Anne Bradstreet Vs Phillis Wheatley Analysis

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Anne Bradstreet and Phillis Wheatley are two of the most important early American poets. Bradstreet was the first published American poet and Wheatley is considered to have begun the black American literary tradition (Norton, 110, 403). Both of these incredible women made enormous strides for the development of American literature at a time when it was difficult for women to be taken seriously as authors, and it is striking to notice the similarities between their individual styles. For example, both writers use descriptions of nature in conjunction with their reflections on religion. Bradstreet’s work “Contemplations” heavily features descriptions of the environment of the New World. She seems in awe of all of the new flora to which she had not been exposed while she was in England, and focuses particularly on the sun. Its beauty amazes Bradstreet and she proclaims that had she not known her own God, she would have claimed it to be a deity the same way other cultures had done (Bradstreet, Norton, 113). She also speculates that this wondrous nature is a sign of God’s majesty: "If so much excellence abide below, / How excellent is He that dwells on high, / Whose power and beauty by His works we know?" (Bradstreet, Norton, 112). This suggests that her experience in the New World and the beauty of its wilderness convinced her that God was greater than she had previously thought. It elevated His power in her mind. While Wheatley also looks to nature in relation to God, her

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