Up from Slavery
by Booker T Washington, 1856-1915
Booker T. Washington's Up From Slavery tells of this man's progression from the subjugated status of a young, ignorant slave to the heights of a dignified, educated and sought after mind among the American and European intelligentsia.
Having grown up as the son of an impoverished but self-respecting slave mother in the atmosphere of slavery in the South, the consciousness of the African-American slave reality and psychology was imbedded in his soul, yet he clearly was able to see his people's way forward to equal opportunity.
After the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation this young boy sets out on a quest to get an education. His excelling drive and passion to learn allude to an internal vision and sense of destiny which later manifest in the establishing and cultivation of an African-American center of education and development known as the Tuskegee Institute, in Alabama.
By re-telling the series of major events of his life, this man demonstrates his determination to reinforce through example to the Negro race the keys to opportunity in America, such as education, self-reliance and hard work. Concurrently, he instructs his students in the accompanying necessity of strong character, forever guiding young Blacks toward becoming effective members to development and civilized society.
Time and time again throughout his autobiography, Mr. Washington shares the greater joy of giving over receiving, revealing through his experience that giving and being "useful" to society are the real secrets to happiness and fulfillment.
No matter the heights of success and fame Booker T Washington reaches he seems to stay true to his people and to the Negro struggle. He claims often to respect Southern whites and promotes amicable relations between whites and blacks, but he never bows or sells himself out or separates himself from his people and their reality.
As a man who lived and worked in the early part of the 20th century, one gets the impression that Booker T Washington is one of the forerunners to Martin Luther King. He was a reputed master of public speaking, and steadily rose to be one of the principle critics of racism and advocates for the rights and advancement of the Black population in America.
Through and through in this autobiography Booker T Washington comes across as an exemplary African-American man, soldier, and human being, exuding many of the principles and characteristics of a Rasta. Up from Slavery
by Booker T WashingtonUp from Slavery
Booker T. Washington, Louis R. Harlan