Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale
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Selected by the Modern Library as one of the 100 best nonfiction books of all time

In Up from Slavery, Washington recounts the story of his life—from slave to educator. The early sections deal with his upbringing as a slave and his efforts to get an education. Washington details his transition from student to teacher, and outlines his own development as an educator and founder of the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama. In the final chapters of Up From Slavery, Washington describes his career as a public speaker and civil rights activist.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

About the Author

Booker T. Washington (1856-1915) was born a slave on a Virginia farm. Later freed, he headed and developed the Tuskegee Institute and became a leader in education. Widely considered a spokesman for his people, he emphasized social concern in three books as well as his autobiography.

Louis R. Harlan
, born in Clay County, Mississippi, in 1922, is Professor of History at the University of Maryland, College Park. He is the author of Separate and Unequal (University of North Carolina Press, 1958) and of a two-volume biography of Booker T. Washington (Oxford University Press, 1972, 1983). He is the editor, with Raymond W. Smock, of The Booker T. Washington Papers (13 vols., University of Illinois Press, 1972-84). He has been awarded the Beveridge Prize, Bancroft Prize, and Pulitzer Prize for his biography of Washington.

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4.8 out of 54.8 out of 5
2,870 global ratings

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Top reviews from the United States

Johnny Utah
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
This should be required reading
Reviewed in the United States on October 14, 2019
I grew up in Virginia. We learned a lot about the early colonists, the revolutionary war, and the civil war, but I never learned about Booker T. Washington. I''m glad I stumbled upon this book by accident a few weeks ago. It was eye-opening to say the least. To be... See more
I grew up in Virginia. We learned a lot about the early colonists, the revolutionary war, and the civil war, but I never learned about Booker T. Washington.

I''m glad I stumbled upon this book by accident a few weeks ago. It was eye-opening to say the least. To be able to read something written by a former slave is incredible. So much of history is written by observers after the fact. This book is written by a participant.

Booker T. Washington writes with incredible clarity. It''s easy to read his narrative, which moves quickly and covers many years and many historic moments from slavery and reconstruction, to the foundation for the civil rights movement.

This book is chalked full of incredible quotes and ideas. Booker provides ample fuel for anyone who needs some gas in their tank to be optimistic, hard-working, or altruistic. Top off your reserves with this book and get a look at some critical moments of American history, told from a perspective that is unique and credible.
75 people found this helpful
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Dezzi Jacks
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Great book.
Reviewed in the United States on February 13, 2021
I just wanted to say that the book is not difficult to read unless you’re not good at understanding language in general. Another reviewer gave an unsatisfactory review because the language “was too hard to understand” so she had to exchange it for a different... See more
I just wanted to say that the book is not difficult to read unless you’re not good at understanding language in general.
Another reviewer gave an unsatisfactory review because the language “was too hard to understand” so she had to exchange it for a different version.
I personally don’t mind the older language used because that keeps you enveloped in the story and it’s happenings. I’d rather read a biography that hasn’t been rewritten 20 times over because there is always risk of taking away from the power and point of what the person was trying to express. There also risk of people forgetting how language was spoken back then; just as the Bible has lost many of its humble beginnings through hundreds of rewrites, that may happen to important biographies written by black people and their allies before and after slavery.
32 people found this helpful
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Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
I have found that the happiest people do the most for others!
Reviewed in the United States on November 1, 2017
I was going to give this book 4 stars on account of the words are small. However the content is so BIG that I had to give it 5 stars! The man walked 500 miles to get to school and devoted his life to that of service. It just goes to show that we can truly overcome whatever... See more
I was going to give this book 4 stars on account of the words are small. However the content is so BIG that I had to give it 5 stars! The man walked 500 miles to get to school and devoted his life to that of service. It just goes to show that we can truly overcome whatever obstacles are in our way if we have the endurance to walk to 500 miles. (figuratively in 2017) Let his story be an inspiration to us all. He worked to bridge the gap and not blame anyone or anything for his place in life. He rose above and we should all be inspired to do the same!
48 people found this helpful
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A reader
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Powerful, moving, instructive, humbling
Reviewed in the United States on April 2, 2019
It is common to compare Booker T. Washington unfavorably to other African American leaders or thinkers of his time or even of our own. I believe this book will help correct this. Washington, a former slave, was trying to redeem a poorly educated community and to free it... See more
It is common to compare Booker T. Washington unfavorably to other African American leaders or thinkers of his time or even of our own. I believe this book will help correct this. Washington, a former slave, was trying to redeem a poorly educated community and to free it from the mindset resulting from centuries of slavery and mistreatment. He wanted above all to inculcate a sense of self-reliance and a new work ethic in former slaves understandably averse to work. To this effect, he founded the Tuskegee Institute (now Tuskegee University), which provided vocational training, rather than intellectual training. Washington was severely criticized for this, and for the "Atlanta Compromise" speech to a white audience in 1895 (With an open hand: "In all matters that are purely social, we can be as separate as the fingers." With a clenched fist: "Yet one as a hand when it comes to mutual progress.") .

