Essay Phillis Wheatley and her Poetry

Phillis Wheatley and her Poetry

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African-American Studies
This paper discusses the poem “Being Brought From Africa.”

This paper introduces us to the author Phillis Wheatley and one of her poems that was written about the lives of slaves in the United States. The author gives a brief historical overview and biography of Ms. Wheatley before going on to discuss her poem, “Being Brought From Africa.” Ms. Wheatley’s importance as a black author who made significant contributions to American literature is also discussed. The paper illustrates the author’s intense religious beliefs which allowed her to have a very unique outlook on life and her position in the family in which she served when she was brought to America in the late 1800s.
“This poem is probably one of the most famous of Wheatley’s work, and it is often reproduced in print and on the Internet. The simple eight lines are short, but they tell quite a story in only a few words. Marsha Watson said of this poem, Read literally, the first quatrain has struck many critics as a shocking example of Wheatley’s willingness to sell her blackness for a pottage of white acceptability. But read metaphorically, as multilayered discourse, On Being Brought chronicles Wheatley’s metaphysical, poetic journey from the hopeless and powerless mortality of an ancient pagan mythos, to the Christian promise of ultimate spiritual liberty and redemption` (Watson 123).`

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