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Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass


Study Questions & Essay Topics

Suggestions for Further Reading

1. Why does Douglass have no knowledge of his birth date?

2. What is Douglass’s probable father’s name?

3. Why do children of a slave-owning father and slave mother have the worst lot of the slaves?

4. What event does Douglass connect with his introduction to the horrors of slavery?

5. What do Colonel Lloyd’s slaves call the plantation on which Douglass grows up?

6. Which of the following is not what Douglass interprets slave songs to be?

7. Which of the following is not one of the overseers under whom Douglass grows up?

8. What is Douglass’s main point about Gore shooting Demby?

9. Which of the following is not a reason Douglass is happy about the prospect of moving to Baltimore?

10. What is the reason for Sophia Auld’s transformation?

11. Why is Douglass grateful that Hugh Auld orders Douglass’s reading lessons stopped?

12. Why does Douglass believe that city slaveholders are usually less cruel than rural slaveholders?

13. Which of the following is not one of Douglass’s sources for learning how to read and write?

14. What does Douglass gain from The Columbian Orator?

15. From what source does Douglass learn the meaning of “abolition”?

16. Why does Douglass move from Baltimore to Thomas Auld’s?

17. What is Thomas Auld’s main offense as a slaveholder?

18. Why do the slaves call Covey “the snake”?

19. In what regard is Douglass’s August confrontation with Covey a turning point?

20. What service does Douglass offer his fellow slaves at William Freeland’s?

21. What happens to Douglass and the others when their escape plan is betrayed?

22. Why do Douglass’s fellow apprentices at the Baltimore shipyard attack him?

23. How does Douglass get enough money to escape?

24. Who helps Douglass in New York City?

25. Why is Douglass surprised by New Bedford?

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Common Core State Standards (CCSS)

by Mr_Cafaro, April 04, 2013

The title Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass is suggested by the CCSS Initiative as an Exemplar Text for middle school.


9 out of 16 people found this helpful

Book Review for teens

by MirandaP97, August 19, 2013

Yes, I am a teen myself, and if you HAVE to read this, then do so, but if you don't have to, then don't read is incredibly boring...I had to read it for my English class...horrible book...unless you like narratives...then to you...ENJOY!!! It is hard to understand in some parts, but if you have ever read Fahrenheit 451, then it's about that bad...


8 out of 71 people found this helpful

Actually a good book

by BellaTheGod, November 20, 2013

No doubt, I thought it was gonna be super boring and I was gonna hate it, but to the contrary, I actually REALLY liked it. It's something I can read, and it doesn't take too long to read either. If you actually like history, and like to read about the stuff you won't find in a textbook, then this narrative is worthwhile.


such Douglass

much history


7 out of 10 people found this helpful

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