Remaking the Myth of a Chosen People in Catharine Sedgwick’s <i>Hope Leslie</i>

Albert H. Tricomi

in Missionary Positions

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print March 2011 | ISBN: 9780813035451
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813039640 | DOI:
Remaking the Myth of a Chosen People in Catharine Sedgwick’s Hope Leslie

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The chapter explores the missionary novel by Catharine Sedgwick, Hope Leslie. This missionary novel analyzes Faith Leslie's marriage to an Indian, her conversion to Catholicism, and denial to return to her puritan family. The novel however does not fit the essential principle of a missionary novel. According to this chapter, a missionary novel should have an American missionary as the protagonist while this particular novel has Hope and her ally Magawisca as twin protagonists. Sedgwick portrays myth's parochialism and racist brutality and also presents an alternative founding myth for the political nation based on the principles of mutual respect as well as inclusiveness.

Keywords: missionary novel; Catharine Sedgwick; Faith Leslie; Indian; Catholicism; puritan family; American missionary; Magawisca; racist brutality; mutual respect; inclusiveness

Chapter.  7885 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Literary Theory and Cultural Studies

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