Presentation Title

The Function of Memory Loss in Of One Blood

Presenter Information

Celia VelazquezFollow

Faculty Mentor

Colleen Tripp

Start Date

17-11-2018 8:45 AM

End Date

17-11-2018 9:00 AM

Location

C305

Session

Oral 1

Type of Presentation

Oral Talk

Subject Area

humanities_letters

Abstract

Pauline Hopkin’s novel, Of One Blood, depicts two black women during the nineteenth century with differing experiences. In the world of Of One Blood, there is the female character Dianthe Lusk in the United States and Queen Candace in the hidden city of Telassar in Africa. This essay identifies how the black characters in Of One Blood are oppressed in the United States, which leads the characters to search for freedom in Africa. Dianthe suffers from memory loss, which causes her to lose her identity. She is unaware of the history of her family. Dianthe is black, but is white passing. The character, Aubrey, uses this information to manipulate Dianthe. Dianthe's decision of hiding her mixed race demonstrates the severity of racism. The sexism that Dianthe experiences is that the other characters in the novel view Dianthe as a child, who can't make decisions. Her doctor, Reuel, pressures Dianthe into marrying him. Dianthe's race and gender prevent her from having freedom to make choices. In comparison, Queen Candace knows her history and the history of her home of Telassar. As a queen, Candace has control of herself and others. Dianthe is representative of the black women who were deprived of their history and agency because of the role of racism and sexism. This novel from the nineteenth century also has contemporary relevance. The black characters in this novel are not accepted in the United States and must leave the United States to find a home. There are still people in the United States who are not accepted in the United States. Immigrants are one example of this, as immigrants are often told to leave the United States. Of One Blood displays how, certain groups of people were not welcomed in the United States, which is still an issue.

Summary of research results to be presented

The summary of results of my research indicate that the author of the novel, Of One Blood, what to demonstrate the oppression of black Americans during the nineteenth century. Pauline Hopkins exposes how black women had unfair advantages. Hopkins demonstrates this with the character, Dianthe Lusk. Dianthe is first involved in a train accident, which causes her to suffer from memory loss. Because of the memory loss, Dianthe can’t make her own decisions. Dianthe is a white-passing black woman. Her brother manipulates her with this information. Dianthe also dies because her brother poisons her. With all the tragedy Dianthe faces in her life, Hopkins establishes how Dianthe is oppressed by society because of her race and gender. Hopkin’s other female character in this novel, Queen Candace, serves as an example of what freedom for black women could look like. At the end of the novel, Queen Candace is able to marry based on her own decisions. The results of my research signifies how black women in the United States during the nineteenth century were not free.

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Nov 17th, 8:45 AM Nov 17th, 9:00 AM

The Function of Memory Loss in Of One Blood

C305

Pauline Hopkin’s novel, Of One Blood, depicts two black women during the nineteenth century with differing experiences. In the world of Of One Blood, there is the female character Dianthe Lusk in the United States and Queen Candace in the hidden city of Telassar in Africa. This essay identifies how the black characters in Of One Blood are oppressed in the United States, which leads the characters to search for freedom in Africa. Dianthe suffers from memory loss, which causes her to lose her identity. She is unaware of the history of her family. Dianthe is black, but is white passing. The character, Aubrey, uses this information to manipulate Dianthe. Dianthe's decision of hiding her mixed race demonstrates the severity of racism. The sexism that Dianthe experiences is that the other characters in the novel view Dianthe as a child, who can't make decisions. Her doctor, Reuel, pressures Dianthe into marrying him. Dianthe's race and gender prevent her from having freedom to make choices. In comparison, Queen Candace knows her history and the history of her home of Telassar. As a queen, Candace has control of herself and others. Dianthe is representative of the black women who were deprived of their history and agency because of the role of racism and sexism. This novel from the nineteenth century also has contemporary relevance. The black characters in this novel are not accepted in the United States and must leave the United States to find a home. There are still people in the United States who are not accepted in the United States. Immigrants are one example of this, as immigrants are often told to leave the United States. Of One Blood displays how, certain groups of people were not welcomed in the United States, which is still an issue.