It is interesting to me that Oroonoko or, The Royal Slave was held up by abolitionists on why the slave trade should be outlawed. While at first glance, I believed that it was an attack on slavery, showing through the classic, and often racist, trope of the noble savage that black slaves could be just as human … Continue reading Is The Royal Slave an Attack on Slavery?
What’s In A Name?
“What’s in a name? that which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet.”William Shakespeare The famous lines written by William Shakespeare challenge the importance of a name. The quote is shared between the lovers, Romeo Montague and Juliet Capulet, saying that either would be the same person even if they … Continue reading What’s In A Name?
Royal and Heroic Slaves
Often found in slave narratives is a type of character called the “noble savage” who is an African American character, or other outsider, portrayed as agreeable and uncorrupt to a more dominant group, such as white people. This character trope often involved giving the character “whiter” characteristics to make them more understandable and accepted by … Continue reading Royal and Heroic Slaves
Imoinda and Ophelia
Something that really interested me about Oroonoko was something that Marc was talking about last class. He mentioned that Imoinda was essentially just bouncing back and forth, falling under the “possession” of various male characters, with hardly any agency of her own. This was a little perplexing – most of the time, we expect woman writers to … Continue reading Imoinda and Ophelia
Oroonoko and honor
While The Royal Slave follows many different themes throughout the story, one of the leading characteristics of the character Oroonoko is honor. The prince has a strong understanding in what is right, or just, and follows this philosophy through his death. All of the actions executed by Oroonoko are done with full commitment. His status within … Continue reading Oroonoko and honor
Transnational Similarities and the Slipperiness of (Non)Fiction
Similar to what Carmen wrote in her post, I was really struck by the similarities between Oroonoko and so many of the other texts we read for Early American Literature. Last semester Abby had us read this non-canonized text called “The Female American; or, The Adventures of Unca Eliza Winkfield,” which was written under the … Continue reading Transnational Similarities and the Slipperiness of (Non)Fiction