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The most widely quoted version of this famous speech appears first and is from The Narrative of Sojourner Truthwritten by others and published in However, both versions rely upon personal s by others and no known transcript of the speech exists. Well, children, where there is so much racket there must be something out of kilter. That man over there says that women need to be helped into carriages, and lifted over ditches, and to have the best place everywhere. Nobody ever helps me into carriages, or over mud-puddles, or gives me any best place!
Look at me! Look at my arm! I have ploughed and planted, and gathered into barns, and no man could head me! I could work as much and eat as much as a man - when I could get it - and bear the lash as well!
Where did your Christ come from? From God and a woman! Man had nothing to do with Him. If the first woman God ever made was strong enough to turn the world upside down all alone, these women together ought to be able to turn it back, and get it right side up again! One of the most unique and interesting speeches of the convention was made by Sojourner Truth, an emancipated slave.
It is impossible to transfer it to paper, or convey any adequate idea of the effect it produced upon the audience. Those only can appreciate it who saw her powerful form, her whole-souled, earnest gesture, and listened to her strong and truthful tones.
She came forward to the platform and addressing the President said with great simplicity: May I say a few words? Receiving an affirmative answer, she proceeded; I want to say a few words about this matter. I have as much muscle as any man, and can do as much work as any man.
I have plowed and reaped and husked and chopped and mowed, and can any man do more than that? I have heard much about the sexes being equal; I can carry as much as any man, and can eat as much too, if I can get it. I am strong as any man that is now. I have heard the Bible and have learned that Eve caused man to sin. Well if woman upset the world, do give her a chance to set it right side up again.
The lady has spoken about Jesus, how he never spurned woman from him, and she was right. When Lazarus died, Mary and Martha came to him with faith and love and besought him to raise their brother. And Jesus wept—and Lazarus came forth. And how came Jesus into the world? Through God who created him and woman who bore him. Man, where is your part? But the women are coming up blessed be God and a few of the men are coming up with them.
But man is in a tight place, the poor slave is on him, woman is coming on him, and he is surely between a hawk and a buzzard. Highlighted vocabulary will appear in both printed versions. Our work has evolved in the last 30 years, from reducing prejudice to tackling systemic injustice. Two versions of the speech appear here.
Grade Level. Text Dependent Questions. She has had a difficult life and has been treated very poorly. She states that she has worked hard in the fields and no man ever helped her. She also had most of her children sold into slavery. Truth was trying to persuade people that women, black or white, should be treated as equal to men. They should have rights just like men. The tone in the beginning is of despair and sadness, with examples about working in the field and having most of her children sold into slavery.
Why did Truth make this allusion? She is referring to Eve from the Bible. Eve in the Bible was blamed for bringing sin into the world. Truth mentions this because most people in that day would have recognized the allusion and it supports her point that women are strong. What two groups does Sojourner Truth list as challenging the white man for more rights?
In the second part of her speech, Truth refutes two of the claims made in opposition to equal rights for women and Black people. What are those claims and how does she argue against them? Then, she addresses the claim by some Christians that Jesus was a man and, therefore, men are superior to women.
She draws on her own Christian faith and understanding of the Bible to illustrate why those claims fail in her view. Reread the speech with identity in mind after studying Identity Standard 3 of the Social Justice Standards.
Cite a line or section of the text that you think best reflects what Truth is expressing about identity. The speech is in fact printed in the newspaper article supplied here. By giving a woman a pint and a man a quart, the woman is unable to take more than the pint will hold.
A woman will have only as many rights as you give her. Giving her some does not mean she will take more than she has been given. Reveal Answers. Teach This in a Learning Plan. X Add to an Existing Learning Plan. Teacher Version Includes text, author, textvocabulary terms, text dependent questions with answers.
Student Version Includes text, author, vocabulary terms, text dependent questions. Do Not Print Images. Great article. Coming from the perspective of a student, this is a very straightforward and clear evaluation of Sojourner Truth's iconic speech. Get the Learning for Justice Newsletter to get started.
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