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Summary Of The Miracle Of Black Poetry In America By June Jorda

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In a time when Africans were stolen from their native lands and brought through the middle passage to a land that claimed was a free country, a small African girl, who would later be known as Phillis Wheatley, was sold in Boston in 1761. In the speech, “The Miracle of Black Poetry in America”, written by June Jordan, a well respected black poet, professor and activist, wrote the speech in 1986, 200 years after Phillis walked the earth, to honor the legacy of the first black female poet for the people of the United States. Jordan, passionately alludes to the example of Phillis Wheatley’s life, to show the strength and perseverance of African-American people throughout difficult history and how they have overcome the impossible. Jordan uses miraculous diction in order to emphasize Phillis’ strength when she was sold as a slave. Jordan explained the strength Phillis Wheatley had as she took her tragic situation into her own hands, “Following her “intrinsic ardor,” and attuned to the core of her own person, this girl, the first published black poet in America, had dared to redefine herself from house slave to, possibly, an angel of the Almighty.” The use of miraculous diction, like redefined, was to gratify how she did not let society define her as a slave. She pushed to be bigger than what society wanted her to be, because she had so much within her. Jordan emphasized how Phillis Wheatley was somehow loved by her slave masters, that they saw her amazing heart and saw
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