9780312152659 / 0312152655

Clotel: Or, The President's Daughter: A Narrative of Slave Life in the United States (Bedford Cultural Editions)


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Publisher:Bedford/St. Martin's, 2000



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About the book:

William Wells Browns Clotel (1853), the first novel written by an African American, was published in London while Brown was still legally regarded as "property" within the borders of the United States. The novel was inspired by the story of Thomas Jeffersons purported sexual relationship with his slave Sally Hemings. Brown fictionalizes the stories of Jeffersons mistress, daughters, and granddaughters  all of whom are slaves  in order to demythologize the dominant U.S. cultural narrative celebrating Jeffersons America as a nation of freedom and equality for all. The documents in this edition include excerpts from Browns sources for the novel  fiction, political essays, sermons, and presidential proclamations; selections that illuminate the range of contemporary attitudes concerning race, slavery, and prejudice; and pieces that advocate various methods of resistance and reform.

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