Literary Voice in "Maud Martha" and "Plum Bun" Analytical Essay by Jay Writtings LLC

Literary Voice in "Maud Martha" and "Plum Bun"
A critical analysis of voice in Gwendolyn Brooks' "Maud Martha" and Jessie Redmond Fausets' "Plum Bun".
# 119965 | 4,002 words | 2 sources | MLA | 2010 | US
Published on May 31, 2010 in Literature (American) , English (Analysis) , African-American Studies (Gender)

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This paper analyzes how Brooks and Fauset use voice as a means of resistance in their novels. The author argues that it is up to the readers as literary critics to redefine the images of black women in literature by unveiling their heroic qualities and by revealing the revolutionary voices that are inherent in their oral, embodied, creative, adorned, dynamic, and written beginnings.

Oral voice
Embodied voice
Creative voice
Adornment voice
Dynamic voice
Written voice

From the Paper:

"Embodied voice is one of Angela Murray's and Maud Martha's most major forms of resistance. Embodied voice is resistance through action; such as rebellious gestures or activities. Also, embodied voice is rebellious feelings or thoughts. Angela Murray, in choosing to pass, must embody most of her resistance. Maud Martha, who is, most times, extremely silent, must embody voice as well.
"Angela Murray's embodied voice is in reaction to passing in white society. Not only does her embodied voice resist the oppression of blacks in a racist society, but it also resists the enslavement of self she experiences due to passing. We see a very strong display of Angela's embodied voice when her love interest, Roger Fielding, tells a restaurant owner not to allow a group of blacks to eat in a restaurant. "Well, I put a spoke in the wheel of those 'coons!"(Fauset, 133), he tells Angela proudly, after he has committed the racist act. Although she cannot reveal that she is black, Angela's gestures embody resistance: "She was silent, lifeless"(Fauset, 133). Not only did she refuse to entertain Roger's antics, she also left him for a short time. "But, she told herself, she was through with Roger Fielding"(Fauset, 137). The fact that Roger's actions bothered her and her reluctance to continue a relationship with him was a clear form of resistance through Angela's embodied voice. Besides this gesture, Angela did many things while "passing", in attempts to align herself with her race. She surrounded herself with politically progressive people, she attended progressive community events, and she befriended black classmates."

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