Preaching the Gospel of Black Revolt

Author: Reginald A. Wilburn

Publisher: Penn State Press

ISBN: 0820705977

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 406

View: 9535


In this comparative and hybrid study, Reginald A. Wilburn offers the first scholarly work to theorize African American authors’ rebellious appropriations of Milton and his canon. Wilburn engages African Americans’ transatlantic negotiations with perhaps the preeminent freedom writer in the English tradition. Preaching the Gospel of Black Revolt contends that early African American authors appropriated and remastered Milton by completing and complicating England’s epic poet of liberty with the intertextual originality of repetitive difference. Wilburn focuses on a diverse array of early African American authors, such as Phillis Wheatley, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, Frederick Douglass, and Anna Julia Cooper. He examines the presence of Milton in their works as a reflection of early African Americans’ rhetorical affiliations with the poet’s satanic epic for messianic purposes of freedom and racial uplift. Wilburn explains that early African American authors were attracted to Milton because of his preeminent status in literary tradition, strong Christian convictions, and poetic mastery of the English language. This tripartite ministry makes Milton an especially indispensible intertext for authors whose writings and oratory were sometimes presumed beneath the dignity of criticism. Through close readings of canonical and obscure texts, Wilburn explores how various authors rebelled against such assessments of black intellect by altering Milton’s meanings, themes, and figures beyond orthodox interpretations and imbuing them with hermeneutic shades of interpretive and cultural difference. However they remastered Milton, these artists respected his oeuvre as a sacred yet secular talking book of revolt, freedom, and cultural liberation. Preaching the Gospel of Black Revolt particularly draws upon recent satanic criticism in Milton studies, placing it in dialogue with methodologies germane to African American literary studies. By exposing the subversive workings of an intertextual Middle Passage in black literacy, Wilburn invites scholars from diverse areas of specialization to traverse within and beyond the cultural veils of racial interpretation and along the color line in literary studies.

Black Prometheus

Author: Jared Hickman

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0190272589

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 528

View: 7102


An innovative transnational literary study, Black Prometheus tracks the mythical figure's surprising resonance in Anglo-American antislavery discourse from 1800 until the end of the U.S. Civil War.

The Black Romantic Revolution

Author: Matt Sandler

Publisher: Verso Books

ISBN: 1788735455

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 272

View: 7191


During the pitched battle over slavery in the United States, Black writers - enslaved and free - allied themselves with the cause of abolition and used their art to advocate for emancipation and to envision the end of slavery as a world-historical moment of possibility. These Black writers borrowed from the European tradition of Romanticism - lyric poetry, prophetic visions - to write, speak, and sing their hopes for what freedom might mean. At the same time, they voiced anxieties about the expansion of global capital and U.S. imperial power in the aftermath of slavery. They also focused on the ramifications of slavery’s sexual violence. Authors like Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, George Moses Horton, Albery Allson Whitman, and Joshua McCarter Simpson conceived the Civil War as a revolutionary upheaval on par with Europe’s stormy Age of Revolutions. The Black Romantic Revolution proposes that the Black Romantics’ cultural innovations have shaped Black radical culture to this day, from the blues and hip hop to Black nationalism and Black feminism. Their expressions of love and rage, grief and determination, dreams and nightmares, still echo into our present.

Excavating Exodus

Author: J. Laurence Cohen

Publisher: Liverpool University Press

ISBN: 194997992X

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 226

View: 3252


Excavating Exodus analyzes adaptations of Exodus in novels, newspapers, and speeches from the antebellum period to the Civil Rights era. Although Exodus has perennially served to mobilize resistance to oppression, Black writers have radically reinterpreted its meaning over the past two centuries. Changing interpretations of Moses’ story reflect evolving conceptions of racial identity, religious authority, gender norms, political activism, and literary form. Black writers transformed Moses from a paragon of race loyalty into an avatar of authoritarianism. Excavating Exodus identifies a rhetorical tradition initiated by David Walker and carried on by Martin Delany and Frances Harper that treats Moses’ loyalty to his fellow Hebrews as his defining characteristic. By the twentieth century, however, a more skeptical group of writers, including Zora Neale Hurston, Ralph Ellison, and William Melvin Kelley, associated Moses with overbearing charismatic authority. This book traces the transition from Walker, who treated Moses as the epitome of self-sacrifice, to Kelley, who considered Moses a flawed model of leadership and a threat to individual self-reliance. By asking how Moses became a touchstone for notions of racial belonging, Excavating Exodus illuminates how Black intellectuals reinvented the Mosaic model of charismatic male leadership.

