By Eve Raimon
This very refined booklet is exceptional by means of taking the determine of the tragic mulatto heavily as an embodiment of significant matters approximately race and kingdom within the antebellum United States.—Michael Bennett, ny collage, BrooklynSince its inception, the USA has been intensely preoccupied with interracialism. the idea that is embedded far and wide in our social and political textile, together with our experience of nationwide id. And but, in either its quantitative and symbolic varieties, interracialism continues to be an incredibly elusive phenomenon, inflicting coverage makers and census forums to wrangle over easy methods to delineate it and, on an emblematic point, stirring severe feelings from worry to fascination.In The "Tragic Mulatta" Revisited, Eve Allegra Raimon specializes in the mixed-race girl slave in literature, arguing that this determine turned a symbolic car for explorations of race and nation—both of which have been in hindrance within the mid-nineteenth century. at the moment, judicial, statutory, social, and medical debates in regards to the that means of racial distinction (and intermixture) coincided with disputes over frontier growth, which have been by no means in basic terms approximately land acquisition but in addition actually in regards to the "complexion" of that frontier. Embodying either northern and southern ideologies, the "amalgamated" mulatta, the writer argues, should be considered as quintessentially American, a precursor to modern motifs of "hybrid" and "mestizo" identities. the place others have occupied with the gendered and racially abject place of the "tragic mulatta," Raimon reconsiders texts via such critical antislavery writers as Lydia Maria baby, William Wells Brown, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and Harriet Wilson to indicate that the determine is extra usefully tested as a fashion of figuring out the unstable and moving interface of race and nationwide identification within the antebellum interval.