Transgression of Race, Gender, and Class:

Reading Mary Ann Shadd’s A Plea for Emigration


  • Subrata Chandra Mozumder PhD Student, Department of English, University of Louisiana, Lafayette, USA; Assistant Professor, Department of English, Daffodil International University, Bangladesh



transgression, race, gender, class, Mary Ann Shadd, A Plea for Emigration


This paper aims to explore Mary Ann Shadd’s transgression of race, gender, and class boundaries by employing a close reading of the text, A Plea for Emigration. I will explore the triangular relationship between race, class, and gender seen in the text from intersectional feminist perspectives. My contention is that, through her activism by pen, especially in A Plea for Emigration, Shadd exposes the feminist voice that enables her to protest against racism, slavery, gender stratification, and marginalization based on class hierarchy. In other words, I claim that Shadd’s transgression of the borders of race, gender, and class lies in her activism and
ideology as a woman, black, and marginalized. This paper will, therefore, show that Mary Ann Shadd strongly transgresses the borders of race, gender, and class as the first black woman who owned and edited a newspaper, inspired American blacks towards freedom, confronted her contemporary male leaders, exposed the female gaze during a period of history when the male gaze was predominant and authoritative, became a public speaker making the world listen to her while working with the so-called socially aesthetic people despite being a “negro”.




How to Cite

Mozumder, S. C. (2023). Transgression of Race, Gender, and Class:: Reading Mary Ann Shadd’s A Plea for Emigration. Crossings: A Journal of English Studies, 14, 74–83.