Harriet Jacobs Freedom Narrative

Harriet Jacobs4

Harriet Jacobs Freedom Narrative

Saturday October 26, 2013

A Discussion with Jean Fagan Yellin & Farah Jasmine Griffin

Teacher workshop -10am

National Constitution Center, 525 Arch Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106, 215.409.6600

A teacher workshop, carrying Act 48 credits, co-sponsored by Melvin Garrison and the Office of Curriculum & Assessment of the School District of Philadelphia – To register: Melvin Garrison at mgarrison20@comcast.net


Public Presentation

Co-Sponsored by Independence Seaport Museum & Moonstone

Independence Seaport Museum, 211 S Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19106, (215) 413-8655

Free admission with the newspaper supplement as your ticket

4:30pm – Special tour of the exhibit Tides of Freedom: African Presence on the Delaware River

which explores the concept of freedom through the lens of the African experience along the Delaware. Throughout the exhibition Tukufu Zuberi, curator, scholar, professor, and PBS History Detectives host, introduces each major section, touching on important themes and crucial artifacts to provide visitors with a dramatic and engaging overview.


5:00pm – Harriet Jacobs Freedom Narrative

 “I have My dear friend — Striven faithfully to give a true and just account of my own life in Slavery — God knows I have tried to do it in a Christian spirit…I ask nothing — I have placed myself before you to be judged as a woman whether I deserve your pity or your contempt — I have another object in view it is to come to you just as I am a poor Slave Mother — not to tell you what I have heard but what I have seen — and what I have suffered — and if there is any sympathy to give — let it be given to the thousands — of Slave Mothers that are still in bondage…let it plead for their helpless Children…” — Letter from Harriet Jacobs to Amy Post, June 21,1857

Jean Fagan Yellin

Jean Fagan Yellin is a literary historian specializing on Women’s Literature and African-American Literature and Distinguished Professor Emerita of English at Pace University. She is best known for her scholarship on escaped slave, abolitionist, and author Harriet Ann Jacobs. She received her B.A. from Roosevelt University and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Illinois. She began teaching at Pace University in 1968. Her dissertation was published in 1972 as The Intricate Knot: Black Figures in American Literature. She was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in 1990 for Women and Sisters: The Anti-Slavery Feminists in American Culture and won the 2004 Frederick Douglass Prize and the Modern Language Association’s William Sanders Scarborough Prize for Harriet Jacobs: A Life.

Farah jasmine Griffin

 Farah Jasmine Griffin is a professor of English and comparative literature and African American Studies at Columbia University, where she has served as director of the Institute for Research in African American studies.  Farah received her B.A. from Harvard and Ph.D. from Yale. The recipient of numerous honors and awards for her teaching and scholarship, in 2006-2007 Professor Griffin was a fellow at the New York Public Library Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers. She is the author of Who Set You Flowin’: The African American Migration Narrative , If You Can’t Be Free, Be a Mystery: In Search of Billie Holiday and Clawing At the Limits of Cool: Miles Davis, John Coltrane, and the Greatest Jazz Collaboration Ever. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, Harper’s Bazaar, Callaloo, and African American Review.

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