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Black Well-BeingHealth and Selfhood in Antebellum Black Literature$
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Andrea Stone

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780813062570

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813062570.001.0001

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Ancient Ideals and the Healthy Self

Ancient Ideals and the Healthy Self

Mary Ann Shadd’s Plea for Emigration and Martin Robison Delany’s Condition, Elevation, Emigration, and Destiny

(p.51) 2 Ancient Ideals and the Healthy Self
Black Well-Being

Andrea Stone

University Press of Florida

Emulating more the conventions of the almanac than those of wildly popular early- to mid-nineteenth-century emigration narratives authored by British émigrés to Canada, Mary Ann Shadd and Martin Delany urge black evacuation through a claim for black health and well-being, vivifying the crucial relation they see between corporeal and political ideals. Each advocates the connection between a healthy black body and black political independence, irreconcilable with U.S. residency. Their quest for and designation of healthful places of settlement draw from classical Greek characterizations, which idealize hygia. Such an ideal forms the primary vehicle for their propaganda.

Keywords:   emigration, narratives, health, classical Greece, Canada, United States, slavery, black body, hygia, independence

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