The Black Woman By Deborah Gray White Essay

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Deborah Gray White, author of Ar’n’t I a Woman? Female Slaves in the Plantation South, courageously plunges into the research and understanding of the slave experience through race and gender. The overall slave experience of the antebellum South is often represented by the male experience. For the first time, White brings forth an understanding of slave life through the female lens. White reasons that the female slave experience differed from the male slave experience due to the assigned gender roles. In addition to gender roles, White introduces a double consciousness of the black woman by identifying their struggle to escape restraints placed on both the slave and the woman. White supports this claim when she declares,“ If she [the black woman] escapes the myth of woman, the myth of the Negro still ensnares her.” Through the evaluation of appointed gender roles and labor, White convincingly contends that women experienced slavery differently than men.
Similar narratives of bondwomen are provided in White’s monograph to support and validate convincing claims made by White. Stories provided by several women help the reader develop an intimate understanding of what life was like for the female slave. The main argument White presents to assert claims relies on the labor performed by each gender. Dissimilar slave occurrences arise within the labor of fieldwork, housework, and mobility services.
In the South, both men and women performed fieldwork on plantations. An aspect…

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