Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Les Harrison

Second Advisor

Shermaine Jones

Third Advisor

David Latané

Fourth Advisor

Ryan Smith


Through their editorial arrangements of African-American, Euro-American and European poetry, fiction and news, Frederick Douglass’s anti-slavery periodicals (The North Star and Frederick Douglass’ Paper) imagine a cosmopolitan discourse that predates the segregated realities of the antebellum United States. In spite of Southern blockades against the infiltration of Northern texts, Douglass’s material space uniquely capitalized on the limited restrictions of his reprinting culture to relocate the voice of the ‘outraged slave’ onto a global stage. From the poems of Phillis Wheatley and William Cowper to Charles Dickens’s Bleak House and Douglass’s own novella “The Heroic Slave,” this project considers how Douglass’s literary inclusions—and exclusions—complicate our static considerations of the historicized Douglass and exhibit his savvy insertions of black print into an exclusive, transatlantic nineteenth-century print culture.


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VCU University Archives

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VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission


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