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Chapter 5 - Mesmeric Revolution

Hopkins’s Matrilineal Haiti

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 November 2023

Mary Grace Albanese
Affiliation:
SUNY Binghamton
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Summary

The final chapter, “Mesmeric Revolution: Pauline Hopkins’s Matrilineal Haiti,” extends the coordinates of Hopkins’s global commitments, charting an alternative geography beneath the Africa-oriented Of One Blood. By turning to the Caribbean, Hopkins reveals how Haiti emerges at key moments of energetic resistance. Moreover, she explicitly genders these moments of resistance as feminine. Focusing on the matrilineage of Hannah, Mira, and Dianthe, I argue that women in the novel carry specifically Haitian valences: from colonial Saint-Dominguan mesmerism, to the poison of Makandal, to the legacy of marronage. This muted Caribbean geography recenters women at the heart of the narrative, adumbrates Hopkins’s anti-imperialist politics, and subverts the dehumanizing energy politics of plantation genealogies.

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  • Mesmeric Revolution
  • Mary Grace Albanese, SUNY Binghamton
  • Book: Black Women and Energies of Resistance in Nineteenth-Century Haitian and American Literature
  • Online publication: 09 November 2023
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781009314268.006
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  • Mesmeric Revolution
  • Mary Grace Albanese, SUNY Binghamton
  • Book: Black Women and Energies of Resistance in Nineteenth-Century Haitian and American Literature
  • Online publication: 09 November 2023
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781009314268.006
Available formats
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Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Mesmeric Revolution
  • Mary Grace Albanese, SUNY Binghamton
  • Book: Black Women and Energies of Resistance in Nineteenth-Century Haitian and American Literature
  • Online publication: 09 November 2023
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781009314268.006
Available formats
×