Presentation on theme: "THE SLAVE NARRATIVE LEQ3: WHAT IS A SLAVE NARRATIVE AND WHAT ARE ITS ELEMENTS?"— Presentation transcript:
THE SLAVE NARRATIVE LEQ3: WHAT IS A SLAVE NARRATIVE AND WHAT ARE ITS ELEMENTS?
Previous Knowledge What do you think slave narratives are? What issues might be discussed?
Purposes Attempted to arouse the sympathy of readers in order to promote humanitarianism. Emphasized traditional Christian religious ideas. Showed acceptance of the ideals of the dominant white society Emphasized the cruelty of individual slave owners.
Reasons for Popularity Lurid scenes of horror and violence that served as an acceptable gratification of the popular appetite for sensationalism. Religious influence: didactic content Interesting descriptions of life in the South Propaganda weapons during abolition and Civil War
Traits of the Narrator Is abruptly brought from state of protected innocence to confrontation with the evil of slavery and captivity Suffers from forced existence in an alien society Is unable to submit or effectively to resist Balances yearning for freedom against the perils of escape. Sees his or her condition as a symbol of the suffering condition of all the lowly and oppressed Grows in moral and spiritual strength as a result of suffering and torment.
Common themes Exposes physical and emotional abuses of slavery: scenes of whipping, sexual abuse, starvation, especially of women or children Exposes (sometimes satirically) white owners' hypocrisy and inconstancy Describes quest for freedom Includes vignettes of other character types and the experience of slavery: those who succeed and those who fail Makes overt appeals to imagined audience Details loss of significant family member(s) and the destruction of family ties
Relevance to Reason? How does this form of literature fit within the Age of Reason? How might these narratives be similar to other narratives we have read? Turn to the excerpt of “The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano” on page 22 (Academic) or page 188 (Advanced)
Slave Narratives What have you noticed in the reading so far? Why does this fit within the Age of Reason? LEQ3: What is a slave narrative and what are its elements?