The Freedom To Remember / Edition 1

The Freedom To Remember / Edition 1

by Angelyn Mitchell
     
 


The Freedom to Remember examines contemporary literary revisions of slavery in the United States by black women writers. The narratives at the center of this book include: Octavia E. Butler’s Kindred, Sherley Anne Williams’s Dessa Rose, Toni Morrison’s Beloved, J. California Cooper’s Family, and LoreneSee more details below

Overview


The Freedom to Remember examines contemporary literary revisions of slavery in the United States by black women writers. The narratives at the center of this book include: Octavia E. Butler’s Kindred, Sherley Anne Williams’s Dessa Rose, Toni Morrison’s Beloved, J. California Cooper’s Family, and Lorene Cary’s The Price of a Child.

Recent studies have investigated these works only from the standpoint of victimization. Angelyn Mitchell changes the conceptualization of these narratives, focusing on the theme of freedom, not slavery, defining these works as “liberatory narratives.” These works create a space to problematize the slavery/freedom dichotomy from which contemporary black women writers have the “safe” vantage point to reveal aspects of enslavement that their ancestors could not examine. The nineteenth-century female emancipatory narrative, by contrast, was written to aid the cause of abolition by revealing the unspeakable realities of slavery. Mitchell shows how the liberatory narrative functions to emancipate its readers from the legacies of slavery in American society: by facilitating a deeper discussion of the issues and by making them new through illumination and interrogation.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780813530697
Publisher:
Rutgers University Press
Publication date:
03/01/2002
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
200
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.46(d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction: Visions and Revisions of Slavery1
Ch. 1Harriet A. Jacobs's Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, Written by Herself: The Ur-Narrative of Black Womanhood22
Ch. 2Not Enough of the Past: Octavia E. Butler's Kindred42
Ch. 3History, Agency, and Subjectivity in Sherley Anne Williams's Dessa Rose64
Ch. 4The Metaphysics of Black Female Identity in Toni Morrison's Beloved86
Ch. 5J. California Cooper's Family: Of (Absent?) Mothers, (Motherless?) Daughters, and (Interracial?) Relations108
Ch. 6The Economies of Bondage and Freedom in Lorene Cary's The Price of a Child127
Epilogue: "Textual Healing" and the Liberatory Narrative144
Notes151
Works Cited163
Index171

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