The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman

1277 Words 6 Pages
Ernest J. Gaines book, The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman, used many historical events to connect to the characters story. The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman was published by Bantam Books in 1972 and has 259 pages. The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman is a classic fictional book. The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman is the story if a women’s life told when she was over one hundred years old. The novel goes over 3 main periods of time: war years, reconstruction, and slavery. In The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman it is the time of reconstruction and the novel really connects with the history of the time. The novel starts the story at when Jane was a young slave. The Emancipation Proclamation was a decree announced my …show more content…
When slavery was abolished conditions for black people got worse. Many slaves where beat and treated cruelly during slavery but because they where property and useful they were spared their lives. When slavery was abolished many black people were killed because they where no longer anyone’s property.
In the story Jane talked about how many former slaves as well as herself do not cry much anymore because they have seen so much death and tragedy that it has become a normal thing. Nate, a small boy Jane had to take care of in the story, knew not to make any noise while in the bushes hiding from the patrollers because even at a young age he knew death was not far away and did not cry when his family was killed. Many white people killed black people throughout the story and did not get punished for it.
Jane and Ned, stops traveling to Ohio and finds work on a plantation. The difference for Jane now, as for many black people, they could get paid for their labor. By the late 1870s, most former slaves in the rural South had been drawn into a subservient position in a new labor system called sharecropping (Abbott et al. 441). When Jane gets older she becomes involved in a relationship with a man that takes their family off the plantation to become a sharecropper.
The premise of this system was relatively simple: The landlord furnished the sharecroppers with a house, a plot of land to work, seed, some farm animals, and farm