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The writings of Afro-American women in the 19th century have remained buried in obscurity, accessible only in research libraries or in expensive and hard-to-find reprints. Many of these books have never been reprinted at all: in some instances only one or two copies are extant.
Oxford University Press, in collaboration with the Schomburg Library, is publishing thirty volumes of these compelling and rare works of fiction, poetry, autobiography, biography, essays, and journalism. Each volume contains an introduction written by an expert in the field, including such well-known scholars as Mary Helen Washington, Hazel Carby, Deborah McDowell, Valerie Smith, Houston A. Baker, Jr., and Frances Foster; together, this important new collection will make accessible for the first time the entire range of works written by black women between 1773 and 1910.
The series includes never-before-published reprinted texts, such as The Hazely Family, as well as Clarence and Corrine, Ann Plato's Essays, Phillis Wheatley's Collected Works, Emma Dunham Kelley's pioneering novel, Megda, Pauline Hopkins's three serialized novels, and Frances E. W. Harper's Complete Poems (never before collected). It also presents a newly discovered novel, Four Girls at Cottage City by Emma Dunham Kelley, as well as the first American edition of Wonderful Adventures of Mrs. Seacole in Many Lands.
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Henry Louis Gates, Chairman of the Department of Afro-American Studies and W.E.B. DuBois Professor of the Humanities, Harvard University.Review:
"An extraordinary representation...The Schomburg Library of Nineteenth-Century Black Women Writers allows us for the first time to see clearly the full dimensions of the literary achievements of black women....The voices of these black women provide a stunning new collective portrait of the Afro-American rise from slavery to freedom....This magnificent project will dramatically change the landscape of Afro-American literature and American cultural history."--Eric J. Sundquist, The New York Times Book Review
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