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CliffsNotes AP English Language and Composition With an Conceive your thesis statement, which will go in your introductory paragraph. Organize your body.

Her mother died before she was three, and her father was not a part of her life. Watkins was likely her mother's maiden name. Because few exact details are known, much of Watkins's early life must be extrapolated from contemporary accounts of her activities, which described her as mulatto in color. Mulatto is a term used to describe African Americans of mixed black and white parentage; therefore, her father was probably white.

This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue? Upload Sign In Join. Save For Later. Create a List. Read on the Scribd mobile app Download the free Scribd mobile app to read anytime, anywhere. Author Biography Little is know of Harper's childhood or her family. Watkins was raised by.

Strong Female Friday: Frances Ellen Watkins Harper | Strong Women Strong Girls

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The Slave Mother

This meant a boycott of products which would have been produced by slave labor. She writes of this stance in her poem Free Labor. I wear an easy garment, O'er it no toiling slave Wept tears of hopeless anguish, In his passage to the grave. And from its' ample folds Shall rise no cry to God, Upon its warp and woof shall be No stain of tears and blood. This fabric is too light to bear the weight of bondsmen's tears, I shall not in its texture trace the agony of years. Too light to bear a smother'd sigh, From some lorn woman's heart, Whose only wreath of household love Is rudely torn apart.

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Then lightly shall it press my form, Uburden'd by a sigh; from its seams and folds shall rise, No voice to pierce the sky,. And witness at the throne of God, In language deep and strong, That I have nerv'd Oppression's hand, For deeds of guilt and wrong. Early in her life much of her writing focused on abolition but that was not her only cause. Harper wrote and spoke tirelessly on gender equality, temperance, and Christian reform. She spoke to both black and white audiences calling them to lives of integrity and meaning.

We can hear this message loud and clear in her poem Be Active p Be Active. Onward, onward, sons of freedom, In the great and glorious strife; You've a high and holy mission On the battle field of life. See oppression's feet of iron Grind a brother to the ground And from bleeding heart and bosom, Gapeth many a fearful wound. Sit not down with idle pity, Gazing on his mighty wrong; Hurl the bloated tyrant from him- Say my brother, oh, be strong! See that sad, despairing mother Clasp her burning brow in pain; Lay your hand upon her fetters- Rend, oh! Here's a pale and trembling maiden, Brutal arms around her thrown; Christian father, save, ohl save her, By the love you bear your own!

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Yearly lay a hundred thousand New-born babes on Moloch's shrine; Crush these gory, reeking altars- Christians, let this work be thine. Where the Southern roses blossom, Weary lives go out in pain; Dragging to death's shadowy portals, Slavery's heavy galling chain,. Men of every clime and nation, Every faith, and sect, and creed, Lay aside your idle jangling, Come and staunch the wounds that bleed. On my people's blighted bosom, Mountain weights of sorrow lay; Stop not now to ask the question, Who shall roll the stone away?

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Set to work the moral forces, That are yours of church and state; Teach them how to war and battle 'Gainst oppression, wrong, and hate. Frances Ellen Watkins Harper heard in the Christian Gospel a call to action and lived her life in service to that call. She challenged the understandings of her day and took many personal risks, using both her written words and her public speaking to encourage others to to take action. Her short story Two Offers was the first short story to be published by an African American.

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It tells the story of two cousins and the paths their lives had taken. One sought marriage for safety and the other who had been brought up in poverty went on to achieve an important place as a writer. At the end of the story this second woman gets up from the deathbed of her cousin who had chosen safety and a conventional life and rededicates herself to the path she had chosen. Listen now as she speaks for in these words we hear Ms.

Harper speaking of herself and the life she chose to live and the meaning she found there. Two Offers p Her cousin turned from that death bed a sadder and wiser woman. She resolved more earnestly than ever to make the world better by her example, gladder by her presence, and to kindle the fires of her genius on the altars of universal love and truth. She had a higher and better object in all her writings than the mere acquisition of gold, or acquirement of fame. She felt that she had a high and holy mission on the battle-field of existence, that life was not given her to be frittered away in nonsense, or wasted away in trifling pursuits.

She would willingly espouse an unpopular cause but not an unrighteous one. In her the down-trodden slave found an earnest advocate; the flying fugitive remembered her kindness as he stepped cautiously through our Republic, to gain his freedom in a monarchial land, having broken the chains on which the rust of centuries had gathered. Little children learned to name her with affection, the poor called her blessed, as she broke her bread to the pale lips of hunger. Her life was like a beautiful story, only it was clothed with the dignity of reality and invested with the sublimity of truth.

True, she was an old maid, no husband brightened her life with his love, or shaded it with his neglect.

Frances E W Harper - The Slave Mother

No children nestling lovingly in her arms called her mother. No one appended Mrs.