Yes, we feel uncomfortable when we think about any limitation in the path of African Americans to economic progress and leading an unrestricted life. But Booker T. Washington was above all realistic, and this memoir shows the kind of obstacles he had to overcome. Thanks to his efforts, supported by such philanthropists as Julius Rosenwald (of Sears Roebuck) and others, a very large number of African Americans had access to a dignified livelihood. As a result of such initiatives, African Americans managed, just a few decades after the end of slavery, in spite of the Jim Crow legislation in place, in spite of lynchings, in spite of a whole system rigged against them, to move little by little up the social ladder, take advantage of manpower needs in fast-growing Northern industries, and enrich American culture in the arts, music, literature and other areas beyond all expectations.

Even the Tuskegee Institute evolved over the years and decades. George Washington Carver, one of the greatest scientists in the history of the United States (and also a former slave) taught there for almost half a century.

Even as he tried to improve the lot of African Americans, even as he tried to push them hard to do their best at all times, Washington never failed to remind white America of the enormous difficulties his "coloured brethren" had to overcome. A short excerpt from this book should prove the point:

"The world should not pass judgment upon the Negro, and especially the Negro youth, too quickly or too harshly. The Negro boy has obstacles, discouragements, and temptations to battle with that are little known to those not situated as he is. When a white boy undertakes a task, it is taken for granted that he will succeed. On the other hand, people are usually surprised if the Negro boy does not fail. In a word, the Negro youth starts out with the presumption against him.

"The influence of ancestry, however, is important in helping forward any individual or race, if too much reliance is not placed upon it. Those who constantly direct attention to the Negro youth''s moral weaknesses, and compare his advancement with that of white youths, do not consider the influence of the memories which cling about the old family homesteads. I have no idea, as I have stated elsewhere, who my grandmother was. I have, or have had, uncles and aunts and cousins, but I have no knowledge as to where most of them are. My case will illustrate that of hundreds of thousands of black people in every part of our country. The very fact that the white boy is conscious that, if he fails in life, he will disgrace the whole family record, extending back through many generations, is of tremendous value in helping him to resist temptations. The fact that the individual has behind and surrounding him proud family history and connection serves as a stimulus to help him to overcome obstacles when striving for success."

In the long view of history, we tend to agree more with W. E. B. Du Bois (a giant in his own right), who thought African Americans had every right to study in classical academic courses instead of vocational, agriculture-oriented programs. But history is made (or takes place, if you will) step by step, and there should be no doubt today that Booker T. Washington made a major, perhaps an unparalleled contribution to the advancement of his race. And for this, we should all, African Americans or not, Americans or not, be profoundly grateful and motivated.

I hope only that the excerpt quoted above, one of the most moving I have ever read about the entire African American experience, will inspire everyone to read this book and learn from Booker T. Washington''s own words.
18 people found this helpful
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JC Davenport
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Looking Up
Reviewed in the United States on March 10, 2015
So here it is 100 years after Booker T. Washington''s death. Here I am finally reading this classic wondering what took me so long to get around to reading it. I''m also wondering what is taking America so long to get over it''s racial prejudices. Our bigotry and cruelty... See more
So here it is 100 years after Booker T. Washington''s death. Here I am finally reading this classic wondering what took me so long to get around to reading it. I''m also wondering what is taking America so long to get over it''s racial prejudices. Our bigotry and cruelty seems to come in waves in this country and right now is not one of our better times for some reason.

