What does Bradstreet’s poem tell us about the nature of Puritan marriages? Do you find this to be a surprising poem?
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In general, it is known that Puritans believe that marriages should be based on true love. The poem by A. Bradstreet “To My Dear and Loving Husband” could serve as a confirmation of this statement (although, of course, this is a single case that might have been an exception). Nevertheless, the poem may be described as surprising, for it is apparent that it should be based on rather strong feelings, so strong that they inspired the author to express them publicly as a poem.
How would you describe the mood/sentiment of Wheatley’s poem? Do you think her reaction to enslavement was common?
Generally speaking, the mood of P. Wheatley’s poem “On Being Brought from Africa to America” appears to be rather inspired and enthusiastic. In fact, the author expresses her positive emotions about being brought to the U.S. and turned into Christianity. It is unlikely, however, that her reaction to enslavement was common. This is because she found herself in quite favorable conditions in Wheatleys’ family, was cared for and well-taught, whereas other Black persons labored extremely hard and experienced severe suffering while being slaves.
Why do you think Bradstreet and Wheatley are still read in the 21st century?
On the whole, it might be possible to assume that Bradstreet’s and Wheatley’s works are still read in the 21st century due to a variety of reasons. In addition, apart from their historical value, these poems express the feelings of their authors, and many people might have similar emotions, which could make the poems “resonate” with readers’ feelings. The fact that the poems are rather precise and eloquent further increases their value from this point of view.