Dark Victorians illuminates the cross-cultural influences between white Britons and black Americans during the Victorian age. In carefully analyzing literature and travel narratives by Ida B. Wells, Harriet Martineau, Charles Dickens, Frederick Douglass, Thomas Carlyle, W. E. B. Du Bois, and others, Vanessa D. Dickerson reveals the profound political, racial, and rhetorical exchanges between the groups. Evoking moral and political debates of the Victorian age, this study investigates how African Americans and Britons perceived each another. Black America's romance with Victorian Britain and Britons' knowledge of black Americans, Dickerson argues, was largely the result of travelers who crossed the Atlantic and then shared their experiences--often by publishing them in nonfictional or fictional forms--with their compatriots. _x000B__x000B_From nineteenth-century black nationalist David Walker, who urged emigrating African Americans to turn to England, to twentieth-century writer Maya Angelou, who recalls how those she knew in her childhood aspired to Victorian ideas of conduct, black Americans have consistently embraced Victorian England. In tracing the origins of this connection, Dark Victorians considers how philanthropic and abolitionist Victorian discourses influenced black identity and racism in America and how Britons negotiated their support of African Americans with the controlling policies they used to govern a growing empire of dark-skinned peoples. _x000B__x000B_
Subjects: Sociology, History, Language & Literature
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