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The Cover
August 4, 2010

The Legend of John Brown

JAMA. 2010;304(5):502. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.1033

Jacob Lawrence (1917-2000) said that he painted what he knew, and since his life experiences derived from his national, race, and class group, his observations of race and class struggles in the United States naturally became the substance of his paintings (JAMA cover June 7, 2000). Lawrence is best known for several series of paintings on historical themes, such as slavery, migration, and war. One of these series told the story of John Brown, a man who believed that God had called him to free American slaves by force.