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Letter to Reverend Samson Occum/Letter to John Adams. 254-255. Letter to Reverend Samson Occum, by Phillis Wheatley. First African-American poet to be published. Unusual life: kidnapped at 7 in West Africa; sold to prosperous Wheatley family at Boston slave auction.

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letter to reverend samson occum by phillis wheatley
Letter to Reverend Samson Occum, by Phillis Wheatley
  • First African-American poet to be published.
  • Unusual life: kidnapped at 7 in West Africa; sold to prosperous Wheatley family at Boston slave auction.
  • Within 16 months, the precocious child had mastered English and could read the Bible.
  • Went on to learn Latin and Greek.
startling success story 254
Startling Success Story. 254.
  • Wheatley family encouraged her.
  • Started writing poetry as teenager.
  • Newspapers began publishing her poems—most on moral and religious subjects—became famous in colonies and England.
visited london 1773 to publish her book of poetry
Visited London 1773 to publish her book of poetry.
  • Toast of society; met Ben Franklin, nobles and dignitaries.
  • Life as a Free Black Woman. 254.
  • Gained freedom, married free black man.
  • Life together a losing battle against poverty—being free but black almost as bad as being a slave.
  • Tried to publish second book; Boston had lost interest—war-torn and financially strapped.
letter to john adams by abigail adams 254
Letter to John Adams, by Abigail Adams, 254.
  • Wife of second US president, John Adams.
  • Mother of sixth, John Quincy Adams.
  • Equally well-known for outspoken opinions—wrote thousands of personal letters.
  • Intelligent and Competent.
  • Daughter of wealthy minister
read extensively in father s well stocked library
Read extensively in father’s well-stocked library.

Managed farm and family business affairs as husband became more involved in colonial politics; struggle for independence.

An Early Feminist?

Support for women’s education

Acutely aware of men’s “absolute power.”

Thinking advanced for her time—favored abolitition of slavery also.

conventional view of woman s
Conventional view of woman’s
  • Subordinate role in society.
  • 255. Diction—writer’s choice of words.
  • Vocab (words) and syntax (arrangement of words.)
  • Formal or informal
  • Common or technical
  • Abstract or concrete.
  • Formal diction: How many are the solitary hours I spend, ruminating upon the past, and anticipating the future…
tone or attitude toward subject
Tone or attitude toward subject
  • Often communicated through diction.
  • Reading Strategy: Reading primary sources, 255.
  • Primary sources: materials written or made by people who took part in or witnessed events portrayed.
  • Unique insights
consider
Consider:
  • Who was the writer?
  • What is the form of document: letter, diary, speech?
  • When and where was it written?
  • Who is the audience?
letter to the reverend samson occum 256 257
Letter to the Reverend Samson Occum, 256-257.
  • The Reverend Samson Occum was Mohegan Indian who became a minister after converting to Christianity.
  • He had criticized some of his fellow ministers for owning slaves in a letter to Wheatley.
  • Read, vocab and notes, pages 256-261.
256 analyze visuals
256. Analyze Visuals.
  • This image shows a slave auction in New Amsterdam. (New York).
  • What does this tell you about slavery in colonial America?
  • Slavery was a popular trade.
  • Many colonists were attending—many must have owned slaves.
2 10 09 eng 3 homework
2/10/09Eng 3 Homework
  • Grammar book:
  • Verbals 59-60. Gerund Phrases. Notes.
  • Verbals Infinitive Phrases, 61-62. Notes.
  • WB: Prepositional Phrases 34-36.
  • Appositives 37-39
  • Verbals: Participial Phrases, 40-41.
  • Spelling #20. Sentences and 3 x each. Practice Test 2/11/09 Wed.
  • Final Test 2/13/09, Friday.
  • Test - The Crisis.
  • Table of Contents page and one 200-word entry due 2/13/09.
  • Be reading. Due 2/27/09, Friday.
  • http://www.mshogue.com/ce9/Ind_novel/logs.htm#title
authority
Authority.
  • Wheatley thinks God has the ultimate authority over people.
  • She believes God put the desire for freedom in every human heart and will deliver that freedom when ready.
  • She hopes God will make those who support freedom while oppressing slaves realize the error of their thinking, 14-15.
a diction 256
A. Diction, 256.
  • Wheatley’s diction is formal. Shje uses difficult, long words, such as “obliging kind epistle,” (line 1), and glorious dispensation, line 6.
  • Her language is elevated and abstract.
  • White people may have started to think differently about black people after reading her writing.
b primary sources
B. Primary sources.
  • This letter is a primary source, written by someone of the times. She deals with the public issues of the natural right African americans have to freedom, line 3 and the contradiction in people fighting for freedom while supporting the oppression of black people, lines 17-19.
letter to john adams by abigail adams 258
Letter to John Adams, byAbigail Adams, 258.
  • Abigail wrote to her husband to “remember the ladies” in the new laws for the new country.
  • “Do not put such unlimited power into the hands of husbands.”
  • John’s response was to laugh and remark, “You are so saucy.”
  • This is the next letter she sent him.
258 visuals
258. Visuals.
  • These are pastel portraits of Abigail and John Adams, done in 1766, about two years after their marriage.
  • How would young couples of today be different?
she begins her letter by expressing value of her husband s work
She begins her letter by expressing value of her husband’s work
  • to found the nation over his family’s needs.
  • She describes chaos and lack of leadership in Boston.
  • She urges the new government to declare sovereignty and points out that men’s power over women contradicts their goal to liberate the nation.
c primary sources
C. Primary Sources.
  • Adams is concerned with both public and private issues.
  • She tells her husband she misses him.
  • She also writes about the public issues of her husband’s duties.
  • The public duties and public issues of the time take precedence over their personal lives.
she believes if the country falls
She believes if the country falls,
  • The life of any individual will not matter.
  • D. Diction. Political words:
  • Tgovernment
  • Stability; colony; Congress; maxims of state; king; people.
  • Adams’ diction shows her sophisticated thinking. She is comfortable discussing issues of public policy.
e primary sources 260
E. Primary sources, 260.
  • Colonial men want to be freed from Great Britain, but they continue to keep their wives and daughters enslaved.
  • F. Diction. Relationships between husbands and wives were formal during colonial times.
questions 261
Questions, 261.
  • 1. Wheatley praises Occum for supporting the “natural rights” of African Americans.
  • 2. She says greed is the cause of slavery.
  • 3. Adams says if the country perishes, saving individuals won’t matter.
  • 4. She complains the colony lacks security. Volunteers will help, but they need Congress’ authority.
  • 5. Slaveholding ministers are hypocrites.
  • She trusts in God to stop slavery and its absolute power.