Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Gendered ResistanceWomen, Slavery, and the Legacy of Margaret Garner$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Mary E. Frederickson and Delores M. Walters

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780252037900

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252037900.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use.date: 21 September 2021

Secret Agents

Secret Agents

Black Women Insurgents on Abolitionist Battlegrounds

(p.77) Chapter 3 Secret Agents
Gendered Resistance

Veta Smith Tucker

University of Illinois Press

This chapter explores the gendered schema at the core of enslaved black women's abolitionist resistance and the scholarly neglect it received by examining the multiple and varied forms of resistance to labor and sexual abuse that four enslaved women engaged in: Mary Elizabeth Bowser, Margaret Garner, Harriet Tubman, and Mary Ellen Pleasant. In all cases, black women manipulated the stereotype of the hapless, deficient, enslaved black woman and used it as camouflage for their anti-slavery and anti-patriarchy insurgency. Either momentarily or permanently, Bowser, Garner, Tubman, and Pleasant became agents of their own or others' liberation. They exercised tactical ingenuity and rare insight into the illogic of both slavery and patriarchy. Ultimately, the success of these women's gendered resistance mystified antagonists, supporters, and scholars alike.

Keywords:   abolitionist resistance, sexual abuse, Mary Elizabeth Bowser, Margaret Garner, Harriet Tubman, Mary Ellen Pleasant, anti-slavery insurgency, anti-patriarchy insurgency, slavery, patriarchy

Illinois Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.