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Iola Leroy

by Frances Ellen Watkins Harper

First published in 1892, this stirring novel by the great writer and activist Frances Harper tells the story of the young daughter of a wealthy Mississippi planter who travels to the North to attend school, only to be sold into slavery in the South when it is discovered that she has Negro blood. After she is freed by the Union army, she works to reunify her family and embrace her heritage, committing herself to improving the conditions for blacks in America. Through her fascinating characters, including Iola's brother who fights at the front in a colored regiment, Harper weaves a vibrant and provocative chronicle of the Civil War and its consequences through African American eyes in this critical contribution to the nation's literature.

Three Classic African-American Novels: Clotel, Iola Leary, The Marrow of Tradition

by Frances Ellen Watkins Harper Charles Waddell Chesnutt William W. Brown

William Wells Brown, Frances E. W. Harper, and Charles W. Chesnutt, three black writers who bore witness to the experience of their people under slavery, create a portrait of black life in the 19th century in these three novels.

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