Phillis Wheatley On Being Brought To America Analysis

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1. Phillis Wheatley’s audience in “On Being Brought to America” is the Africans brought to America by the slave trade. I believe this because in line 5, she states that “Some view our sable race with scornful eye”. She wants the African people to believe that all can become a Christian and all can receive redemption.

2. Wheatley had gone through so many horrible events that she needed to believe and depend on a God. She was taught in line 2 to understand Christianity and that God views all men with equality. But in line 7, she knows that the typical white Christian would never feel equal to slave. Wheatley knows that all have sinned even Christians, Negros, and Cain.

3. Wheatley’s tone in the poem is humble. She is trying to convey to the
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In the title, “Being Brought” refers to Wheatley being taken against her will. She wrote this title to inform her audience on the background information, like where she was from and taken to, otherwise might not have been understood from the poem. She uses the passive voice to be different from what would be spoken normally in conversation. I think she tried to put a lot of thought into her poems to help the audience focus.

5. Mercy can be taken in two ways in line 1. Wheatley believes that mercy helped her come to America and meet a family who treated her decently. Also, mercy now covers her sins because she is now a Christian.

6. Benighted, for Phillis Wheatley, had a strong significance to her history. She was a very bright and intellectual women, but to Americans, all they cared about was how much she could work for them. I think she also uses benighted in past tense to show that she has overcome that and now has found what she truly loved doing, writing.

7. The word “Once” makes a huge statement in Wheatley’s poem. I believe that the first three lines show her life beginning as a Christian. But after “Once” is used, it brings the reality of how others divide Christians and don’t view them in the same
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