William Lloyd Garrison

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Last Updated on June 7, 2022, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 469


Barnes, Gilbert Hobbs. The Antislavery Impulse, 1830-1844, pp. 55-170. New York: D. Appleton-Century Co., 1933.

Presents a revisionist judgment of the Garrison legend, maintaining the Garrison's role in the anti-slavery movement was largely that of a fanatical agitator whose real impact was negligible.

Browne, Stephen H. “Encountering Angelina Grimké: Violence, Identity, and the Creation of Radical Community.” Quarterly Journal of Speech 82, no. 1 (February 1996): 55-73.

Close analysis of a letter written by Angelina Grimké to Garrison regarding the symbolic uses of violence in the creation of a public identity allied to the abolitionist cause.

Dillon, Merton L. “The Abolitionists: A Decade of Historiography, 1959-1969.” Journal of Southern History 35, no. 4 (November 1969): 500-22.

Surveys a decade of critical reinterpretations of Garrison and other members of the American anti-slavery movement that, whether positive or negative, strongly emphasize the historical significance of these individuals.

Duban, James. “Thoreau, Garrison, and Dymond: Unbending Firmness of Mind.” American Literature 57, no. 2 (May 1985): 309-17.

Explores the theme of nonviolent resistance to civil authority in the writings of Garrison, Henry David Thoreau, and Jonathan Dymond.

Great Lives Observed: William Lloyd Garrison, edited by George M. Fredrickson, Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1968, 182 p.

Collection of excerpts from Garrison's writing and speeches, followed by a comprehensive survey selection of contemporary critical responses to Garrison and modern, historical interpretations of his work.

May, Samuel J. “William Lloyd Garrison.” In Some Recollections of Our Antislavery Conflict, pp. 15-39. Boston: Fields, Osgood, & Co., 1869.

Anecdotal remembrance of Garrison that endeavors to vindicate the reformer from his disparagers.

Rohrbach, Augusta. “‘Truth Stronger and Stranger Than Fiction’: Reexamining William Lloyd Garrison's Liberator.American Literature 73, no. 4 (December 2001): 727-55.

Probes the advertising practices of Garrison's Liberator, arguing that the newspaper introduced many innovations into the print medium in order to promote its message of evangelical morality and sustain its commercial viability.

Selby, Gary S. “The Limits of Accommodation: Frederick Douglass and the Garrisonian Abolitionists.” Southern Communication Journal 66, no. 1 (fall 2000): 52-66.

Focuses on the strong tensions between the social reform ideology of freed slave Frederick Douglass and that of Garrisonian abolitionism as they illuminate the risks associated with a complete black acceptance of white-led reform movements.

Villard, Oswald Garrison. “William Lloyd Garrison, Editor; ‘The Good Old Days.’” In Some Newspapers and Newspaper-Men, pp. 302-15. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1926.

Provides a laudatory estimation of Garrison as editor of the Liberator.

Walters, Roger G. The Antislavery Appeal: American Abolitionism After 1830, Baltimore, Md.: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1976, 196 p.

Full-length study of the nineteenth-century abolitionist movement in America that elucidates the theoretical and practical contributions of Garrison as a central figure within the larger scheme of anti-slavery reform.

Additional coverage of Garrison's life and career is contained in the following sources published by Thomson Gale: Concise Dictionary of American Literary Biography, 1640-1865; Literature Resource Center; and Dictionary of Literary Biography, Vols. 1, 43, and 235.

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