Oroonoko Essay Topics

Aphra Behn

Oroonoko

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Oroonoko Essay Topics

1. Oroonoko begins with the narrator’s claim that the story she will tell is a true one. Discuss the significance of this claim. Is truth always valued in the novel? Are there any points at which it seems like the narrator might not be telling the truth?

2. The novella depicts different kinds of slavery. What are the differences between them? Is one better than the other? Is slavery ever justified?

3. Plantation slavery in the United States was predicated on a racial hierarchy that resulted in black people being enslaved, while white people were free. How is the slavery depicted in Oroonoko different?

4. Aphra Behn’s novella has been praised for its sympathetic portrayal of African characters. How is race represented in the text? Are Behn’s depictions of African people completely positive?

5. The representation of Surinam’s indigenous people recalls the idea of the “Noble Savage”. Explain what is meant by the…

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