Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #frederickdouglass

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ARCHIVE THREAD: Well you know I love to dig in Archives, so having the chance to review the papers of Justice Brandeis and Justice John Marshall Harlan, both housed at the @uofllawlib was planned as a feature of my visit to @LouisvilleLaw. Archivist Scott Campbell was my sherpa.
There were wonderful documents Mr. Campbell found from the Brandeis papers that I had hoped to find for my book. But I want to share an excerpt of one document from Harlan’s papers that had me in tears. A letter that Frederick Douglass wrote to Justice Harlan, to thank Harlan,
for his dissent in the Civil Rights Cases in which the majority held that the 13th & 14th amends do not outlaw private discrimination -a key and devastating decision that helped usher in the end of Reconstruction. His words praising Justice Harlan ring for today.
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#OTD in 1852 Frederick Douglass recited "What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?" before the Rochester Ladies' Anti-Slavery Society at Corinthian Hall. Douglass attacked slavery by highlighting how white Americans could celebrate freedom while enslaving others.
Douglass referenced the Bible, Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution to argue that as long as slavery existed that Independence Day would be a day of mourning for African Americans, especially the enslaved.
He proclaimed "...justice, liberty, prosperity and independence, bequeathed by your fathers, is shared by you, not by me. The sunlight that brought light and healing to you, has brought stripes and death to me. This Fourth July is yours, not mine. You may rejoice, I must mourn.”
Read 6 tweets
“The American resistance placed a great deal of emphasis on property rights, but marriage laws prevented most married women from enjoying property rights.”… #July4 #IndependenceDay #womenshistory 1/
#womenshistory: “In a letter dated March 31, 1776, Abigail Adams writes to her husband, John Adams, urging him and the other members of the Continental Congress not to forget about the nation’s women when fighting for #America’s #independence.”… 2/ Image
#WomensHistory: “I desire you would Remember the Ladies.” -Letter from Abigail Adams to John Adams, 31 March #1776…
“We know better than to repeal our Masculine systems.” -Letter from John Adams to Abigail Adams, 14 April 1776… 3/ ImageImage
Read 15 tweets
Struck just now by this "Deep Nostalgia" tech, which algorithmically animates photos. My colleague @Afromanticist has used it with this photo of #FrederickDouglass. It is amazing. And also terrifying. My first book was about haunting as praxis in Black lifeworlds, so thoughts +
My book is about memory & loss in AfAm life, and it ends with a consideration of Beloved coupled w/ James Van Der Zee's Harlem Book of the Dead (work that structured my pivot into #BlackDH). I'm also thinking now about @toniasutherland's writing on postmortem holograms of Tupac +
In this case Deep Nostalgia works by mapping an image onto a set of templated movements. The image is algorithmically re-mastered (*shuddersincontext*) around those movements, like any computer-generated animation. Of course much of the terror is generated by the fact that +
Read 23 tweets
Like many who were enslaved when they were born, #FrederickDouglass did not know his birthdate. He adopted February 14th as his birthday. He remains among the most brilliant, fierce, eloquent, prescient Black leaders and American patriots in our history. Heed his words. 1/
In January 1865 Douglass gave a speech “What the Black Man Wants” in which he pressed for the right to vote. Among the reasons:
“I believe that when the tall heads of this Rebellion shall have been swept down...& blotted out, there will be this rank undergrowth.....” 2/
“...of treason... interfering with the quiet operation of the Federal Govt in those States. You will see traitors handing down, from sire to son, the same malignant spirit which they have manifested & which they are now exhibiting....with broad blades & bloody hands....” 3/
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1/ Four years ago I wrote on #BlackLivesMatter by putting its ideals into conversation with our greatest thinkers: #IdaBWells #MartinLutherKingJr
#FrederickDouglass #AnnaJuliaCooper #AudreLorde #JamesBaldwin #Langston Hughes #ZoraNealeHurston…
2/ My ambition was to honor our cherished tradition of black intellectual work and approach the movement by putting its ideals into conversation with some of our greatest thinkers and writers
3/ Chapter 1 sets the stage with Douglass and Wells grappling with what it means for blacks to find a meaningful place in a young #democratic nation founded on #4racialbondage and murder
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TONIGHT at 5 PM PDT, Pulitzer Prize winner David W. Blight will interview fellow historian @william_sturkey, winner of Zócalo’s 10th annual Book Prize for “Hattiesburg: An American City in Black and White.”

Here’s a look back at the last time Blight visited Zócalo.

In an event titled “What Does the Life of Frederick Douglass Tell Us About America?”, Blight discussed his biography of #FrederickDouglass with author/comedian Baratunde Thurston.

