Hartford's Ann Plato and the Native Borders of Identity

Ron Welburn
eISBN-13: 9781438455785

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Who was Ann Plato? Apart from circumstantial evidence, there's little information about the author of Essays; Including Biographies and Miscellaneous Pieces, in Prose and Poetry, published in 1841. Plato lived in a milieu of colored Hartford, Connecticut, in the early nineteenth century. Although long believed to have been African American herself, she may also, Ron Welburn argues, have been American Indian, like the father in her poem "The Natives of America." Combining literary criticism, ethnohistory, and social history, Welburn uses Plato as an example of how Indians in the Long Island Sound region adapted and prevailed despite the contemporary rhetoric of Indian disappearance. This study seeks to raise Plato's profile as an author as well as to highlight the dynamics of Indian resistance and isolation that have contributed to her enigmatic status as a literary figure.

ISBNs 9781438455761, 143845578X, 9781438455785
Language English