Religion In Phyllis Wheatley's Poetry

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Religious Effects Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral by Phyllis Wheatley was the first book to be published by a black American, and “On being brought from Africa to America” was probably one of the most famous poems included in the book. It discusses Wheatley’s experience of being taken as a slave, and the religious effects of the experience. Religion played a great role in shaping Wheatley’s outlook on many subjects. “On being brought from Africa to America” expresses religion’s effect on Wheatley through her word choices and the overall message of the poem. Wheatley learned how to read the bible from a young age, and her religion greatly affected her poetry; “Phillis Wheatley’s poetic subjects were derived from the Bible, from celebrated public events and from the religion she had absorbed from her pious owners” (McMichael 298). She was very particular when she was…show more content…
“Remember, Christians, Negroes, black as Cain, May be refin’d, and join th’ angelic train” (Lines 7-8). Wheatley’s overall message for the poem is that blacks can be saved and “join th’ angelic train”. This shows how Wheatley desires to spread the good news of Christianity to everyone, not just whites. She wished to express to the readers that faith in God was possible to both blacks and whites, despite how they are treated in a racist society. Phyllis Wheatley was greatly influenced by her religion, and it showed throughout all of her poetry. Her word choice displays her opinions on various subjects through religious filters, and gives readers an insight to her perspectives. Wheatley’s religious experience also prompts her to include messages of God’s mercy throughout her poetry. She expresses that sinners can be saved, no matter what race. If the lost – black or not – can be saved and converted, is change possible on Earth? Can the way we view races be changed as
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