After reading about the backgrounds and poetry of both Anne Bradstreet and Phillis Wheatly, I have reflected on the power of poetry. These two women both lived difficult lives, but somehow found solace in words. I was especially moved by Phillis Wheatly’s story because she seemed to overcome so much. Although I was confused on how she was educated and traveled to Europe for her poetry, but somehow was still enslaved and kept at arms distance from the family.
Additionally, I can understand the frustration from 20th century critics of Black American literature because it seems that to a certain extent, she does not criticize slavery. In her poem On Being Brought from Africa to America she talks about educating people with Christian values and how she is grateful for that, but she did not criticize the fact that she was taken. I do not understand this, but she may have just been educated to believe this is ok. Another argument on why she didn’t speak out is that it was not safe to do so, or it would not have been well received by her audiences. I also agree somewhat with the article argued, that she used biblical allusions and her faith as a way to argue for abolition just more covertly.