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By Gene Andrew Jarrett

Via a chain of essays that discover the varieties, subject matters, genres, ancient contexts, significant authors, and most recent serious methods, 'A spouse to African American Literature' offers a entire chronological review of African American literature from the eighteenth century to the fashionable day

• Examines African American literature from its earliest origins, during the upward thrust of antislavery literature within the many years top into the Civil warfare, to the trendy improvement of latest African American cultural media, literary aesthetics, and political ideologies
• Addresses the most recent severe and scholarly methods to African American literature
• positive factors essays through best confirmed literary students in addition to more recent voices

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When, in the text, he was saved from execution by being sold into Atlantic slavery, he explicitly celebrated the “miracles” that the “ALMIGHTY was pleased to work” for him, and he was grateful not just for his life, but because the Captain of a slaver chose to buy him (34–8). Africa, in Gronniosaw’s narrative, offered nothing, because living there provided no pathway to true religion. The coincidental similarity between Wheatley’s poetic expression of gratitude for being saved from “Pagan” Africa and Gronniosaw’s invocation of providence to explain his sale into Atlantic slavery highlights a problem faced by Christian writers coming to grips with the perceived absence of true religion in Africa.

A vogue for black servants within British aristocratic households further increased the number of blacks with access to formal education. These combined changes never began to provide reliable opportunity to talented black people caught up in the machinery of British slavery. The vast majority of the victims of Atlantic slavery were sold into miserable lives on Caribbean sugar islands where their masters worked them to death. 3 A number began to publish as self-styled African authors. A Companion to African American Literature Edited by Gene Andrew Jarrett © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Vincent Carretta. New York: Penguin Putnam, 1999. Daggett, David. Sketches of the Life of Joseph Mountain, a Negro, Who Was Executed at New-Haven, on the 20th Day of October, 1790, For a Rape, Committed on the 26th Day of May Last. New Haven: T. & S. Green, 1790. html. Dickson, William. Letters on Slavery. London: 1789. Equiano, Olaudah. The Interesting Narrative and Other Writings. Ed. Vincent Carretta. New York: Penguin, 1995; revised and expanded edition, 2003. Gilroy, Paul. The Black Atlantic: Modernity and Double Consciousness.

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