Black and White Women of the Old South

Topics: Slavery, White people, Black people Pages: 4 (1629 words) Published: October 8, 1999
Minrose Gwin‘s book, Black and White Women of the Old South, argues that history has problems with objectiveness. Her book brings to life interesting interpretations on the view of the women of the old south and chattel slavery in historical American fiction and autobiography. Gwin's main arguments discussed how the white women of the south in no way wanted to display any kind of compassion for a fellow woman of African descent. Gwin described the "sisterhood" between black and white women as a "violent connection"(pg 4). Not only that, Gwin's book discusses the idea that for most of the eighteenth and nineteenth century, a black woman usually got subjected to displacement of sexual and mental frustration of white women. Gwin discusses how these black women, because of the sexual and mental abuse, felt looked down on more by whites and therefore reduced to even a lower level than that of white women‘s status of being a woman. .
A southern white female slave owner only saw black women as another slave, or worse. White women needed to do this in order to keep themselves from feeling that they were of higher status than every one else except for their husband. White women as, Gwin describes, always proved that they had complete control and black women needed to bow to them. Gwin's book discusses that the white male slave owners brought this onto the black women on the plantation. They would rape black women, and then instead of the white women dealing with their husbands. They would go after the black women only since the wives had no power over the husbands, but they maintained total control of the slaves, the white women would attack the black women and make their lives very diffucult. The white women would make sure that the black women understood that the white women completely hated the black women for being raped and wanted only pain for the them. This is how the black women of that time got the stereotypes of being...
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