Heartss Essay, Research Paper
When Jacobs was 21, she one time once more adamantly rejected Dr. Norcom & # 8217 ; s offer to go his courtesan. He punished her by directing her out to make fieldwork on a local plantation, go forthing her kids in the attention of her grandma. When she learned that Dr. Norcom planned to direct them to work at the plantation every bit good, she decided to run off. Skilled in the implacable logic of bondage, Jacobs assumed right, as it turned out, that Dr. Norcom would sell her kids if she fled. Therefore, she made agreements with Sawyer to buy them. Working through a alternate, a speculator in the slave market, Sawyer did so and returned the kids to the attention of Jacobs & # 8217 ; s grandma. In the interim, Jacobs hid in town, concealed by sympathetic friends and neighbours. Dr. Norcom became consumed by his avid, progressively frantic, and obsessional attempts to happen her. For the following seven old ages, Jacobs adopted assorted artifices to throw him off her trail. During this full period, she remained concealed in a cramped crawl infinite under the roof of her grandma & # 8217 ; s house, an experience that would go forth her physically impaired for the remainder of her life.
In 1842, Jacobs eventually managed to get away north, doing her manner to New York City, where she found work in the place of Nathaniel Parker Willis. In New York she was reunited with her girl, Louisa ( who had antecedently been sent to Brooklyn by Sawyer ) , and arranged for her boy, Joseph, to populate with her brother, John, who had escaped from bondage and now lectured on the emancipationist circuit. Jacobs joined her brother in 1849, traveling to R
ochester, New York, where she ran the Anti-Slavery Reading Room. She also became actively involved with a group of antislavery feminists, including a woman who became a close friend, Amy Post, who had attended the historic 1848 Women’s Rights Convention in Seneca Falls, New York. It was Post who urged Jacobs to write her life story, as so many former slaves had as a weapon in the escalating struggle against chattel slavery. After the passage of the 1850 Fugitive Slave Act, Jacobs returned to New York to work for the Willis family. Although Dr. Norcom had died, his descendants continued their efforts to find and capture her. In 1852, Mrs. Willis purchased Jacobs’s freedom, freeing her as well of the burden of secrecy she had carried for many years. As Jacobs confided to Post, she had long been weighed down by feelings of guilt and shame. To write a narrative that graphically exposed and politicized the sexual exploitation of women slaves would mean revisiting her own personal history. Jacobs solved this problem by creating fictitious names and locations and, most important, by creating an alter ego, Linda Brent. Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl was privately printed early in 1861 on the eve of the Civil War, one of the few full-length slave narratives written by a woman. After the Civil War broke out, Jacobs left New York to do relief work among the slaves who escaped to the Union Army, raising funds for them and working in Washington, D.C.; Arlington, Virginia; and Savannah, Georgia. After 1868 she returned north, spending her last years with her daughter in Boston and Washington, D.C. She died in 1897. -J.A.M.
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