Friday, January 04, 2008

Studying 19th Century Black Women Writers

So, one of the highlights this semester for me will be this directed research that I’ll be doing. This is like, taking a class, only I’ll be the only student. That’s a good thing in that I’ll get time and attention (or at least I think I will) with studying and focusing on a subject or genre of particular interest to me. It will be under the direction and guidance of a professor that I’ve chosen, and I’ll be using this information to help prepare for my thesis in the fall. I had to create and propose the syllabus for this research, which had to be accepted by he Language and Literature department head. For me, this subject will be 19th century African American women writers.

The two texts I’ve chosen as primary are Reconstructing Womanhood: The Emergence of the Afro American Woman Novelist by Hazel V. Carby and Written By Herself: Literary Production by African American Women, 1746-1892 by Francis Smith Foster (a scholar at Emory University that I hope to ultimately have more interaction with). The writers that I’ll be studying are the narratives of Harriet Jacobs and Elizabeth Keckley, Anna Julia Cooper, Pauline Hopkins, Francis E.W. Harper, Ida B. Wells, and Mary Church Terrell. It will be interesting to study the similarities and the individualities of these black women and their work through the veil of the Victorian era and in the aftermath of the Civil War.

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At 6:59 PM , Blogger Martine Joelle said...

I'm in a similar situation and google led me to your blog. I can create an independent study for anything I want. I will be doing an internship and thesis ( a piece of research/writing) and I still need to fill five credits. I've wanted to do some more research on Mary Church Terrell and yet I want to write fiction that is possibly related to 19th century women...I'm curious how this project went for you as it look like it was last year for you.

Thanks so much for any thoughts you may have,

At 9:33 PM , Blogger persistence said...

Thanks for your interest Martine! This project went well for me, as I received a grade of A! But it was mostly helpful in allowing me to do the preliminary research for my thesis, which I'm doing this semester. I'm actually not quite done with MCT yet, but I understand she was pretty instrumental in the founding of the Nat'l Associationof Colored Women. This kind of independent study is a great way to focus on the subject that is most interesting or important to you. Good luck with yours!


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