Dr. Julia Hamilton has published "'African' Songs and Women's Abolitionism in the Home, 1787-1807" in Studies in Eighteenth-Century Culture. Her article explores the process of learning the music and lyrics of William Howard’s “The Negro’s Lamentation” (1800) in the British home. Published in a period of widespread debate over the abolition of the slave trade, this “African” song contains lyrics written from the imagined perspective of an enslaved African who accuses the British public of apathy and complicity with human trafficking. Hamilton argues that British women were the primary consumers of political songs like “The Negro’s Lamentation” in this period and shows that women gained intimate knowledge of abolitionist arguments by including such songs in their everyday musical practice.
The article can be found here; those without institutional access to the journal are welcome to reach out to the author for a pdf of the article at jmh2273 [at] columbia.edu