Mary Ann Shadd Cary
The Black Press and Protest in the Nineteenth Century
Published by: Indiana University Press
304 Pages, 14 b&w photos
- Published: July 1999
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" . . . an extraordinary and richly contextualized biography that highlights the engagement and agency of a little-known African American activist who challenged the obstacles gender and race posed for her." —The Journal of American History
"Rhodes provides a well-researched, balanced, clearly written assessment of the extraordinary life of this trailblazing African American feminist and reformer." —Choice
"In this book we see how a courageous and pugnacious journalist-activist fought arduously to attain freedom from male dominance and establish a model for future feminists." —Quill & Scroll
"Jane Rhodes' wonderful biography of Mary Ann Shadd Cary . . . is an insightful and moving portrait of a determined and resourceful Black woman who put all she had into ending slavery and securing full human rights for her people." —Darlene Clark Hine
"This is an excellent book. Not only does it illuminate the details of the life of a little-known journalist of considerable accomplishment, but it also contributes to the body of knowledge relevant to numerous other subject areas." —Rodger Streitmatter
Mary Ann Shadd Cary was a courageous and outspoken 19th-century African American who used the press and public speaking to fight slavery and oppression in the United States and Canada. Her life provides a window on the free black experience, emergent black nationalisms, African Americans' gender ideologies, and the formation of a black public sphere.
1. The Making of an Activist
2. Emigration Furor and Notes of Canada West
3. Trouble in "Paradise"
4. "We Have 'Broken the Editorial Ice'"
5. The Chatham Years
6. Civil War and the End of the Canadian Sojourn
7. Reconstructing a Life—Reconstructing a People
8. Law and Reform in the Nation's Capital
Conclusion: A Life Spent Fighting at the Margins
"Rhodes provides a well—researched, balanced, clearly written assessment of the extraordinary life of this trailblazing African American feminist and reformer. Born into Delaware's small free black elite, Shadd Cary was an educated, articulate woman ahead of her time in many ways as an advocate for abolitionism, black nationalism, women's rights, and temperance. Disillusioned with the racial climate in the US, she emigrated to western Canada in the early 1850s to teach the children of fugitive slaves. There she founded the Provincial Freeman, the first newspaper in North America to be published and edited by a black woman. Besides using the newspaper to advocate black liberation, she recruited blacks for the Union army and struggled tirelessly to improve conditions for people at society's margins. She also struggled with black male dominance, the account of which reveals a good deal about gender politics, class, and color in 19th—century Northern black communities. Rhodes includes 46 pages of notes that reflect extensive research in US, Canadian, and English sources, a 17—page bibliography of primary and secondary sources, and photographs. Recommended highly for libraries with strong collections in African American and Canadian history. Upper—division undergraduates and above. —R. Detweiler, California Polytechnic State Universit"~San Luis Obispo , , Choice