Booker was wrong about some things. He was wrong about the KKK being gone for good. He was wrong about his belief in steady progress of race relations. He was also wrong about hard work always being rewarded. But that''s easy for me to see now.

He was right about his faith in the goodness of individual people, people who worked (with an ethic that shames us today), who studied, who served, who taught, who gave six eggs towards the building fund. People who gave money, and people who broke down barriers, thanks to bridge builders like Mr. Washington.

This is an easy reading fairly quick book that was for me compelling and unforgettable. Mr. Washington no doubt anticipated more white people than blacks reading this book (at least initially), for the simple fact that more whites than blacks could read, and afford a book. As a college president (and founder) and by default a racial ambassador, he also nobly and deftly kept the book positive and heaped plenty of praise onto many. I don''t believe he saw the world through rose colored glasses. Plenty of others would criticize our greed, injustice and prejudice. And criticize him too. Booker looked up. Thanks to him a lot more of us can too.
35 people found this helpful
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ChemProf
2.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Great Book! Difficult to read print
Reviewed in the United States on November 17, 2020
In general, I have really enjoyed Kindle books. Among other things, I have enjoyed being able to adjust the font sizes. The one drawback is that the figures, that go along with the text, are generally of mediocre quality at best. I put up with this in exchange for the... See more
In general, I have really enjoyed Kindle books. Among other things, I have enjoyed being able to adjust the font sizes. The one drawback is that the figures, that go along with the text, are generally of mediocre quality at best. I put up with this in exchange for the overall convenience of the Kindle system. This book, "Up from Slavery" is different. It is a great book, well worth five(5) stars! Nevertheless, THE PRINT FORMAT FOR THIS EDITION IS HORRIBLE, thus the two stars. The font size is minscule, in which one literally needs a magifing glass to read it . And, unlike most Kindle books, the font size is not adjustible. I recommend the contents. I do not recommend this edition.
3 people found this helpful
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Gary J. Heffner
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Great advice for all US colleges.
Reviewed in the United States on January 6, 2021
Booker T. Washington''s story is known to some degree, though he is often maligned by the ignorant, but his idea that education should prepare a person for real work in the real world is something every college in the US should strive to achieve. His humble beginnings and... See more
Booker T. Washington''s story is known to some degree, though he is often maligned by the ignorant, but his idea that education should prepare a person for real work in the real world is something every college in the US should strive to achieve. His humble beginnings and refusal to blame the White man or even slavery on his race''s difficulties is the source of his success and criticism by race hustlers past and present. His faith in God sustained him and helped him to forgive. He was a good man. The book bogs down toward the end when he was more focused on the recognitions and honors (all well earned) that he received.
2 people found this helpful
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matthew a. barrett
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Inspiring
Reviewed in the United States on April 14, 2021
An advocate of labor, Booker T. Washington is famed for encouraging progress for blacks through trades opposed to academia. Controversially, he''s also known for capitulating to segregation sympathies in which he receives harsh criticism. Nevertheless, upon reading the... See more
An advocate of labor, Booker T. Washington is famed for encouraging progress for blacks through trades opposed to academia. Controversially, he''s also known for capitulating to segregation sympathies in which he receives harsh criticism. Nevertheless, upon reading the details of his upbringing readers have the opportunity to understand where this logic stemmed from. Washington was a man of labor himself and he sees that success as a blueprint for blacks.

His achievements are inspiring for their time, however he does appear pretentious and arrogant at times. I find it important to contextualize Booker T. as necessary to recognizing the insistence of trade/practical education as a dignified alternative lifestyle opposed to academia. Great book for political discussions concerning problem solving in such trying times.
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Top reviews from other countries

