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One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: Kofi (---.ym.rnc.net.cable.rogers.com)
Date: September 16, 2004 08:01PM

I want to know what the significance of the peom entitled: One Being Brought from Africa to America....................... a response in the next 4 hours or so will be greatlly appreciated.



One Being Brought From Africa To America
by Phillis Wheatly

'TWAS mercy brought me from my Pagan land,
Taught my benighted soul to understand
That there's a God, that there's a Saviour too:
Once I redemption neither fought now knew,
Some view our sable race with scornful eye,
"Their colour is a diabolic die."
Remember, Christians, Negroes, black as Cain,
May be refin'd, and join th' angelic train.


Re: PLease can someone explain that poem Poem posted this time
Posted by: Pam Adams (134.71.192.---)
Date: September 16, 2004 08:45PM

It helps to know something about Phillis Wheatly's background- she was a slave and also a poet. However, here she's saying that being brought to America as a slave was a good thing, as she was able to find Christianity.

[www.csustan.edu] />
pam


Re: PLease can someone explain that poem Poem posted this time
Posted by: marian2 (---.range81-152.btcentralplus.com)
Date: September 17, 2004 04:16AM

NB typos - line 4 - should be 'neither sought nor knew'. I'd also question the spelling of 'die' (meaning 'dye'?) but it might be archaic or to emphasis the double meaning of that sound - most of her poetry seems to be too unsophisticated for that, though. The only source I've seen is the Pam's link, and I don't have time to search today.


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: Hugh Clary (---.denver-02rh15-16rt.co.dial-access.att.net)
Date: September 17, 2004 12:05PM

"Their colour is a diabolic die."

It's in quotes, for some reason. Should the reader recognize the quotation? Could be black spots on dice as well? A small amount of black in a large amount of white, that is.


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: StephenFryer (---.lns1-c7.dsl.pol.co.uk)
Date: September 17, 2004 01:46PM

Some interesting stuff on the LitWeb -
[www.wwnorton.com] />

Stephen


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: Pam Adams (---.bus.csupomona.edu)
Date: September 17, 2004 01:52PM

I think that the quotes are to indicate that the sentence is what the (white) people are saying when they look at the black people.

pam


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: JohnnySansCulo (---.dyn.optonline.net)
Date: September 18, 2004 01:19AM

I dont think it is "die" as in "dice", but rqther the "MOLD" meaning


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: peternsz (---.client.comcast.net)
Date: September 18, 2004 01:25AM

The words in quotes would be from some who would deny the sany race capable of purification or Christianity. The mark of Cain being interpreted a the dark skin of Afica.
Her black souls has a Gaod and a Saviour., contrary tothe view expressed in quotes.

Go Phillis

Peter


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: peternsz (---.client.comcast.net)
Date: September 18, 2004 01:27AM

Gorgive, i"m being attacked by the the the typo-demons again.

Peter


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: JohnnySansCulo (---.dyn.optonline.net)
Date: September 18, 2004 01:32AM

i think Gorgive is the Klingon God of Typos


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: peternsz (---.client.comcast.net)
Date: September 18, 2004 01:35AM

"Their color is a diablolic die." Why doesn't 'die' for 'dye' refer to 'color' as in a stamp, with secondary play on death? By 1773 English spelling would not has been calcified by the New Englandlers in America.


Peter


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: JohnnySansCulo (---.dyn.optonline.net)
Date: September 18, 2004 01:46AM

Good point....the dye is cast


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: Linda (---.cache.pol.co.uk)
Date: September 18, 2004 08:34AM

I thought it was less the mark of Cain, more the curse of Noah on Ham because he saw him drunk and naked, unlike Shem and Japhet who walked backwards with a blanket to cover him up.


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: JohnnySansCulo (---.dyn.optonline.net)
Date: September 18, 2004 12:01PM

Ham's being cursed to be subservient was used as justification for slavery, but the mark of cain is more effective here because "all men shall know you" is why non-black indentured servants could take off and blend in if they escaped, while the black could never.


Re: One Being Brought From Africa To America
Posted by: Marian-NYC (---.nyc1.dsl.speakeasy.net)
Date: September 20, 2004 08:08PM



I found the line elsewhere with the word spelled DYE.

So probably the simplest explanation is the best: "Some people think Africans are black because the devil colored them that way."

The poem seems entirely sincere to me. Sickening, but sincerely.




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