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Thursday, October 6, Old State House (800 Main Street, Hartford)
October 6, 2022 @ 5:45 pm - 7:00 pm
In-person and virtual livestream options
Stranger in a Strange Land: Ann Plato’s Strategy for Autonomy as Evidenced in Essays; Including Biographies and Miscellaneous Pieces, in Prose and Poetry
In 1841, Ann Plato becomes the first African American writer to publish a collection of essays. When scrutinized through a white canonical literary lens or juxtaposed with accepted African American authors, her work is generally criticized for being derivative and of “little literary merit,” rendering Plato a footnote in history. This presentation will explore Ann Plato’s literature against this assessment, situating the publication of Essays as a treatise that strategically optimizes the author’s opportunity for social and physical mobility.