Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2011

Publisher

Johns Hopkins University Press

Abstract

Readers familiar with Susanna Rowson as the author of Charlotte Temple (1791, 1794) do not think of her as an abolitionist. But in 1805 Rowson articulated an anti-slavery position in Universal Geography, a textbook addressed to schoolgirls such as those she herself taught at the Young Ladies Academy in Boston. Condemning those who viewed sugar and slavery as a winning equation that would make them rich, Rowson denounced the "purchase and sale of human beings," and insisted that anyone "enlightened by reason and religion" would oppose the "horrid trade," and see it as she did, as "a disgrace to humanity."1 At other points in the text, she condemned both the slave drivers in the West Indies, who "exercise[d] the most unpardonable barbarity and tyranny" over "unresisting sufferers," and North American slave owners, whose characters, she argued, registered the obvious negative effects of their immoral practice.

Comments

Copyright © 2011 The Johns Hopkins University Press. This article first appeared in Studies in American Fiction 38:1&2 (2011), 163-184. Reprinted with permission by Johns Hopkins University Press. http://doi.org/10.1353/saf.2011.0008

Share

COinS
 
 

To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.