@Baratunde pointed out that the tension between patriotism and not-patriotism is a theme repeated through leadership across generations. “Love America or damn America … How do you understand [Douglass’s] holding of that space?” he asked @davidwblight.

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I’m going to rant 4 a minute to respond to this fellow-citizen who’s been told that the parties switched sides.

It’s not true. The switched sides thing is a gross mischaracterization.
In summary: Unfortunately, some Republicans (R.)don’t care about black people. But at least we don’t actively exploit them like Democratic (D.)party does.

Let’s start with the voter suppression thing:
True, you can probably find examples of R’s trying to manipulate laws to improve their chances at the polls, but D’s do that too: why you think D’s are so excited abt importing illegal immigrants? — Political Power.
Read 41 tweets
“Under these, and innumerable other disadvantages, your fathers declared for liberty and independence and triumphed.”
“Fellow Citizens, I am not wanting in respect for the fathers of this republic. The signers of the Declaration of Independence were brave men.”
“They were great men too — great enough to give fame to a great age. It does not often happen to a nation to raise, at one time, such a number of truly great men.”
Read 13 tweets
@jnlamstudies Forum, “#Shakespeare and #Black America” before the 2020 print publication if you have access to the
@CambridgeCore platform. Just in time for our #RaceB4Race discussions on appropriation! Buckle up--Tweetstorm a' comin' #LitPOC #MedievalTwitter
2/ These essays are short and, not just accessible, but actually enjoyable (IMHO). I’m always tweeting stuff for you to check out, but this time you don’t have to listen to just me. (Although y'all most def should listen to me) + #ShakeRace #RaceB4Race #LitPOC
3/ Look at this referee comment. Now you KNOW you need to read these if you are interested in #appropriation #pedagogy #theater #Activism #archives #BlackHistory! Thanks generous and insightful reviewer!! #ShakeRace #RaceB4Race #LitPOC #ShaxCultApp
Read 21 tweets
In 1860 an anti-Constitution abolitionist argued—
“On the 27th of September, Mr. Butler and Mr. Pinckney, two delegates from the State of South Carolina, moved that the Constitution should require that fugitive slaves and servants...”
“...should be delivered up like criminals, and after a discussion on the subject, the clause, as it stands in the Constitution, was adopted.”
But #FrederickDouglass said that the lecturer misrepresented the facts behind that clause in the Constitution. FD said—
“These illustrious kidnappers were told promptly in that discussion that no such idea as property in man should be admitted into the Constitution....”
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“I think [people] make a great mistake in saying so much of race and color. I know no such basis for the claims of justice....In this race-way they put the emphasis in the wrong place.”
— Frederick Douglass
“I do now and always have attached more importance to manhood than to mere kinship or identity with any variety of the human family. RACE, in the popular sense, is narrow; humanity is broad. The one is special; the other is universal. The one is transient; the other permanent.”
“In the essential dignity of man as man, I find all necessary incentives and aspirations to a useful and noble life. Man is broad enough and high enough as a platform for you and me and all of us.”
Read 27 tweets
Instead of just partying on the #4thofJuly , why not learn some more about your the #USA for example James Earl Jones reading #FrederickDouglass' What to the American Slave is the #FourthOfJuly ? via @democracynow
Or for at least a little while during the #4thofJuly cookout play an episode or two of the @PeabodyAwards winning @uncivilshow #podcast, the untold #history of the #AmericanCivilWar by @catchatweetdown & @JackHitt via @Gimletmedia
Read 6 tweets
In the final moments of President’s Day, I want to excerpt the words of Frederick Douglass from his 38 page speech about the assasination of Abraham Lincoln which I read at the @librarycongress in December. I held the original manuscript written in Douglas’ own hand:
“The fact is the people in the very depths of their souls loved Abraham Lincoln. They knew him, and knew him as one brother knows another, and they loved him as one brother lives another. He was not only the President of the country, but a member of each loyal family....
...The very picture of his plain American face was loved, as the picture of a dear relation...the American ppl saw in him, a full length portrait of themselves....
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The best part of this week were the hours I spent with my friend ⁦@LibnOfCongress⁩. For two and a half hours she allowed me to review original documents written in longhand by my hero, the great #FrederickDouglass.
Allison Cannon from the Manuscript Division of the @librarycongress provided wonderful context as we read Douglass’ letter to his son from his visit to Egypt.
I could barely breathe as I read from Douglass’ eulogy for Abraham Lincoln. Righteous anger, deep grief, and a searing, trenchant, and still relevant analysis of racism in America. #FrederickDouglass @librarycongress
Read 5 tweets

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