Author: Bethany Veney


Narrative of Bethany Veney, a Slave Woman, The (1889)

In The Narrative of Bethany Veney, A Slave Woman, published in Worcester, Massachusetts, in 1889, Bethany Veney dictates the story of her life to a white woman identified only by the initials M. W. G. This narrative, along with other slave narratives, offer a composite portrait of authors’ self-styled personal stories. The amanuensis’ interests, lived experiences, and editing choices, as well as their social relations and expectations shaped the relationship and conversation with the authors. Although the narratives aren’t unmediated autobiographies, they are no less authentic and are just as fruitful a source for reconstructing historical experience.