Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Janet Gabler-Hover - Chair
Carol P. Marsh-Lockett
I argue that William Wells Brown’s narrative, Clotel, is informed by the white racism inherent in Thomas Jefferson’s Notes on the State of Virginia and reveals evidence of the trauma it has fostered transgenerationally. By examining Toni Morrison’s Beloved, I assert that the trauma of slavery is transmitted transgenerationally in the black female body. I develop my argument using trauma theory, postulated through the work of Cathy Caruth, Dori Laub, Diana Miles, Abraham and Maria Torok, and William Cross. My purpose is to reveal the relevance and lasting significance of the legacy of slavery in contemporary American society. Thomas Jefferson’s white supremacist ideas, along with the system of slavery which nurtured them, continue to plague contemporary American thought and continue to shape African American female identity.
McCoy-Wilson, Sonya Lynette, "Transgenerational Ghosting in the Psyches and Somas of African Americans and their Literatures" (2008). English Theses. Paper 39.