Books Recommended for Teachers
The Life Experience and Gospel Labors of the Right Reverend Richard Allen
. Nashville: Abingdon Press,  1960.
Narrative of Richard Allen, founding Bishop of the A.M.E. Church.
Fifty Years in Chains; Or The Life Of An American Slave
. New York: H. Dayton, 1858.
Narrative of Charles Ball.
Narrative of the Life and Adventures of Henry Bibb, An American Slave, Written by Himself
. New York: Negro Universities Press,  1969.
Narrative of Henry Bibb.
Blassingame, John W. ed.
Slave Testimony: Two Centuries of Letters, Speeches, Interviews and Autobiographies
. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1977.
A large collection of primary sources relating to the slave experience in the United States including slave narratives.
Bontemps, Arna, ed.
Five Black Lives
. Middletown: Wesleyan University Press, 1971.
A collection of narratives written by ex-slaves who lived in Connecticut: Venture Smith, James Mars, William Grimes, Rev. G. W. Offley, and James L. Smith.
Bontemps, Arna, ed.
Great Slave Narratives.
Boston: Beacon Press, 1969.
A collection of the narratives of Olaudah Equiano, James Pennington, and William and Ellen Craft.
Botkin, B. A., ed.
Lay My Burden Down: A Folk History of Slavery
. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1945.
A selection of excerpts and several complete narratives from the WPA Slave Narrative Collection.
Brown, Henry Box.
Narrative of the Life of Henry Box Brown, Written by Himself
. Philadelphia: Rhistoric Publishers  1969.
Narrative of Henry Box Brown.
Davis, Charles T. and Henry L. Gates, Jr., eds.
The Slave’s Narrative.
New York: Oxford University Press, 1985.
A comprehensive collection of critical and analytical essays and reviews of the slave narrative literature by several authors.
My Bondage and My Freedom
. New York: Arno,  1968.
Narrative of Douglass’ life up to 1850s.
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, Written by Himself
. Garden City: Doubleday  1963.
Douglass’ first narrative; considered the best of the slave narrative genre.
Egypt, Ophelia Settle et al., eds.
Unwritten History of Slavery: Autobiographical Accounts of Negro Ex-Slaves
. Nashville: Social Science Institute, 1945.
A collection of slave interviews made by Fisk University in the 1920s.
. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1959.
A controversial study of slavery which argues that American slavery was so psychologically repressive that blacks were reduced to fawning, dependent, childlike “Sambos.”
Escott, Paul D.
Slavery Remembered: A Record of Twentieth-Century Slave Narratives
. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1979.
An analysis of the slave experience based on the WPA and Fisk University slave narratives.
Genovese, Eugene D.
Roll, Jordon, Roll: The World The Slaves Made
. New York: Pantheon Books, 1974.
An analysis of the American slave experience.
The Black Family in Slavery and Freedom, 1750-1925
. New York: Pantheon Books, 1976.
An important study of African American family and cultural development.
Truth Stranger Than Fiction, Father Henson’s Story of His Own Life
. Chicago: Afro-American Press,  1970.
Narrative of Josiah Henson.
Hurmence, Belinda, ed.
My Folks Don’t Want Me to Talk About Slavery
. Winston-Salem: John F. Blair, 1984.
A selection of 21 interviews of former North Carolina slaves from the WPA Slave Narrative Collection.
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl
. Detroit: Negro History Press,  1969.
Narrative of Linda Brent.
Katz, William L., ed.
Five Slave Narratives
. New York: Arno Press, 1969.
A collection of narratives by Lunceford Lane, James Pennington, William Wells Brown, Jacob Stroyer and Moses Granby.
Killion, Ronald and Charles Waller, eds.
Slavery Time When I Was Chillun Down On Marster’s Plantation: Interviews with Georgia Slaves.
Savannah: The Beehive Press, 1973.
A collection of WPA interviews of former slaves from Georgia.
The Narrative of Lunceford Lane, Formerly of Raleigh, N. C.
New York: Arno Press,  1968.
Narrative of Lunceford Lane.
Levine, Lawrence W.
Black Culture and Black Consciousness
. New York: Oxford University Press, 1977.
An important study which uses slave narratives to analyze the cultural and religious life of Afro-Americans.
Loguen, Jermain W.
The Rev. J. W. Loguen, As A Slave and As A Freeman: A narrative of Real Life
. New York: Negro Universities Press,  1968.
Narrative of J. W. Loguen.
Nichols, Charles H., ed.
Many Thousand Gone: The Ex-Slaves’ Account Of Their Bondage and Freedom.
Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1963.
An important study of slavery which relies heavily on slave narratives.
Twelve Years A Slave
. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press,  1968.
Narrative of a free black who was kidnapped and sold into slavery for twelve years.
Osofsky, Gilbert, ed.
Puttin’ On Ole Massa
. New York: Harper and Rowe, 1969.
An anthology of narratives by Henry Bibb, William Wells Brown and Solomon Northup.
Owens, Leslie Howard.
This Species of Property
. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976.
An analysis of antebellum slave life and culture.
Phillips, Ulrich B.
American Negro Slavery.
New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1918.
A classic study of slavery which portrays slavery as an essentially benign institution that conferred many benefits upon a backward race.
Rawick, George P., ed.
The American Slave: A Composite Autobiography
, 31 vols. Westport: Greenwood Press, 1972-78.
A multi-volume compilation of all known WPA slave narratives, including two volumes of Fisk University interviews of ex-slaves and an interpretive essay on slave life by the editor.
The Roving Editor: or, Talks with Slaves in the Southern States
. New York: Negro Universities Press,  1969.
Interviews with slaves prior to the Civil War made by a northern journalist.
The Peculiar Institution
. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1956.
A study which depicts slavery as a primarily harsh, repressive system for the exploitation of cheap labor.
Starling, Marion Wilson.
The Slave Narrative: Its Place in American Literary History
. Doctoral thesis, New York University, 1946.
An important history and analysis of the slave narrative literature.
Starobin, Robert S., ed.
Blacks in Bondage: Letters of American Slaves.
New York: New Viewpoints, 1974.
A collection of letters written by slaves.
Stern, Sheldon M.
The Black Response To Enslavement: Reinterpretations of the Behavior and Personality of American Slaves
. Washington: University Press of America, 1976.
An anthology of sections of nineteenth century and WPA slave narratives with an interpretive essay by the author.
The Life of John Thompson, A Fugitive Slave.
New York: Negro Universities Press,  1968.
Narrative of John Thompson.
Narrative of Sojourner Truth
. Boston, 1850. Narrative of Sojourner Truth.
Unger, Irwin and David Reimer.
The Slavery Experience in the United States.
New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1970.
An anthology of articles on the slave experience.
Winks, Robin W. et al., eds.
Four Fugitive Slave Narratives.
Reading: Addison-Wesley Publishing Co., 1969.
Narratives of William Wells Brown, Josiah Henson, Austin Steward, and Benjamin Drew.
WPA. Federal Writers Project.
The Negro in Virginia.
New York: Arno Press,  1969.
Selections from the Virginia narratives of the WPA Slave Narrative Collection.
Yetman, Norman R., ed.
Voices From Slavery
. New York: Holt, Rhinehart and Winston, 1970.
A collection of 100 complete narratives from the WPA Slave Narrative Collection.