital testament to one of slavery's 'many thousands gone' who retained his humanity in the bowels of degradation. It is also a chilling insight into the 'peculiar institution.'" --"Saturday Review"
"For sheer drama, few accounts of slavery match Solomon Northup's tale of abduction from freedom and forcible enslavement." --Ira Berlin, from the Introduction

"When I read ["Twelve Years a Slave"] for the first time, it was like the first time I read Anne Frank's diary. And I wondered to myself, 'Why isn't this book on everyone's bookshelf.' . . . For me, it's a classic. It should be in every school." --Steve McQueen, director of the film adaptation of "Twelve Years a Slave, "in "Entertainment Weekly"

"Frightening, gripping and inspiring . . . Northup's story seems almost biblical, structured as it is as a descent and resurrection narrative of a protagonist who, like Christ, was 33 at the time of his abduction. . . . Northup reminds us of the fragile nature of freedom in any human society and the harsh reality that whatever legal boundaries existed between so-called free states and slave states in 1841, no black man, woman or child was permanently safe." "--Henry Louis Gates, Jr., "The Root""

"A moving, vital testament to one of slavery's 'many thousands gone' who retained his humanity in the bowels of degradation. It is also a chilling insight into the 'peculiar institution.'" --"Saturday Review"

"I could not believe that I had never heard of this book. It felt as important as Anne Frank's "Diary, " only published nearly a hundred years before. . . . The book blew [my] mind: the epic range, the details, the adventure, the horror, and the humanity. . . . I hope my film can play a part in drawing attention to this important book of courage. Solomon's bravery and life deserve nothing less." --Steve McQueen, director of "12 Years a Slave, "from the Foreword
"Frightening, gripping and inspiring . . . Northup's story seems almost biblical, structured as it is as a descent and resurrection narrative of a protagonist who, like Christ, was 33 at the time of his abduction. . . . Northup reminds us of the fragile nature of freedom in any human society and the harsh reality that whatever legal boundaries existed between so-called free states and slave states in 1841, no black man, woman or child was permanently safe." --Henry Louis Gates, Jr., "from the Afterword"
"For sheer drama, few accounts of slavery match Solomon Northup's tale of abduction from freedom and forcible enslavement." --Ira Berlin, from the Introduction
"If you think the movie offers a terrible-enough portrait of slavery, please, do read the book. . . . The film is stupendous art, but it owes much to a priceless piece of document. Solomon Northup's memoir is history. . . . His was not simply an extraordinary story, but an account of the life of a great many ordinary people." --"The Daily Beast"
"An incredible document, amazingly told and structured. Tough, but riveting. The movie of it by Steve McQueen might be the most successful adaptation of a book ever undertaken; text and film complement each other wildly." --Rachel Kushner, "The New York Times Book Review"
"The best firsthand account of slavery." --James M. McPherson, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of "Battle Cry of Freedom, "in "The New York Times Book Review"
"Northup published a memoir of his 12-year nightmare in 1853, the year after "Uncle Tom's Cabin "came out, and it was so successful that he went on to participate in two stage adaptations. The book dropped from sight in the 20th century, but the movie tie-in will certainly reestablish its virtually unique status as a work by an educated free man who managed to return from slavery." --"The Hollywood Reporter"

I could not believe that I had never heard of this book. It felt as important as Anne Frank s Diary, only published nearly a hundred years before. . . . The book blew [my] mind: the epic range, the details, the adventure, the horror, and the humanity. . . . I hope my film can play a part in drawing attention to this important book of courage.Solomon s bravery and life deserve nothing less. Steve McQueen, director of 12 Years a Slave, from the Foreword
Frightening, gripping and inspiring . . . Northup s story seems almost biblical, structured as it is as a descent and resurrection narrative of a protagonist who, like Christ, was 33 at the time of his abduction. . . . Northup reminds us of the fragile nature of freedom in any human society and the harsh reality that whatever legal boundaries existed between so-called free states and slave states in 1841, no black man, woman or child was permanently safe. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., from the Afterword
For sheer drama, few accounts of slavery match Solomon Northup s tale of abduction from freedom and forcible enslavement. Ira Berlin, from the Introduction
If you think the movie offers a terrible-enough portrait of slavery, please, do read the book. . . . The film is stupendous art, but it owes much to a priceless piece of document. Solomon Northup s memoir is history. . . . His was not simply an extraordinary story, but an account of the life of a great many ordinary people. The Daily Beast
An incredible document, amazingly told and structured. Tough, but riveting. The movie of it by Steve McQueen might be the most successful adaptation of a book ever undertaken; text and film complement each other wildly. Rachel Kushner, The New York Times Book Review
The best firsthand account of slavery. James M. McPherson, Pulitzer Prize winning author of Battle Cry of Freedom, in The New York Times Book Review
Northup published a memoir of his 12-year nightmare in 1853, the year after Uncle Tom s Cabin came out, and it was so successful that he went on to participate in two stage adaptations. The book dropped from sight in the 20th century, but the movie tie-in will certainly reestablish its virtually unique status as a work by an educated free man who managed to return from slavery. The Hollywood Reporter"

About the Author:

Solomon Northup (July 10, 1807, or 1808–1863?) was an American abolitionist and the primary author of the memoir Twelve Years a Slave. A free-born African American from New York, he was the son of a freed slave and free woman of color. A farmer and professional violinist, Northup had been a landowner in Hebron, New York. In 1841, he was offered a traveling musician's job and went to Washington, D.C. (where slavery was legal); there he was drugged, kidnapped, and sold as a slave. He was shipped to New Orleans, purchased by a planter, and held as a slave for 12 years in the Red River region of Louisiana, mostly in Avoyelles Parish. He remained in slavery until he met a Canadian working on his plantation who helped get word to New York, where state law provided aid to free New York citizens kidnapped into slavery. Family and friends enlisted the aid of the Governor of New York, Washington Hunt, and Northup regained his freedom on January 3, 1853.

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