Pauline Hopkins Research Paper

Improved Essays
Kaylen Simmons
Dr. Piper Huguley-Riggins
215 English: 20th Century Black Women Writers
7 July 2016
Pauline Hopkins’ Legacy African American 20th Century writers have played a big role in educating the community. The authors and poets of the Harlem Renaissance who prospered in the 1920s, such as Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston, have become more popular and their works have been recognized and interpreted in English classes in recent years. Pauline Hopkins should be included the next time English 215: 20th Century Black Women Writers.
Pauline Elizabeth Hopkins was a writer, editor, playwright, singer and actress. Hopkins was born in Portland, Maine on August 13, 1859 (Pauline E. Hopkins Biography). She was born to free parents who raised
…show more content…
She was taught the stenographer’s trade, and began to work. While working as a stenographer Hopkins continued to watch black and white relations and she began to write essays that expressed her ideas and observations. Which is important because it helped shaped some of her views on the two races. She began to work on a novel that expressed personal and political tensions between the northern and southern United States. The difficulties of blacks amid the racist violence of post-Civil War America provided a theme for her first novel, Contending Forces: A Romance Illustrative of Negro Life North and South. The novel is about a mixed-race family from early 19th-century slavery in the West Indies and the southern United States to early 20th-century Massachusetts. “Hopkins’ novel gained instant attention, as well as a certain amount of respect due to her straightforward take on post-Civil War race relations” (Pauline E. Hopkins Biography). The novel became very popular. “She is best remembered as a pioneer in using the traditional literary form of the romantic novel to explore and challenge racial and gender representations of middle-class African Americans …show more content…
Hopkins became a regular contributor to Colored American, and by 1901, she became the editor of its women’s department. Hopkins was an active member of the magazine’s staff for the following two years. Her contributions, included a series of biographies of famous African Americans. Hopkins was named literary editor of Colored American. Her writings on “Famous Men and Women” of the “Negro” race, is important because it and should be taught in 215 because it biographical sketches of racial uplift that provide valuable information about lesser-known figures in 19th/20th-century African American history

Related Documents

  • Superior Essays

    Toni Morrison wanted to influence other African Americans to write, just as she did. She said a young black person seeing her do what she does, and write about her race, and culture might inspire them to write about it as well. She also impacted literature by writing with self assurance. Morrison claimed that it was her writing with self assurance that led her to Howard University, and what gave her the courage to split from her husband (Hoby, 2005). Toni Morrison influenced people, mainly African Americans, to write about what they found interest and assurance in, and what would help them in their lives.…

    • 1451 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Skeeter In The Help

    • 666 Words
    • 3 Pages

    The film, The Help directed by Tate Taylor is about a determined story to make a change in black civil rights in Jackson, Mississippi. Skeeter, is a main character who was influenced by others to stand up for the purpose of black civil rights. Skeeter is a young, self-motivated and successful woman, who has the aspirations to be an excellent writer. She is quite different from her friends, as she has a different view on the racism and civil rights of the black maids. She is strongly influenced by the black maids, Aibileen and Minnie to write a book to create awareness of their mistreatment.…

    • 666 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Frederick Douglass and Harriet Jacobs are imperative figures in African-American literature. Both of the books serve as monuments of the struggles both of them had experienced. Later on, the books and essays that were in «slave narrative» genre, that Douglass and Jacobs initiated, will influence the future generation that would be on the front line of the abolitionist movement. Frederick Douglass finished his book by stating ‘Sincerely and earnestly hoping that this little book may do something toward throwing light on the American slave system, and hastening the glad day of deliverance to the millions of my brethren in bonds’ (Douglas) … and it certainly…

    • 1038 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Alice Walker Feminist

    • 1196 Words
    • 5 Pages

    Alice Walker, Maya Angelou, and Zora Neale Hurston are prominent black women authors in contemporary American literature. These three women share their experiences living in the South during a time of racism. Each of them has a distinct writing style. All include an insight into experiences similar to ones they have gone through and the impact it makes on black women in society. “Feminism’s second wave in the United States—initially a reflection of the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s and the subsequent women’s liberation movements of the 1960s and 1970s—is primarily responsible for spawning feminist literary criticism” (Freccero).…

    • 1196 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Decent Essays

    He talks about how important it is to marry, but to be careful with marrying a person with different skin color. With his hypocritical statement on marriage, readers are allowed to see that socioeconomic status and race are important in a upperclass relationship. To conclude, with careful analyzation of the novel, it is evident to see that certain sociological studies were being performed during the 1920’s. For example, the struggle for an African American were being presented in the society. This journal is a great source to use because of the ability to realize the head of the frontier.…

    • 1365 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Improved Essays

    As a leader in the Harlem Renaissance Hurston was a revolutionary in helping to protect the rights of African Americans. She was known during the Harlem Renaissance for her wit, irreverence, and folk writing style. Hurston was though most well known for her popular novels. Where she was born has been the topic of some debate since Hurston wrote about it in her autobiography. Hurston was also known to adjust her birth year from time to time as well.…

    • 660 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    In this context, the critic MadhuDubey states that “like Walker, Toni Morrison is widely acclaimed as a “major author” of the developing black women’s fictional tradition”(2). Actually, in her novels, Morrison has repeatedly insisted on black women’s identity as depicted in The Bluest Eye(1970), Sula(1973), Beloved(1989), and A Mercy(2008).In her novel Paradise, Morrison subverts traditional gender rules by bringing the female characters to the foreground and giving them agency. She exposes the readers to a new type of females who have not only liberated themselves from the social constrains and stereotypes but also built a community that reflects “Paradise” on earth. In one of her interviews with Claudia Dreifusin Time New York Magazine (1994), Morrison explains the context of writing Paradise as follows: I wanted to write books that ran the whole gamut of women’s sexual experiences. I did not like the imposition that had been placed on black women’s sexuality in literature.…

    • 976 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    This is important because the 1970’s mark the advances in the civil rights movement and the rise of the feminist movement. Since Angelou was African American, a woman, and confident, she played a large role in advocating for rights. During this time, Angelou also wrote a book called I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. This controversial book made the best seller list, but was banned in many schools because of its inappropriate content about a sexual abuse story. This goes to show that Angelou is not only a talented writer, but she writes about what she knows with no fear of the consequences she may receive.…

    • 434 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    As a novelist, screenwriter and playwright, Suzan-Lori Parks had a great influence on literature. Suzan-Lori Parks should be taught in English 215 because she has paved the way for African American women and she can teach the community more about the African American history and culture. In “Understanding Suzan-Lori Parks” by Biography.com, Larson claims that “Parks belongs to the group of writers…

    • 1632 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Her French and English teachers in high school helped further her career, so she wrote about them (“Nikki” 151). She was also influenced by leaders of the Black Arts Movement (“Nikki” 152) and Civil Rights Movement, talking about the struggle of being black in America (“Nikki” 155). Nikki’s early writings talked about black trends.…

    • 1061 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays