Ain't I a Woman? Sojourner Truth
Well, children, where there is so much racket there
must be something out of kilter. I think that twixt the
negroes of the South and the women at the North,
all talking about rights, the white men will be in a fix
pretty soon. But what's all this here talking about?
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! And ain't I a woman?
Look at me! Look at my arm! I have ploughed and
planted, and gathered into barns, and no man could head
me! And ain't I a woman? I could work as much and eat
as much as a man - when I could get it - and bear the
lash as well! And ain't I a woman? I have borne
thirteen children, and seen most all sold off to
slavery, and when I cried out with my mother's grief,
none but Jesus heard me! And ain't I a woman?
Then they talk about this thing in the head; what's
this they call it? (member of audience whispers,
"intellect") That's it, honey. What's that got to do
with women's rights or negroes' rights? If my cup
won't hold but a pint, and yours holds a quart,
wouldn't you be mean not to let me have my
little half measure full?
Then that little man in black there, he says women
can't have as much rights as men, 'cause Christ
wasn't a woman! Where did your Christ come from?
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! And now they is asking to do it, the men better
Obliged to you for hearing me, and now old Sojourner
ain't got nothing more to say.
Truth, Sojourner. "Ain't I a Woman?" Women's Convention. Akron, Ohio. 29 May 1851. Feminist.com. Web. 17 Aug. 2016.
In lines 12-14, "I have ploughed and planted... could head me!" the author emphasizes her experiences through the use of