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Phillis Wheatley, An Icon Of Artistry: Women’s History Month

In this series, Change.MillionVoices celebrates inspirational women from the past and present day America. We value these women for the way they continue to shape our culture and history today. 

The First African American Woman To Publish A Book Of Poetry

Philis Wheatley was born in Gambia, After in the 1750s. She was captured by slave traders and sent to America when she was still a child, where she was sold to the Wheatley family in Boston, MA, according to Women’s History.

The family educated Wheatley upon her arrival, allowing her to read the Bible, as well as classic literature. She excelled in studies of astronomy and geography, and began writing poetry around the age of 14.

“An Elegiac Poem, on the Death of the Celebrated Divine George Whitefield” shot Wheatley to fame in 1770. So much so she traveled internationally to publish her work, “Poems of Various Subjects, Religious and Moral.”

Religion was a key influence in Wheatley’s works, leading her to fame within Protestant communities in America and Great Britain. Her talents are credited with proving the equality of those trafficked within the international slave trade from Africa.

Who Are You Celebrating For The 2023 Women’s History Month?

Let us know! If any of your local, state, and federal lawmakers and politicians are brilliant women, we want to help you support them. Sign up for Change.MillionVoices today OR (text MV to 80550) and share this article with your friends and family.


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