Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (Norton Critical Editions)

Registered by abrokenstarr of Reading, Berkshire United Kingdom on 8/31/2005
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10 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by abrokenstarr from Reading, Berkshire United Kingdom on Wednesday, August 31, 2005
This is the tale of Harriet Jacobs, a slave girl in North Carolina, her life there and then her life as a fugitive throughout America. This book also contains letters written by her to newspapers and documentation that shows her as a free woman. There are also essays on the text.

This will be winging its way to AnglersRest soon.

Journal Entry 2 by abrokenstarr from Reading, Berkshire United Kingdom on Wednesday, August 31, 2005
Posted to AnglersRest second class today.

Journal Entry 3 by AnglersRest from Teignmouth, Devon United Kingdom on Friday, September 02, 2005
Thanks abrokenstarr,this book ray arrived today. Looks fascinating

Journal Entry 4 by AnglersRest from Teignmouth, Devon United Kingdom on Sunday, September 11, 2005
I received this book as a ray. I am in the middle of reading it, but thought I would see if anyone else would like to read this fascinating book. Offered as a Book Ray on the Forums.

The review from

From Library Journal
Published in 1861, this was one of the first personal narratives by a slave
and one of the few written by a woman. Jacobs (1813-97) was a slave in North
Carolina and suffered terribly, along with her family, at the hands of a
ruthless owner. She made several failed attempts to escape before
successfully making her way North, though it took years of hiding and slow
progress. Eventually, she was reunited with her children. For all biography
and history collections.

From 500 Great Books by Women; review by Erica Bauermeister
"Slavery is terrible for men, but it is far more terrible for women,"
Harriet Jacobs wrote in 1861. At that time she was an escaped slave living
in the north, but the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850 meant that she could not
longer consider being in the northern states a guarantee of freedom or
safety. Her book is an eloquent recital of the suffering that is slavery.
Families broken apart; promises of freedom made but never kept; whippings,
beatings, and burnings; masters selling their own children- all are
recounted with precise detail and a blazing indignation. Harriet Jacobs'
master started pursuing her when she was fifteen; in disgust she continually
refused and avoided him. Her first attempt at revenge and escape failed: she
became the lover of a local unmarried white man and had several children,
but even then her master refused to sell her. Finally, in desperation, she
ran away and hid in an uninsulated garret, three feet high at its tallest
point with almost no air or light. She stayed there for seven years,
enduring cold, heat, and a crippling lack of movement, always hoping to
catch a glimpse of her children through a crack in the walls as they walked
by on the road below her. At last she had a chance to escape to the North.
Her story is a remarkable testimony to her strength and courage,
and an unrelenting attack upon the institution of slavery

Journal Entry 5 by AnglersRest from Teignmouth, Devon United Kingdom on Sunday, September 11, 2005
Opened this book as an International Book Ray.
To take part please send me a PM.

The order of the list is subject to change based on mailing preferences
and geography

clarrie-rose (UK) - (UK postage)
Drusillamac (UK) - (Int postage via surface)
Hellie (UK)
scotsbookie (UK) - (Int postage via surface)
Xanthe-pup (UK) - (International postage)
TheWhiteLion (UK) - (Post anywhere!)
Kleptokitty (Portugal) - (European Postage)
kizmiaz (Portugal)
Libahunt (Finland)- (international postage)
AngelfireStar (USA) - (US Postage)
squirrel818 (USA) - (US Postage)
wolfprincess (USA) - (US Postage)
jennifer671 (USA)
amberC (Australia) - (Australian postage)
playtheman (Austrlia)
hshah (India) - (Shipping in Asia prefered)

Book Ray Rules (Adapted from psychjo & Kleptokitty)
1) Everybody should leave a journal entry when receiving the book and after the read! Please let us all know what you think about it...
2) Also PM the next person on the list for a mailing address and when that person doesn't answer within 7 days MAX! please PM the one after...
3) Everybody should also try to read the book soon (max - approx one month)
4) You can send the book via surface mail or airmail - that is completely up to you.
5) If you find you don't have the time to read it when it's your turn please PM and I'll move you to a later slot.
6) Any new members joining from now will be added to the end of the Ray
7) The last person on the list (subject to change)is free to do what they wish with the book.