penedawn
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Important piece of history.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 28, 2018
I read this on a website for those who have asphasia. (difficulty reading after a stroke or anyone with reading difficulties) and this was a fascinating read. You hear so much negativity and focus on what white people did to black people that unless you are studying the...See more
I read this on a website for those who have asphasia. (difficulty reading after a stroke or anyone with reading difficulties) and this was a fascinating read. You hear so much negativity and focus on what white people did to black people that unless you are studying the subject we do not realise just how much black and white worked together to resolve the problems had by becoming free. Where many considered they had a home, family and a life and security they suddenly found they had options but no idea how to go about getting them or what it was they should be trying to get and many did not want to change. This well written story was written by someone who started as a poor black young man who could not read but who had determination and belief and with help from other, whte black, poor and rich he made little more than a room into a school and tought basic living, good skills and education and by his and other who helped him find quality of life over the years with strong morals and rules. Refused to accept that having money and acquiring ''things'' was the answer but that learning from the bottom up gave personal pleasure. He educated hundreds and the students built the schools and grew what they ate. He like many similar were amazing people and he and his friends, black, and white, woman and men, educated, poor and rich at one time ensured that he travelled by boat to England where he met Queen Victoria who knew of his work. Read it. It is an important part of history.
4 people found this helpful
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Eve Jane Lucille
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Inspirational Story.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 13, 2013
I found this book inspirational. Firstly, it gives a look at what it was like to be a child around the time of the Civil War, when slavery was about to be abolishes. It gives an incite I had never thought about which is how slaves really felt about their masters – it was...See more
I found this book inspirational. Firstly, it gives a look at what it was like to be a child around the time of the Civil War, when slavery was about to be abolishes. It gives an incite I had never thought about which is how slaves really felt about their masters – it was quite surprising. I found the book well-written and eloquent. I found Washington to be a very likable, noble, and innovative character. I really enjoyed reading about all he had done and achieved around this time. I love books which take you on a journey while teaching you something, so books based on reality of autobiographies or biographies. This book didn’t disappoint in that regard; it taught me a lot about how things were back then whilst also inspiring me with Washington’s antics of making the world a better place. I’ve come to admire this man greatly, and will read some of his other works now! The book is short and I read it in about two days. It was a page Turner and something you can read through easily.
3 people found this helpful
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Shane Edwards
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Nice Read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 28, 2019
Booker T Washington''s autobiography is a great read. One of the great examples of determination in the face of adversity. He embodied change through non-violent means which is remarkable. The book failed to capture and address some of the injustices faced by the Africans at...See more
Booker T Washington''s autobiography is a great read. One of the great examples of determination in the face of adversity. He embodied change through non-violent means which is remarkable. The book failed to capture and address some of the injustices faced by the Africans at the time. The reader is left with the false hope the southern white folk undid the wrongs of the previous century through philanthropy. Mr Washington was accepted and aligned himself neatly in the white society. He undoubtedly paved the way for many Africans today and inspired Mr Marcus Garvey. A pioneer and national hero in the readers view.
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Brawcatz
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Marie
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 1, 2013
I loved this book. Not only did the author describe the period before slavery was abolished, but he went on to describe how he clawed his way out of his situation and through sheer determination made a much better life for himself. I particularly liked the fact that he...See more
I loved this book. Not only did the author describe the period before slavery was abolished, but he went on to describe how he clawed his way out of his situation and through sheer determination made a much better life for himself. I particularly liked the fact that he described the help he received from others including the white population. He does not come across as feeling sorry for himself, although he may have been forgiven for doing so. He made up his mind to better himself and in doing so, he helped others to do the same. He made it clear to them that it would not be easy and if they were prepared to work hard and obey the rules, they could indeed better themselves as he had done. He went on to become a well respected member of society. To say more may spoil the book for those who have not read it but I think it truly deserves the five stars I have given it.
3 people found this helpful
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Blade
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A Good Read and Well Worth Reading.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 1, 2016
At the time this book was written black writers were few. What makes the book so incredible was not the book itself but a self educated slave could have written it and that a former slave could have come out of slavery and educate himself to be a teacher. This is why so...See more
At the time this book was written black writers were few. What makes the book so incredible was not the book itself but a self educated slave could have written it and that a former slave could have come out of slavery and educate himself to be a teacher. This is why so many African-Americans are able to rise to be teachers at many collages and universities in the USA. It is a positive book that shows that hard work and determination can over many obstacles and that education can lead to success in life even for a former slave.
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Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

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Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale

Up from Slavery: high quality An popular Autobiography (Penguin Classics) sale