The Bondwoman's Narrative

The Bondwoman's Narrative

Book - 2002
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Written in the 1850s by a runaway slave, THE BONDS- WOMANS NARRATIVE is both an historically important literary event and a gripping autobiographical novel in its own right.When her master is betrothed to a woman who conceals a tragic secret, Hannah Crafts, a young slave on a wealthy North Carolina plantation, runs away in a bid for her freedom up North. Pursued by slave hunters, imprisoned by a mysterious and cruel captor, held by sympathetic strangers, and forced to serve a demanding new mistress, she finally makes her way to freedom in New Jersey. Her compelling story provides a fascinating view of American life in the mid-1800s and the literary conventions of the time. Quite possibly the only novel written by a runaway slave, THE BONDSWOMANS NARRATIVE is a provocative literary landmark and a significant historical event that will captivate a diverse audience.
Publisher: New York : Warner Books, 2002
ISBN: 9780446530088
Characteristics: lxxiv, 338 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Additional Contributors: Gates, Henry Louis Jr.,- Editor
Alternative Title: Bond woman's narrative


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Jun 16, 2016

"Though neglected and a slave, I felt the immortal longings in me."
Though published in 2002, this is a rediscovered manuscript of enormous historical and literary interest. Turning up at an auction and probably written in the 1850s, this is thought to be the first novel written by a female slave. Harvard scholar/writer Henry Louis Gates, Jr. oversaw its publication and contributes an introduction and notes. Like many 19th century American novels (such as "Uncle Tom's Cabin"), it has some sentimental and melodramatic aspects, but this is a fascinating look into the mind and emotions of 19th century slave. Other slave narratives worth checking out: "12 Years a Slave," Frederick Douglass's book, and Harriet Jacobs's narrative.


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