Journal Entry 6 by AnglersRest from Teignmouth, Devon United Kingdom on Wednesday, September 14, 2005
I finished this in the early hours of this morning. I found it to be a very interesting and enjoyable book, but was a "heavy" book and found that I have dipped into it in chunks over the last week or so, but this did not deter from the enjoyment of it. The hardships that Linda endured are amazing, so that she could have freedom, which is everyone's right.

I am now going to send this on its travels with the bookray.
Being sent off to the clarry-rose, at the start of the list list on 15th September.
I hope everyone enjoy's the book.

Journal Entry 7 by BC-08080413432 from London, Greater London United Kingdom on Saturday, September 17, 2005
Received this morning - it looks very interesting - thanks!

Journal Entry 8 by BC-08080413432 from London, Greater London United Kingdom on Tuesday, October 18, 2005
This was a really really interesting read. It seems hard to believe that such things could happen, ever, and especially only 150 years ago, so it's important for people to read books like this. I am glad I read it - I must say it took me a while to work myself up to it but once I got started I found it surprisingly enjoyable, given the subject matter.

Journal Entry 9 by BC-08080413432 from London, Greater London United Kingdom on Monday, November 28, 2005
Posted to drusillamac today.

Journal Entry 10 by Drusillamac from Glasgow, Scotland United Kingdom on Wednesday, November 30, 2005
I caught this book in the post today. I should get round to reading this during the Christmas holidays as I finish classes next week. But I do have lovely exams to prepare for as well. Fun all round!

Thanks to clarrie-rose and AnglersRest for sharing. I'm doing American History next semester so this book should provide some interesting reading.

Journal Entry 11 by Drusillamac from Glasgow, Scotland United Kingdom on Sunday, January 15, 2006
I have finally finished this book. It took me a while to get into it as I had to put it aside to finish a few other rings as well as finishing off coursework.

This was an interesting book to read from a Brit point of view as our part in the slave trade is kept pretty quiet (a large part of the British Empire benefited finacially from the slave trade). Of course, America is somewhat defined today by that part in their history. Like others, I found this book rather heavy going. I think it was a combination of the style and subject matter.

I did try to read the essays on the text but I found myself less interested in them. I was interested in the earlier essays which provided small biographies of Jacobs life after she wrote Incidents.

Off to Hellie when I get an address.

Journal Entry 12 by Drusillamac from Glasgow, Scotland United Kingdom on Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Sent this to Hellie via second class post.

Journal Entry 13 by Hellie from South Shields, Tyne and Wear United Kingdom on Friday, February 03, 2006
Received today - many thanks, had very eventful day, form not being well to attending compltely the wrong course for work this afternoon! Couple of rings ahead of it, will get to it asap!!

13.3.06...sorry peeps, I know it;s taken a while..Im reading it now....just started this evening...will pm scotsbokie so have her address ready...

sorry I know im hopedless. I nevr got reply - most luikely my pm didnt arrive, then life went mad and i kinda forgot...
pming again now.

Found book very interesting, love the Slave history in relation to southern usa. Have a friend in Ms who has family land in kentucky - their slaves were buried with family. wow!

Journal Entry 14 by scotsbookie from Peebles, Scotland United Kingdom on Tuesday, June 27, 2006
Arrived safely this morning. #2 on Mount TBR

Journal Entry 15 by scotsbookie from Peebles, Scotland United Kingdom on Wednesday, July 19, 2006
A very interesting book to read & an important one. From what is said in the introduction & some of the essays I managed to read this is a somewhat unique book too being written from the slave woman's point of view as a opposed to the slave man.

I found it difficult to get in to at first perhaps because it is written in a similar tradition to that of Victorian novels of the time so I had to keep on reminding myself this was fact not fiction. But once I kept this in my mind I found it an easy, if disturbing read. The hardships that Linda endures in order to find what is the right of everyone, freedom, were truly amazing.

Thank you AnglersRest for the chance to read the book. I've PM'd Xanthe-pup for details.

Journal Entry 16 by scotsbookie from Peebles, Scotland United Kingdom on Thursday, July 20, 2006
Popped in the mail this afternoon to Xanthe-pup.

