Of On Being Brought From Africa To America By Phillis Wheatley

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“Their colour is a diabolic die. . . .” This is a quote from the poem written by Phillis Wheatley entitled, “On Being Brought from Africa to America,” written in 1773 . First will be the exploration Wheatley’s journey to America. Followed by her conversion to Christianity. Lastly, this essay will explore what Wheatley found to be most important, her race, and how it plays into her new found faith. Wheatley argues the significance that her race plays in her finding her Christian faith and how she and other people of color have souls that can be saved. Beginning with the title of the poem, it is clear that Wheatley wants her audience to understand the importance of having been brought to America, in a forceful way. This is distinct from using the word “coming”i because the word coming gives the connotation that she would have had a choice in the matter when in all actuality, Wheatley was brought over as a slave having no choice due to the fact that the people bringing her to America thought of her as property rather than as a human being with her own thoughts, feelings, and opinions. Although, Wheatley was forced to come to America to become the slave to American masters, she still claims in this poem that it was “mercy”i that brought her away from her home to America. So even though she was placed in what can be assumed as horrid conditions in the ship that would have brought her across the Atlantic, Wheatley managed to make it seem as though it was not the worst
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