Document Type



Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor's Name

Linda Strong-Leek

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Alfonso Hawkins

Third Advisor's Name

Phillip L. Marcus

Date of Defense



Maria W. Stewart was the first American-born and the first African-American woman known to address a mixed audience, from 1831 to 1833, and publish her essays and speeches. The purpose of this thesis is to examine Maria W. Stewart's acts of defiance--as the first public representation of Black Feminism: demanding that white America end slavery and grant rights to black men and women, re-appropriating the hegemonic, patriarchal codes which have significant social power by exposing their inconsistencies and deconstructing their ideologies, voicing the truth about the status of African-American women in early nineteenth-century America, and challenging Black women to become entrepreneurs and (as she did) acquire an education, establish schools, and take an active role in their community.





Rights Statement

Rights Statement

In Copyright. URI:
This Item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this Item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).