Category: archives

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Silence and the Reclamation of Voice in Rebecca Hall and Hugo Martínez’s “Wake”

Looking through historical documents, specifically British court documents, related to the 1712 slave revolt in New York, Rebecca Hall encounters the names of four women involved in the revolt. However, their testimony doesn’t exist within the record. Instead, it simply reads, in reference to one of the women, “Having nothing to say for herself than what she had previously said . . .” The … Read More Silence and the Reclamation of Voice in Rebecca Hall and Hugo Martínez’s “Wake”

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“Racially Inflicted Language” and the Archives

In Playing in the Dark, Toni Morrison highlights the ways that language obfuscates yet also illuminates he Africanist presence at the heart of American literature. Morrison delivered the lectures that would constitute Playing in the Dark in 1990, and she foresaw possible backlash from her ideas. She chose to risk backlash because the point she sought to make was vitally important. As she puts it, “for both … Read More “Racially Inflicted Language” and the Archives

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“Paper”

A few months ago, Jadyn DeWald asked me to participate in a reading on campus. I debated reading something about Frank Yerby or Lillian Smith; however, I chose, instead, to write a short story. Below is the story that I wrote. It is entitled “Paper.”

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Letter to a Young Overseer, Unexperienced

Over the course of the past few semesters, I have had students work in the Auburn University archives. As they did this, they discovered various items that may be of interest to my readers. One such item comes from the John Horry Dent collection. Dent was a wealthy plantation owner in Barbour County, AL, owing up to five plantations at one point. During his … Read More Letter to a Young Overseer, Unexperienced

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Archive Project: Taking Students Out of the Classroom and Into History

Note: You can view the projects at engl2250.wordpress.com. Over the past year, I have constructed various projects for my literature survey courses. Last fall, I had students define a term related to Early American literature and present what they learned. In the spring, I had students read a novel or play by an author we were looking at in the course and present information … Read More Archive Project: Taking Students Out of the Classroom and Into History