영어영문학연구, Vol.59 no.4 (2017)
pp.23~44

필리스 휘틀리의 ‘해방의 시학’

강신욱

(전북대학교)

Since Phillis Wheatley’s Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral was published in 1773, Phillis Wheatley has been evaluated as the founding mother of African American literature as well as African American Women literature. However, her reputation and place in the literary history were not so secure because her status as a black female slave forced her readers to consider her socio-political role and symbol rather than anything else. Therefore, “the question of how to interpret and evaluate Wheatley the poet in light of her status as a black female slave in eighteenth-century New England has been the critical crux” for researchers of Wheatley and her poems. Lots of her critics have argued that Wheatley failed to not only meet the urgent needs of African American people suffering under the iron chains of slavery, but identify herself with African American people. But such an estimation of Wheatley seems nothing but the result of their failures to appreciate that Wheatley was a ‘genius in bondage’ and furthermore her main literary strategies were irony, parody, and subversion. So in this article, I want to examine and evaluate her wellknown poems focusing on their historical context and literary devices. As a result, I want to show that Wheatley was an excellent poet who represented the cause of freedom for African American people in her own unique ways, not ignoring to point out the gap and absurdity between crying for American Independence and maintaining slavery system.
  미국 흑인 문학, 흑인 여성 시인, 필리스 휘틀리, ‘해방의 시학’, 노예제

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