Black Africans in the British Imagination: English by Cassander L. Smith

By Cassander L. Smith

As Spain and England vied for dominance of the Atlantic international throughout the 16th and 17th centuries, mounting political and spiritual tensions among the 2 empires raised a troubling specter for modern British writers trying to justify early English imperial efforts. particularly, those writers eager about encounters with black Africans in the course of the Atlantic international, trying to use those issues of touch to articulate and protect England’s international pursuits. In Black Africans within the British mind's eye, Cassander L. Smith investigates how the actual presence of black Africans either enabled and disrupted English literary responses to Spanish imperialism. by way of reading the level to which this inhabitants helped to form early English narratives, from political pamphlets to travelogues, Smith bargains new views at the literary, social, and political impression of black Africans within the early Atlantic world.

With unique research of the earliest English-language money owed from the Atlantic international, together with writings through Sir Francis Drake, Sir Walter Ralegh, and Richard Ligon, Smith techniques touch narratives from the point of view of black Africans, getting better figures frequently relegated to the margins. This interdisciplinary learn explores understandings of race and cross-cultural interplay and revises notions of whiteness, blackness, and indigeneity. Smith unearths the level to which touch with black Africans impeded English efforts to stigmatize the Spanish empire as villainous and to malign Spain’s management of its colonies. furthermore, her research illustrates how black presences encouraged the narrative offerings of ecu (and later Euro-American) writers, offering a extra nuanced knowing of black Africans’ function in modern literary productions of the region.

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