Oroonoko, or The Royal Slave
Aphra Behn was the first woman writer in England to make a living by her pen, and her novel Oroonoko was the first work published in English to express sympathy for African slaves. Perhaps based partly on Behn’s own experiences living in Surinam, the novel tells the tragic story of a noble slave, Oroonoko, and his love Imoinda. The work was an instant success and was adapted for the stage in 1695 (and more recently by the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1999).Behn’s work paved the way for women writers who came after her, as Virginia Woolf noted in a Room of One’s Own (1928): “All women together ought to let flowers fall upon the tomb of Aphra Behn, … for it was she who earned them the right to speak their minds.”
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August 15, 2012
Had to read this for one of my history classes in college. I liked it for a book about slavery. My friend and I got the love story aspect of the story more than this historical aspects of the story. Overall, I liked finally being able to read a book by a woman and it was better than anything else we read in that class...