Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Escape to Freedom: A Play About Young Frederick Douglass by Ossie Davis

An impactful play in eighty-eight pages and five scenes, Escape to Freedom dramatizes the incredible life of Frederick Douglass.  Beginning with his childhood and ending with his escape from slavery in 1838, this short text focuses primarily on Douglass’ boyhood.  Written in the seventies and set in what feels like the distant past, students are not likely to pick this up on their own.  ELA teachers, however, may be interested in acquiring multiple copies of this affordable text for use with their middle school students.  As is often the case with plays, it takes a team to make it come to life.  Playwright Ossie Davis succinctly captures the power of reading in a world where it is forbidden to some. Social Studies teachers may appreciate the depiction of American slavery in the south in the 1800s.--Jessica Fenster-Sparber

Davis, Ossie.  Escape to Freedom: A play about young Frederick Douglass.  New York: Scholastic, 1976.

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