Journal Entry 17 by Xanthe-pup from Cardiff, Wales United Kingdom on Thursday, August 03, 2006
Sorry for not journalling this straight away - it's been on my shelf for a few days. I have started to read it, and will hopefully finish it off next week.

Journal Entry 18 by Xanthe-pup from Cardiff, Wales United Kingdom on Friday, September 01, 2006
I can imagine what a stir this book would have caused when first released. Very honest, shocking account of exactly what life was like for slaves - despite many contempory accounts claiming that they had good lives.

I didn't read much past the end of Harriet Jacob's life story - the letters and reviews didn't really interest me.

Although the language and descriptions are not as graphic as modern books, taking into account this was written over a century ago, and that the author probably wouldn't want to be graphic about her pain and humiliation at the hands of a cruel 'master'- and as this is a description of the rape of an entire race, it is very hard to really take in.

Will be sending on to TheWhiteLion this weekend.

Journal Entry 19 by Xanthe-pup from Cardiff, Wales United Kingdom on Saturday, September 30, 2006
Sorry this has taken me so long to pass on. It's on its way to TheWhiteLion today.

Journal Entry 20 by TheWhiteLion from London, Greater London United Kingdom on Tuesday, October 03, 2006
The book was waiting for me when I arrived home after work. I've got a pile of bookrings TBR's, and will try to get to it asap!

Journal Entry 21 by TheWhiteLion from London, Greater London United Kingdom on Wednesday, November 22, 2006
It's been quite interesting to read this book. It makes one understand the unimaginable life slaves must have had. Although I found the book hard to read (the story becomes repetitive, and I ultimately became bored), I would still recommend this to others to gain some insight into history.

Have contacted Kleptokitty and will send the book off to her soon.

Journal Entry 22 by Kleptokitty on Sunday, December 10, 2006
Received safe & sound thankyou.

Though this sounds very interesting, I honestly don't think I've got the brain power to cope with it just now. I've got a brand new baby & am suffering serious sleep deprivation! I've started it & will keep it on the go, but I suspect I'll end up passing it on uncompleted.

Journal Entry 23 by Kleptokitty on Thursday, December 14, 2006
As I suspected, I tired of this very quickly! It's now on it's way to Kizmiaz.

Journal Entry 24 by kizmiaz from Belém , Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Monday, December 18, 2006
Just got it, thanks Kleptokitty and AnglersRest. I'll probably start on this after Christmas since I have a book to finish before it.

Journal Entry 25 by kizmiaz from Belém , Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Wednesday, December 27, 2006
I’ve read this book through Christmas and consider it, above all else, a wake up call.
This is quite a complete edition. All the extra material is very important in transmitting views on the truth about what was the slave situation in Southern and Northern American states in the 1800’s.
The Incidents in itself is quite a moving account of a most terrible situation and can’t even imagine what Harriet Jacobs went thru just to be free (what she doesn’t tell is much scarier than what she does), but I must say that I didn’t enjoy the way the book’s written because it felt too elaborated in form and thus taking the focus out of the contents, of course those were other times and there were other tastes to readers.
The extra material is very interesting especially the letters by Harriet and other documents that help put her life in context.
When I finished reading this book I didn’t get weepy and said “I’m glad this no longer exists”, quite the opposite, I got frustrated at the folly of men and their abuse of their own freedom to degrade others of the same kind and saw how this still goes on right in front of our eyes.
Slavery is degrading and, I’m pretty sure we all agree, immoral, nevertheless it has existed in its many forms since the dawn of time and in a lot of third world countries (and others more “civilized”) it’s still around, disguised as employment in international corporate business companies, if you doubt my words I suggest the following exercise: the next time you put on a pair of shoes or pants read the label to see where they were made and then go on-line and check out the conditions the workers that made that product live in, (there are several ways to do this and one of the best is to check the country’s official lowest wage, and I’ll bet you anytime that’s what they make, and cross reference it with the cost of living in the country, then check the unemployment rates of the same country and be amazed) , now you might say that since they are free and get paid they’re not slaves, but if you take a couple of hours of your time and do some serious thinking of how they survive I’m sure you’ll think differently in the end, it’s all a matter of seeing things in context.
Sent to Libahunt today (03.01.2007)
29.03.2007 I've pm'ed Libahunt several times to know if the book got there alright and have not received an answer.

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