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Author, Dr. Karsonya Wise Whitehead~ Notes from a Colored Girl

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The Gist of Freedom

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Join The Gist of Freedom as we welcome and congratulate one of Maryland's  TOP 25 WOMEN PROFESSORS
author Dr. Karsonya Wise Whitehead !  In Notes from a Colored Girl Dr. Whitehead examines the life and experiences of Emilie Frances Davis, a freeborn twenty-one-year-old black woman, through a close reading of three pocket diaries she kept from 1863 to 1865. Since there are few primary sources written by black women during this time in history, Davis's diary--though ordinary in its content--is rendered extraordinary simply because it has survived to be included in this very small class of resources. 

Whitehead's extensive analysis illuminates the lives of many through the simple words of one.

Whitehead explores Philadelphia's free black community in the nineteenth century. Although Davis's daily entries are sparse, brief snapshots of her life, Whitehead interprets them in ways that situate Davis in historical and literary contexts that illuminate nineteenth-century black American women's experiences. Whitehead's contribution of edited text and original narrative fills a void in scholarly documentation of women who dwelled in spaces between white elites, black entrepreneurs, and urban dwellers of every race and class.  Since there are few primary sources written by black women during this time in history, Davis's diary--though ordinary in its content--is rendered extraordinary simply because it has survived to be included in this very small class of resources. Whitehead's extensive analysis illuminates the lives of many through the simple words of one.

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