Category: the slave’s narrative

+

Harriet Jacobs’ Challenge to the Cult of True Womanhood

A while back, I wrote a post about the ways that Harriet Jacobs, in Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, challenges the Cult of True Womanhood. Specifically, she counters it by showing the ways that society denied her the chance to adhere to the four pillars of the Cult of True Womanhood. Thinking about this some more, I want to briefly look … Read More Harriet Jacobs’ Challenge to the Cult of True Womanhood

+

Frederick Douglass’ Rhetorical Rebuttals of Stereotypes

Over the past couple of semesters, I have taught Frederick Douglass’ What to the Slave is the Fourth of July? instead of teaching his narrative. I do this for a couple of reasons. One, I assign Solomon Northup’s Twelve Years a Slave, and during discussions about Northup, I bring in Douglass’ narrative and Harriett Jacobs’ Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl because … Read More Frederick Douglass’ Rhetorical Rebuttals of Stereotypes

+

The Transmission of Racist Thought in Solomon Northup’s “Twelve Years a Slave”

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a post entitled “Why can’t we just move on? The past is the past.” In that post, I examine how Thomas Jefferson, David Walker, and Solomon Northup all argue that it is nurture, not nature, that produces within us thoughts of discrimination. I wrote about Northup’s descriptions of William Ford and Edwin Epps’ son in that post, … Read More The Transmission of Racist Thought in Solomon Northup’s “Twelve Years a Slave”

+

Surveillance and “Dark Sousveillance” in Solomon Northup

In various posts, I ave written about surveillance in African American literature and music in the works of Ernest J. Gaines, Lecrae, and Arna Bontemps. Drawing upon Jeremy Bentham’s “Panopticon,” Michel Foucault argues that individuals, in various settings, experience surveillance whether they know it or not. As well, that surveillance creates within the subject a feeling of policing him or herself, thus becoming both … Read More Surveillance and “Dark Sousveillance” in Solomon Northup

+

The Juxtaposition of Beauty and Brutality in Solomon Northup’s Twelve Years a Slave

During an interview with Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Steve McQueen commented on the juxtaposition between beauty and horror in his film adaptation of Twelve Years a Slave (2013). I have written about this before in regards to the scene where Tibeats attempts to lynch Nortup. Today, I want to expand upon that discussion some more, especially after recently rereading Northup’s narrative. This time around, … Read More The Juxtaposition of Beauty and Brutality in Solomon Northup’s Twelve Years a Slave

"Star Wars: The Force Awakens" and the Antebellum Slave Narrative

Back in October, I wrote about the controversy from some sectors that arose when the trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens appeared on Monday Night Football. With the distance of a few months, and upon recently watching the film again, I want to provide a possible way of looking at this film in regards to American literary history. As I sat at home … Read More "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" and the Antebellum Slave Narrative