The Charity Bowery By Lydia Maria Child

1650 WordsDec 17, 20157 Pages
Although slaves were able to obtain religious agency, they were still oppressed due to the different kinds of abuse they experienced such as emotional abuse. In Charity Bowery by Lydia Maria Child, Child is retelling a story of an aged colored woman, Charity Bowery, from New York. In Bowery’s story she says, “Sixteen children I’ve had, first and last; and twelve I’ve nursed for my mistress. From the time my first baby was born, I always set my heart upon buying freedom for some of my children. I thought it was of more consequence to them than to me; for I was old, and used to being a slave. But mistress McKinley wouldn’t let me have my children. One after another - one after another - she sold ‘em away from me. Oh, how many times that woman ‘s broke my heart!”(Child, p 12). Bowery is explaining to Child the various times her owner would not allow her to purchase her own children. Bowery had to endure that pain of seeing her children be sold away, one after another. This can be seen as mental abuse because Bowery had some hope that she would be able to purchase at least one of her children 's’ freedom, but was not able to do so. Instead, she had to watch her children be taken away from her. Because of this mental abuse, Bowery was oppressed due to the fact that she was not allowed to buy any of her children, and was given false hope. Mental abuse is also seen in Josiah Henson’s autobiography when he says, “ The day for the execution of the penalty was appointed. The Negroes

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