“My Soul Is A Witness”

Author: Carol Henderson

Publisher: MDPI

ISBN: 3036500820

Category: Social Science

Page: 138

View: 6128


This special collection assembles some of the most pre-eminent scholars in the field in African, African American, and American Studies to explore the ways writers reclaim the Black female body in African American literature using the theoretical, social, cultural, and religious frameworks of spirituality and religion. Central to these discussions is Black women’s agency within these realms—their uncanny ability to invent and reinvent themselves within individual and communal spaces that frame them as both outsider and insider, unworthy and worthy, deviant and sacred, excess and minimal. Scholars have sought to discuss these tensions, acknowledged and affirmed in prose, poetry, music, essays, speeches, written plays, or short stories. Forgiveness, healing, redemption, and reclamation provide entry into these vibrant explorations of self-discovery, passion, and self-creation that interrogate traditional views of what is spiritual and what is religious. Discussed writers include Toni Morrison, Phillis Wheatley, James Baldwin, Tina McElroy Ansa, Toni Cade Bambara, and Thomas Dorsey.

Veiled Intent

Author: Natasha Duquette

Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers

ISBN: 1532600194

Category: Religion

Page: 304

View: 9370


How were eighteenth-century dissenting women writers able to ensure their unique biblical interpretation was preserved for posterity? And how did their careful yet shrewd tactics spur early nineteenth-century women writers into vigorous theological debate? Why did the biblical engagement of such women prompt their commitment to causes such as the antislavery movement? Veiled Intent traces the pattern of tactical moves and counter-moves deployed by Anna Barbauld, Phillis Wheatley, Helen Maria Williams, Joanna Baillie, and Mary Anne Schimmelpenninck. These female poets and philosophers veiled provocative hermeneutical claims and calls for social action within aesthetic forms of discourse viewed as more acceptably feminine forms of expression. In between the lines of their published hymns, sonnets, devotional texts for children, and works of aesthetic theory, the perceptive reader finds striking theological insights shared from a particularly female perspective. These women were not only courageously interjecting their individual viewpoints into a predominantly male domain of formal study--biblical hermeneutics--but also intentionally supporting each other in doing so. Their publications reveal they were drawn to biblical imagery of embodiment and birth, to stories of the apparently weak vanquishing the tyrannical on behalf of the oppressed, and to the metaphor of Christ as strengthening rock.

American Claimants

Author: Sarah Meer

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0192540610

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 280

View: 1956


This book recovers a major nineteenth-century literary figure, the American Claimant. For over a century, claimants offered a compelling way to understand cultural difference across the Anglophone Atlantic, especially between Britain and the United States. They also formed a political talisman, invoked against slavery and segregation, or privileges of gender and class. Later, claimants were exported to South Africa, becoming the fictional form for explaining black students who acquired American degrees. American Claimants traces the figure back to lost-heir romance, and explores its uses. These encompassed real, imagined, and textual ideas of inheritance, for writers and editors, and also for missionaries, artists, and students. The claimant dramatized tensions between tradition and change, or questions of exclusion and power: it offered ways of seeing activism, education, sculpture, and dress. The premise for dozens of novels and plays, a trope, a joke, even the basis for real claims: claimants matter in theatre history and periodical studies, they touch on literary marketing and reprinting, and they illuminate some unexpected texts. These range from Our American Cousin to Bleak House, Little Lord Fauntleroy to Frederick Douglass' Paper; writers discussed include Frances Trollope, Julia Griffiths, Alexander Crummell, John Dube, James McCune Smith, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Mark Twain. The focus on claimants yields remarkable finds: new faces, fresh angles, a lost column, and a forgotten theatrical genre. It reveals the pervasiveness of this form, and its centrality in imagining cultural contact and exchange.

Paradise Lost

Author: Michael Cavanagh

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 0813232465

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 256

View: 4177


"The author provides a book-by-book examination of Paradise Lost for the first-time reader, highlighting the important features of Milton's epic style"--

Global Milton and Visual Art

Author: Angelica Duran,Mario Murgia

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield

ISBN: 1793617074

Category:

Page: 432

View: 5111


Global Milton and Visual Art showcases the aesthetic appropriation and reinterpretation of Milton's works and legend in diverse eras, regions, and media. The purposefully-brief chapters, illustrations, and web-images demonstrate key instances of intermedial translation and adaptation, especially of Paradise Lost, in the context of globalization.

Phillis Wheatley's Miltonic Poetics

Author: P. Loscocco

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137470054

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 154

View: 6563


Phillis Wheatley, the African-born slave poet, is considered by many to be a pioneer of Anglo-American poetics. This study argues how in her 1773 POEMS, Wheatley uses John Milton's poetry to develop an idealistic vision of an emerging Anglo-American republic comprised of Britons, Africans, Native Americans, and women.