3.02.150 S Women's Slave Narratives


  • Mittwoch: 08:00 - 10:00, wöchentlich


Although the majority of slave narratives were written by men, women actively participated in the nineteenth-century black anti-slavery struggle. Black women even continued to publish their slave narratives after 1866, when blacks received the rights to citizenship (14th Amendment). While men and women shared the experiences of backbreaking labor, physical and psychological brutality, and precarious living and family circumstances, women were additionally subjected to sexual abuse and exploitation. We will study these ante- and postbellum narratives by and about women’s experiences in slavery with special consideration of
- the context of the (transnational) abolitionist struggle that shaped the genre;
- the conflicts that emerged with regards to the middle-class ideals of white womanhood;
- the (racialized) stereotypes with which black women had to contend;
- the counter discursive practices in which they engaged.
We will also explore their representations of bodies and agency, their strategies of resistance, and their resilience against physical, mental, and emotional violence and oppression. Please purchase and read the following slave narratives:
• Harriet Jacobs, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (1861)
• Hannah Crafts, The Bondwoman’s Narrative (ca. 1853-1860)
• Elizabeth Keckley, Behind the Scenes, Or Thirty Years a Slave and Four Years in the White House (1868).
Additional reading materials can be found on Stud.IP.



  • ang615 Motifs - Themes - Issues (and their Media)


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